Backyard Bores are your water bore and geotech drilling specialists in the Mackay region, from Bowen to Rockhampton and west to Clermont since 2002

About Us

With our small drilling rig mounted on the back of a very manoeuvrable light truck, we can drill in your back yard (or front yard) to find water for any purpose.

With our large drilling rig (operated by our sister company) we can drill your rock bore for stock, domestic and irrigation use (up to 300mm diameter)


  • Water bore drilling to industry best practice standards
  • Environmental, Geotech & soil sampling drilling (NDD, SPT, DCP, Monitoring wells, Geoprobe and push tubes, split spoon, etc) - For a full list of our Geotech drilling products available, please visit our Geotech & Environmental Drilling page
  • Bore repair / cleanout, sand pumping, air lifting (blowing clean)
  • Bore test pumping, water level logging, flow rate data logging
  • Simple water testing (Salinity-TDS, Iron-TDI & PH levels)
  • Drilling using Solid Stem (Continuous Flight) Augers (CFA) and Hollow Stem Augers (HSA)
  • Drilling using rock hammer (DTH or rotary air)
  • Borehole camera inspections and reports
  • Production bore drilling/cleaning and large diameter well cleanouts
  • Installation of spears
  • Pump supply and installation
  • Comprehensive drinking water testing available on request
  • Licensed drillers for hire

If you are looking for water to keep the yard green, top up the pool, or reduce the high cost of town water, give us a call and we can come and drill for water in your backyard (or front yard) saving you money.  You can water any day of the week without restrictions.  We use the latest techniques and equipment with the best quality products in our bores with factory cut fine slot casing (0.4mm) eliminating 98% of the fine sand compared to hand cut slots.

We also offer test pumping of bores to Australian Standard AS2368–1990 Test Pumping of Water Wells from 2 hours to 28 days in duration.

Call 1800 193 194 or email or go to our Contact Us form page for a free quote

Use our online booking system here




You have done just that! Backyard Bores and Geotech Drilling have several licensed drillers and we work to relevant government requirements.

If you are getting a quote from any driller, ask for their licence number and to see their current Queensland Driller's Licence.

You can search for their name here on the Qld Registered Drillers List before you engage them to drill.

If they are not listed, they are not licensed.

Chances are, if they don't have a Driller's Licence, they won’t construct the bore to ensure the best long-term performance as per industry international best practices.

They probably won't have public liability insurance either. If they damage anything at your property, YOU will have to foot the bill.

Use a licensed driller who has all relevant insurances, why risk it to save a couple of hundred dollars?


NO! Local councils are not and should not be involved in the process of drilling for water on your private property. The resource you are tapping into is a federal reserve owned by the people of Australia.


They are not expensive at all! We are offering a great price using the latest, international best practice standards and equipment for a completed and cased PVC bore, call or email us today for a quote.


No. It doesn't work for us but Contact us and we can give you the numbers of several local diviners.

We do have a good knowledge of the areas around Mackay that have water and what depth a usable bore will be.

When considering a location in your yard for a bore , please take the following into account:

  1. How easy will it be to get the drilling rig to that location? Please see #6 below for rig dimensions.
  2. How easy (and costly) will it be to get power to the pump? Please keep in mind that the pump does not need to be directly on top of the bore, it can be inside a fence, under your house, in a shed, etc.
  3. How easy will it be to distribute the water from the pump outlet? Do you want the pump outlet near the fence so you can run poly around your fence line to have taps every 10m or so?


Try our new Bore Search, just go to our search page and put in your address to see how many bores are nearby, it's free!

In May 2019 we updated our database with 15,000 additional bores and extended the search radius to 5km in rural areas.  We have included data from Bowen to Rockhampton.


Please try to locate the underground services on your property, the hardest one to find is the pipe from your house to the sewer mains.

If you have your house drainage plans (house connection plans), that would be fantastic. Also look for town water, power, storm water, down pipes, phone etc.

We will contact 1100 (Dial Before you Dig) but they only provide locations of power, major sewer and telephone at the street, not on your property.

It’s VERY IMPORTANT for you to locate these services as it is your responsibility as the landowner or their authorised representative.

Call us if you have concerns, we can apply for the plans from council for a $58 fee!!


Our rig is mounted on a light truck and is 2.35m wide (at the mirrors), 5.7m long and 2.7m high.

We need to reverse the truck over the top of the desired drilling location.

If you have any concerns, please call us and we can come inspect and do some measurements.


Please clear up the area surrounding the proposed drilling site. We need about a 2m radius of cleared area.

If there are trees or stumps, branches or shrubs in the immediate area please trim or remove them.

If we need to come in through a fence panel, please make sure it's removed by the time we arrive. If we need to trim trees or remove fence panel we will have to add an hourly surcharge.

Please call us and notify our staff if you have a fence that needs removing or the area needs trees and branches cut down.


Click here to access our online calendar but we operate 7 days a week.

Some weeks we can be fully booked with local or out-of-town projects. It’s best to check the calendar to see when we have a free block.


YES! We accept Visa and Mastercard payments or direct bank transfer.


Please call us to discuss your options but often times YES you can.


YES! We can drill all around central Queensland and have drilled from Bowen to Marlborough and west to Moranbah.

Mobilisation fees may apply, please call us to enquire.

What to expect on drilling day.

1. How long does it take?

Drilling and casing can take 4-6 hours depending on the material being drilled and the depth.
It's a four step process:
  1. Drilling
  2. Installing casing
  3. Cleaning out the inside of the casing to remove damaging sands, muds and clay
  4. Flow rate, salt, iron, PH, testing (if required).

2. Will there be a lot of soil/clay/sand to dispose of?

Usually there are 3 - 5 wheelbarrow loads of material that you need to find a place for.  If you have any holes in your yard or low points, now is a great time to fill them.  We cannot take it with us.

3. What size casing is supplied?

100mm diameter casing with factory cut fine slots (0.4 - 0.5mm) is used in the majority of bores, some locations need 0.8mm. We can install 5”, 125mm casing or 80mm casing as required, surcharges may apply.

4. Do I need a driller to come over and look at the site and provide a quote?

No, unless the location you are thinking of is in a difficult place to access or needs fence sections removed or trees cut back. Please call us and discuss if you have any concerns.

5. Do I need to be home while drilling takes place?

No, but please indicate the location of the drilling site with a photo or stake.

We will require access to working town water and an active power point to complete the process as well.

6. Can you supply and fit a pump for me??

We would be happy to provide a price for a supplied, installed and configured pump to suit your needs.  We could even bring one on drilling day and you can be watering your lawn before we drive out the driveway.

Pump or bore issues

What to do if your existing bore has lost water, your pump has lost water pressure, is running but no water is coming out, or it's pumping a lot of sand?

1.If your pump is running and no water is coming out but the taps are open and it sounds normal.


You may need to prime your pump (especially if you haven't used your pump for more than a week), please see our priming video for instructions. If you have primed your pump 3 times and all it does is spit out the water in the bowl of the pump, (about 2L) but then stops, turn it off at the power point, then call us , it needs more love.

We offer a free appraisal of your bores' condition as well as an idea of the usual required depth for your area based on years of experience and logged bores in the area.

This can often be done over the phone. 

It's FREE!

2. Is your pump is making excessive noise, new noises (squealing), or the motor feels really hot to touch?

It could be that your pump has seen better days, please call us or Don Phimister on 0439 949 679 , R&T Pumps on 4953 3700 , NQ Water on 4952 2252 , or Dowdens Pumping & Water Treatment on 4969 4949 for your pump inspection and repair needs.

3. Does your water flow rate start out good but then after a while (seconds, minutes or hours) reduce back to a dribble? Then might come back good briefly then drop off again?

It could be the aquifer has been depleted, run dry, moved, shifted or the bore casing is chocked with fine sand. All or any of these is possible. Please call us for a free appraisal.

4. I can hear gurgling coming from my bore right before the flow rate drops!

Similar to #3 above, the usual cause of this is the pump is removing more water than the bore can replenish. If the bore has been established for a few years, the likely cause is the water table has dropped.

Every dry season in Mackay the aquifer levels drop and some bores drilled prior to 2013 were too shallow. The water levels in town bores can drop by 1 to 3 metres (3 - 10 feet) every July - December.

Sometimes there is a quick fix to clean the bore out with our vacuum pump to get more depth.

Sometimes, the only solution is to drill a new bore close by the existing one. Call us for a free appraisal

5. My bore pump is top dressing my lawn with fine sand, is that bad?

Yes! The main causes of this are:
  1. Shifting sands in the aquifer (often in the months following a flood).
  2. Aquifer water levels dropping or rising.
  3. Bore casing failure.
  4. The slots for the water to come into the casing, were cut too big to begin with.
  5. The bore installers used fly screen, shade cloth, stocking and it has disintegrated.

Some of these things are repairable (if only for a short time), otherwise it will require a new bore be drilled to the appropriate depth for today's dryer conditions, with better quality PVC bore casing with factory cut fine slots, and using our industry best practice drilling methods that allow us to put a sand filter around the casing to keep the natural fine sand out.

Call us for your free evaluation.

6. My bore water is causing brown/orange stains on my pump/fence/house/driveway?

The main cause of this is iron bacteria, please see this document from the Dept. Natural Resources and Water for more information.

We can apply a non toxic treatment to the bore which will dissolve the brown/orange sludge and temporarily fix the problem. This is not an expensive treatment and can last for many months.

We can also supply cleaning products to clean both porous (concrete) and non-porous (steel or tin) surfaces around your property.

We can provide an excellent long term solution using a patented ultrasonic device to keep the bacteria from growing. This cutting edge technology is available now.

call us and we can come and test your bore water for total dissolved iron (TDI) and give you an appraisal on what cleaning product(s) are best suited for your bore and your property.

7. After the recent floods/earthquakes/cyclones, my bore/pump has stopped working, is this possible and can I claim it on household insurance?

This is possible, please make use of our free appraisal service of your bores.  We are happy to provide your insurer with whatever documentation they require to evaluate your claim.

8. My pump is humming, the motor is not turning and no water is coming out?

TURN IT OFF IMMEDIATELY! We cannot stress this enough.

Please call us for advice, it could be a simple $40 fix.

9. My pump is still running after I have turned the taps off, is that bad?

It is normal for the pump to continue running for up to 30 seconds after you have turned the taps off.

If your pump continues to run and no water is coming out, please turn it off and call us > or Don Phimister on 0439 949 679 , R&T Pumps on 4953 3700 , NQ Water on 4952 2252 , or Dowdens Pumping & Water Treatment on 4969 4949 for your pump inspection and repair needs.

Our Qualifications

Our licensed drillers have decades of experience in drilling, casing, flow rate test pumping and cleaning bores and are Mackay locals.

Our team is professional and reliable and we always aim for water and your satisfaction.

Warranty and Guarantee Details

Warranties against defects for goods and services we offer

The Office of Fair Trading Queensland advises all suppliers that the following mandatory text shall be included in any warranty advice given against defective goods and services:


“Our goods and services come with guarantees that cannot be excluded under the Australian Consumer Law. For major failures with the service, you are entitled:

  • to cancel your service contract with us; and
  • to a refund for the unused portion, or to compensation for its reduced value.

You are also entitled to choose a refund or replacement for major failures with goods.

If a failure with the goods or a service does not amount to a major failure, you are entitled to have the failure rectified in a reasonable time.

If this is not done, you are entitled to a refund for the goods and to cancel the contract for the service and obtain a refund of any unused portion.

You are also entitled to be compensated for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or damage from a failure in the goods or service.”


How this relates to Bore Construction.

Upon advice from the Queensland Office of Fair Trading from 2018, “as long as bores are constructed to best practice guidelines using acceptable materials, NO WARRANTY CAN BE GIVEN relating to the performance of a bore, quantity, quality or existence of water within any bore thats taps into any Natural Resource.”

All of our bores are constructed to international best practice standards with materials that are Australia Standards regulated and certified.

What that actually means:

No person or company could ever offer a warranty or any type of guarantee against the bore going dry after 1 week, 2 months, 12 months, 10 years etc.

Likewise, no person or company could offer a warranty against any damage primarily caused by this natural resource changing, going dry, producing sand, increasing salinity, changing pH or iron levels, etc.

Lets break the top mandatory quote down into separate categories for services and goods and also provide an explanation of the terms used above and how they relate to bores and pumps in a natural resource.

1. Services supplied by BBGD

We do not have service contracts so this does not apply. We provide bores as an installed product only.

But, as always, your first step is to call us and let us know what the issue is so we may have the opportunity to investigate and either attempt to remedy the issue or mitigate the loss.

2. Goods sold by BBGD

Your first step always needs to be to call us and let us know what the issue is so we may have the opportunity to investigate and attempt to remedy the issue.

How this relates to pump and pumping equipment supplied by us.

If pumps or pumping equipment are defective, we will repair or replace the goods or fix the problem unless the fault is caused by, or from, the natural resource.

What should you do after noticing an issue / problem / potential fault.

  1. stop using the goods when the problem happens
  2. call us and we will advise a potential fix over the phone and / or when the problem can be inspected.
  3. Provide as much information about the events leading up to the problem first being noticed.

3. Explanation of terms

"If a failure with the goods or a service does not amount to a major failure, you are entitled to have the failure rectified in a reasonable time."

We will always attempt to have the problem investigated and rectified within a reasonable time. We are restricted by availability of qualified personnel and access to the location/goods.

"You are also entitled to be compensated for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or damage from a failure in the goods or service."

Except, in the case where the loss or damage is caused, wholly or partially, by the natural resource from which the goods are attached or are pulling resources from.

If the cause of the loss or damage can be attributed to another source unrelated to the natural resource, and indeed is due to a defect of the goods, then the above entitlement applies as prescribed by the OFT and Australian Consumer Law.

Pump Priming Video

Seniors and Carers discount now available

Call us now for an obligation free quote and the discount amount.

15% discount on original price of water bore installation. 10% discount on original price to supply and install pump.

Not valid with any other offer. No other offers allowed, discount applies to standard drilling rates not to already discounted rates.

We are members of the National Ground Water Association, the largest collection of drillers and drilling suppliers in the world.

NGWA goals are:

  • NGWA and its members will use its outstanding scientific and technical leadership, knowledge, and resources to pursue innovation, model best practices, and improve the business climate for the groundwater industry.
  • NGWA will be a credible, valued resource on significant and timely issues that impact the groundwater industry and public access to safe, sustainable groundwater.

We now accept VISA and MASTERCARD payments with no surcharge,earn points AND get a bore! 

Privacy Act 1998

Backyard Bores and Geotech Drilling Pty Ltd has registered as an opt in small business for the Privacy Act 1998 and we have committed to uphold relevant sections of the act and how we deal with your information.

For more information please see the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

And view our Privacy Policy here.

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