Well Abandonment Regulations
Ohio Department of Health and Ohio EPA
You may also wish to see:
Well Sealing Guidelines
Detailed text and illustrations of recommended methods for sealing
abandoned water wells. Forty-four pages.
(Download PDF File 1.2 megs)
Current regulations for private (Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) 3701-28-17) and public water supply wells (OAC 3745-9-10) require that boreholes not converted into wells, and wells not being used to obtain water or provide information on quantity or quality be sealed. The authority for enforcement for public water supplies is the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Division of Drinking and Ground Water. The Ohio Department of Health and the local health departments have authority for enforcement for private wells.
Sealing of an abandoned well must be documented per the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) Section 1521.05 (C). A well sealing report must be submitted to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Soil and Water Resources. A well sealing form can be requested from ODNR by calling 614-265-6740. For private wells, the local health department should be contacted when an abandoned well is going to be sealed.
Selected portions of the Ohio Department of Health's Private Water System Rules Chapter 3701-28
(PP) "Grout" means the materials set forth in or approved under paragraph (F), (G) and (H) of rule 3701-28-09 of the Administrative Code.
(WWW) "Seal" means to close or properly abandon a well, cistern or hauled water storage tank or to close a portion of a well or the annular space of a well.
3701-28-17 Procedures for the sealing of private water systems
(A) Upon completion of testing, a test hole shall either be permanently sealed or converted into a well...
(B) All private water systems that are not providing the primary source of water shall either be sealed in accordance with this rule or maintained in strict compliance with all applicable requirements of this chapter.
(C) All dry holes that are not being used as a private water system shall be sealed in accordance with the provisions of this rule or may be converted to a geothermal system and meet the requirements of paragraph (A) of this rule.
(D) When a replacement private water system or a public water system is installed, the well that is not providing the primary source of water shall be sealed pursuant to the provisions of this rule within thirty days, unless the following conditions can be met:
(1) The well owner demonstrates… that the well will not cause or contribute to contamination of the ground water supply, present a safety hazard or present a public health nuisance;
(2) The well is and will be maintained in compliance with this chapter...
(3) When the well is no longer the primary source of water due to connection to a public water supply, demonstration of the backflow prevention requirements of rule 3745-95 of the Administrative Code is required.
(E) Except as provided in paragraph (G) of this rule, the owner of property on which a permanently out of service well is located shall be responsible for the sealing of the well...
(H) Sealing materials approved for use in rule 3701-28-09 of the Administrative Code shall be used to seal private water systems, test wells, and dry holes.
Selected portions of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency’s Water Well Standards, Ohio Administrative Code 3745-9
(Y) "Grout" means a slurry of cement, bentonite, clay or other impervious material that is used to seal a well, test hole, dry hole, or annular space. Grout specifications for sealing are in rule 3745-9-07 of the Administrative Code.
3745-9-03 Monitoring well.
(A) If not otherwise regulated by the director, or another Ohio agency, board, or commission, then the “Ohio EPA Technical Guidance Manual for Hydrogeologic Investigations and Ground Water Monitoring,” or other standards adopted by the director, shall be used as a guide for monitoring well construction and sealing to prevent the contamination of ground water.
(B) A monitoring well that is damaged or deteriorated shall be either repaired to a state consistent with construction requirements of paragraph (A) of this rule, or sealed in accordance with paragraph (A) of this rule.
(C) A monitoring well that is no longer being used shall be sealed in accordance with paragraph (A) of this rule.
3745-9-10 Abandoned well sealing.
(A) An abandoned well shall be sealed in accordance with this rule and rule 3745-9-07 of the Administrative Code.
(1) The State of Ohio Technical Guidance For Sealing Unused Wells (1996) shall be used as a guide.
(2) Plan approval is not required in accordance with Chapter 3745-91 of the Administrative Code to seal an abandoned well, test hole, or dry hole. A public water system may apply to the director for a variance from this rule in accordance with paragraph (E) of rule 3745-9-02 of the Administrative Code.
(B) A test hole shall either be permanently sealed or converted into a well upon completion of testing.
(C) An abandoned well shall be sealed in accordance with these requirements...
(D) A copy of the well sealing report that is required by section 1521.05 of the Revised Code shall be submitted to the district office within thirty days of sealing a public water system well. The abandoned well location shall be clearly noted on a site map with reference to highways, streets, corporate boundaries, and local physical landmarks.
Selected portions of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ water well sealing requirements, Ohio Revised Code 1521.05
1521.05 Well construction logs - well sealing reports.
(C) Any person that seals a well shall keep a careful and accurate report of the sealing of the well. The sealing report shall show all of the following:
(1) The name of the owner of the well, the address of the location where the well was constructed, and either the state plane coordinates or the latitude and longitude of the well;
(2) The depth of the well, the size and length of its casing, and the static water level of the well;
(3) The sealing procedures, including the volume and type of sealing material or materials and the method and depth of placement of each material;
(4) The date on which the sealing was performed;
(5) The signature of the individual who sealed the well and filed the sealing report;
(6) Any other information required by the chief. The sealing report shall be filed with the division within thirty days after the completion of the sealing of the well on forms prescribed and prepared by the division. For more information please contact:
Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Division of Soil and Water Resources
Water Resources Program
2045 Morse Road
Columbus, Ohio 43229-6693
Voice: (614) 265-6740 Fax: (614) 265-6767