what can you do with the california drilling contractor license

What Can You Do With a D-9 Drilling License?

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In this article, we are going to take a look at what you can do with the C-61/D-9 Drilling, Blasting, and Oil Field Contractor license.

The C-61/D-9 for Drilling, Blasting, and Oil Field Work is one of 73 contractor license classifications available in California. Contractors in the state of California are governed by the CSLB (Contractors State License Board)

There are 4 major classification categories:

  • A-General Engineering
  • B-General Building
  • C-Specialty
  • C-61 Limited Specialty

Commonly referred to as simply the “Drilling License“, this classification falls under the C-61 Limited Specialty category.

These are basically licenses that are more obscure in nature. So there is no trade examination.

What can I do with a C-61/D-9 License?

Most contractors that hold this license are offering a directional drilling, boring or oil field service.

This also may include:

  • Drilling Service
  • Foundation Drilling, Shoring, Environmental Testing
  • Digging Services
  • Drilling and Blasting
  • Directional Drilling
  • Underground Boring
  • Soil Sampling and Drilling
  • Oil Well Services
  • Foundation Drilling
  • Pump & Dewatering

Additional Licensing for D-9 Drilling Contractors

Typically, companies that are performing directional drilling services will hold additional contractor licenses such as:

An individual or company could start out with one or more of these classifications and gradually add on others as time goes on. 

In some cases, a client may request that you hold a particular classification per some kind of insurance requirement. 

Two Types of Licenses for Drilling Contractors

In California, there are two types of contractor licenses for those that specialize in drilling.

If you are performing: installation and repairs of water wells and pumps by boring, drilling, excavating, casing, cementing, and cleaning to provide a supply of uncontaminated water. 

You will get the C-57 Well Drilling License.

However, if you are just specializing in: core and post hole drilling, horizontal drilling (no piping), and drilling for placement of charges and performing blasting work; perform drilling for site dewatering, oil well drilling, and other oil field related specialty work. 

You would get the C-61/D-9 Drilling, Blasting, and Oil Field Work license

what can you do with a California drilling, blasting, and oil field work contractor license

California Drilling Contractor License Requirements

To get a C-61/D-9 License for drilling services you must meet the following basic requirements:

  • 18 Years of Age
  • 4 Years of Journeyman Level Experience
  • Social Security or ITIN #
  • Not Currently on Probation or Parole
  • Signature from a licensed contractor, fellow employee, supervisor, or business associate 

California Contractors License Test

California drilling contractors looking to get their C-61/D-9 license will be tested on the following areas:

1. Business Organization (10%) 

  • Company organization 
  • Project organization

2. Business Finances (15%) 

  • Cash management 
  • Budget and planning
  • Taxes Financial reporting

3. Employment Requirements (12%) 

  • Employment regulations 
  • Evaluation and record-keeping
  • Payroll

4. Bonds, Insurance, and Liens (10%) 

  • Bonds 
  • Workers’ compensation insurance 
  • Liens and other remedies
  • Other insurance

5. Contract Requirements and Execution (23%) 

  • Bidding 
  • Cost control
  • Contracts
  • Payments

6. Licensing Requirements (8%) 

  • Business license 
  • Contractor’s license
  • Activity regulation

7. Safety (15%) 

  • Training and reporting requirements 
  • General safety
  • Hazardous/unknown materials

8. Public Works (7%) 

  • Prevailing wage requirements 
  • Bonding requirements
  • Insurance requirements

What's the exam process like?

The exam will be:

  • 115 Questions
  • Multiple Choice
  • Closed Book
  • 3 Hours to Complete
  • Taken via Computer at a CSLB Testing Facility

  • Exam Centers in: Berkeley, Fresno, Norwalk, Oxnard, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, and San Jose

What kind of math skills do I need?

When it comes to the California contractor license test. You will want to make sure that your math skills are up to par. 

It is important to remember that this is a law examination in which questions will be presented to you as if you are a General Building Contractor with multiple projects running simultaneously.

You can expect math questions related to:

  • Arithmetic
  • Cost Estimation 
  • Calculating Square Footage
  • Units of Measurement
  • Percentages and Decimals

Preparing for Your CSLB license exam

Our complete course will break down all of the essential knowledge you must know to be successful on your CSLB law & business examination.

In addition to passing your exam, you will also be equipped with valuable knowledge that will give you a crash course in how to run a contracting business effectively and profitably.

You will learn:

  • Company organization 
  • How to bid effectively
  • Understanding cost control
  • Various contract types
  • Cash management
  • Estimation fundamentals
  • Business Structures
  • Worker’s Compensation and Taxes
  • Insurance Types in Construction
  • Labor Laws and Employee Rights
  • Hiring and Firing Practices
  • Contractor Bonds
  • Mechanics Liens
  • State Laws and Statutes
  • Project Management 101
  • Prevailing Wages and Public Works
  • And Much More!