Maintenance of an OWTS

Septic Tanks

Septic tanks must be periodically pumped out to remove accumulated solids and grease to prevent discharge of solids that would clog the dispersal system. The recommended frequency of pumping is 5-10 years, depending on occupancy, water use, presence of garbage disposal and lifestyle. Septic tanks can only be pumped by a Registered Liquid Waste Hauler in good standing with the County.

Leach Field

It is important to protect your leach field. Don’t drive over it, build over it, dig into it. A leach field has perforated pipes or liquid emitters that are critical to your septic system operating smoothly and placing anything on top of the drain field will restrict air slow. Similarly, heavy objects can cause the pipes to crack.

Do not place any of the following objects on the leach field, for any period:

  • Vehicles
  • Building (of any size)
  • Ponds
  • Pools
  • Haystacks
  • Pavement/cement

Plant grass or shallow rooting plants on top of your drain field area. Grass absorbs water and nutrients from soil and prevents erosion! No not plant trees or plants with deep roots. Roots can easily dig down and plug the perforated pipes.

Using less water may increase the life of the Onsite Wastewater Treatment System (OWTS). Direct water from land and roof drains away from the leach field.

Do not put chemicals, grease, paint and other complex substances down the drain.

Enhanced Treatment and Alternative Dispersal Systems

Due to their more technical nature, Enhanced Treatment Systems require more intensive monitoring and maintenance to ensure that they function properly. A parcel owner is required to contract with an Onsite System Service Providers (OSSPs). The county maintains a list of approved OSSPs. The OSSP is usually certified by an OWTS manufacturer or proprietor to conduct maintenance and replace needed parts for each type of enhanced treatment or alternative dispersal system.

The requirements for frequency, breadth of inspections including effluent sampling, and reporting to the county are described in the Enhanced Treatment System Regulations.