Do I need approval to install a septic system in Travis County?
- Travis County approval is required prior to the installation and/or operation of an on-site sewage facility (septic system). The Travis County Code is the codification of Court Orders representing the policies and procedures of Travis County.
Are septic tank locations public record?
Contact your local health department for public records. These permits should come with a diagram of the location where the septic system is buried. Depending on the age of your septic system, you may be able to find information regarding the location of your septic system by making a public records request.
How do you figure out where your septic tank is?
How to Find Where Your Septic Tank is Located
- Consult a Septic Tank Diagram or Map. This is the easiest way to find your septic tank, as it will indicate exactly where the tank and drain field is located on the property.
- Follow the Sewer Outlet Pipes.
- Search Your Yard.
How far does a septic tank have to be from a property line in Texas?
A well shall be located a minimum horizontal distance of one hundred (100) feet from an existing or proposed septic system absorption field, septic system spray area, a dry litter poultry facility and fifty (50) feet from any adjacent property line provided the well is located at the minimum horizontal distance from
Can I inspect my own septic system in Texas?
In the State of Texas, the aerobic septic systems must be inspected 3-4 times a year by a licensed septic professional. Under current State changes in the law, it is now possible for the homeowner to take a certification course on their particular brand of septic system and to perform the maintenance themselves.
How do you find a metal detector with a septic tank?
6 Steps to Locate a Septic Tank
- Find Your Main Sewer Drain Line. Sewage from your toilets, sinks, and showers collects into a main drain line.
- Check Permits and Public Records.
- Determine Septic Tank Material.
- Time to Dig.
- Mark the Location for Future Maintenance.
Do I have to change my septic tank?
Under the new rules, if you have a specific septic tank that discharges to surface water (river, stream, ditch, etc.) you are required to upgrade or replace your septic tank treatment system to a full sewage treatment plant by 2020, or when you sell a property, if it’s prior to this date.
How far down is a septic tank lid?
Often, septic tank lids are at ground level. In most cases, they have buried anywhere from four inches to four feet underground.
How far from the house should a leach field be?
Local codes and regulations that stipulate the distance of the septic tank from the house vary depending on the locale, but the typical minimum distance is 10 feet.
How close to property line can drain field be?
Common guidelines require at least 50′ clearance distance between a well and a septic system tank or 150′ between a well and a septic drainfield or leaching bed but you will see that different authorities may recommend different distances. Local soil and rock conditions can make these “rules of thumb” unreliable.
Can you have a septic tank without a leach field?
The waste from most septic tanks flows to a soakaway system or a drainage field. If your septic tank doesn’t have a drainage field or soakaway system, the waste water will instead flow through a sealed pipe and empty straight into a ditch or a local water course.
How many septic tanks can you have per acre in Texas?
(Q) How many houses can I put on my property with septic? (A) You may have one single family dwelling per acre that utilize public water supply and on-site sewage facilities. Where a private water supply is used and on-site sewage facilities, you must maintain one single family dwelling per one and a half acres.
How long does a septic system last in Texas?
Fortunately, concrete septic tanks, which are found in this area, can last 40 years to nearly indefinitely with proper maintenance. A conventional septic drainfield has a varying life expectancy based on the function of the soil percolation rate, drainfield size, and usage level. Aerial of a septic system install.
How long do septic tanks last in Texas?
Age of the System It’s pretty common for a septic system to last 40 years or longer, which means if you buy a new home, you might never need to replace it.
If your house or business was destroyed in the 2013 Halloween Floods, you may be able to obtain a buyout from the insurance company. Please complete and submit the Travis County Buyout Information Form, and a member of our team will contact you. NEW! If your house or company is located within the Gilleland and Walnut Creek Watershed regions (see map), you may be eligible for a refund of your permit costs whether you repair or replace your On-Site Sewage Facility. To find out if you qualify, fill out the form below (septic tank).
To ask for a refund, you may either download or print the refund form.
To Obtain a Septic Permit
A permit from Travis County is necessary prior to the installation and/or operation of an on-site sewage plant on the property (septic system).
According to the Travis County Code, court orders that embody the policies and practices of Travis County are codified and made available to the public. All of the papers shown on this page are offered solely for the convenience of Code users and do not constitute an official version of the Travis County Code. Please take notice of the following: There are several orders of the Travis County Commissioners Court that have approved and altered this section of the Travis County Code over the years, and here is a compilation of those orders.
Furthermore, in the case of a discrepancy between the language of any real order of the Travis County Commissioners Court contained in the records of the Travis County Clerk and the text of this compilation, the latter shall take precedence over the former.
PLEASE BE ADVISED that our offices have just relocated.
Thank you very much.
- Onsite Sewage Facilities
- General Information and Terminology
- Professionally Designed (Engineered) Checklist
- Chapter 448: Travis County Rules for Onsite Sewage Facilities
- Affidavit for the OSSF indicating that maintenance is required
- Information about the inspection
- A soil analysis form
We strongly urge candidates to submit their applications online through MyPermitNow.org. For further information, please contact us through email or by phone at (512) 854-4215. Our physical and mailing addresses are as follows: Travis County TNR700 Lavaca Street, 5th Floor, Suite 540P.O. Box 1748Austin, Texas 78701 Travis County TNR700 Lavaca Street, 5th Floor, Suite 540 Attn: PermitsPermits is an abbreviation for Permits. The counter is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Travis County Code: Chapter 448
Applications should be submitted online at MyPermitNow.org, since this will save time. Email or call us at (512) 854-4215 if you require further information. Both our physical and postal addresses are listed below: 540, 5th Floor, Austin, TX 78701Travis County TNR700 Lavaca Street, 5th Floor, Austin, TX 78701P.O.
Box 1748 Attn: PermitsPermits is an acronym that stands for “permits” in the legal sense. The counter is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on weekdays and on weekends.
Questions? TNR Development Services should be contacted.
The restrictions and requirements of any county, city, or other governmental orders made in response to the COVID 19 epidemic apply to any and all of the construction. The Building Guidance document, which may be found on the County’s Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information website, provides more information on permissible construction.
For the time being, the Travis County Walk-Up Permit Counter will be closed. Travis County has put all of its permitting-related activity to the internet. Contact a member of the Permission Staff at 512-854-4215 if you have any issues about your permit, or send an email to To apply for a permit, please visit Mypermitnow.org Travis County Development Services is responsible for ensuring that any development outside the corporate city borders in Travis County complies with applicable standards, regulations, and permits.
More about Development Services
There is currently no one working at the Travis County Walk-Up Permit Counter. A new online system has been implemented for all Travis County permits activities. Contact a member of the Permit Staff at 512-854-4215 if you have any issues about your permit, or send an email to To apply for a permit, please visit Mypermitnow.org. Travis County Development Services is responsible for ensuring that any development outside the corporate city borders in Travis County complies with the county’s standards, processes, and building permits requirements.
Mass Gathering Permit Information
An environmental inquiry may be carried out by any of a number of different departments and organizations. The following is a guide to help you identify who to contact regarding your concern: When water quality and storm water violations occur in unincorporated portions of the county, the Travis County Environmental Quality Program can investigate them and bring charges against those responsible. Travis County does not have the power to investigate complaints that occur within the boundaries of any city.
- Residents who reside inside the city borders can report environmental problems by dialing 311 or (512) 974-2000, respectively.
- Residents of our other towns are encouraged to call their local code enforcement officer or the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Regional Office at (512) 339-2929 for further information.
- While we cannot investigate a problem that does not fall within our jurisdiction, we can assist you in finding the appropriate government agency with the power to investigate your problem.
- For more information, visit their website.
- The Travis County Development Services department can be reached at (512) 854-9383 if your complaint involves a malfunctioning septic system, an uncontrolled or unpermitted building site, or an unlawful driveway in an unincorporated section of the county.
The LCRA may be reached at (512) 473-3200 or (800) 776-5272 if your complaint or issue is related to the Highland Lakes or the Highland Lakes Watershed Ordinance. The Highland Lakes Watershed Ordinance can be found here.
On-Site Sewage Facilities
In accordance with the Health and Safety Code, Austin Water controls On-Site Sewage Facilities (also known as septic tanks) located within the City of Austin’s entire authority and areas annexed for the purpose of implementing the code. Property owners who have water frontage on Lake Austin or any of the rivers that feed into Lake Austin are deemed to be within the authority of the City of Austin, regardless of the lot design, location of the home, or position of the drainfield on the property.
TheFull Page Interactive Map is an alternative method of getting around.
This interactive map may be used to gather the following information about the area:
- The location of your property in relation to OSSFs and if it falls under the authority of the City. If your property is inside the Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone or the Barton Springs portion, you should consult with a professional.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has allowed the City of Austin to manage the On-site Sewage Facilities (OSSF) Program, which is administered by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. TAC Ch.285 On-Site Sewage Facilities contains the regulations that govern the program, which are largely governed by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. OSSFs that are installed and operated within the authority of the City of Austin must adhere to the requirements set out inChapter 15-5 of the City Code.
Services We Provide
Licensing:Process permit applications and related payments for new and/or existing on-site sewage systems, and ensure that they are in compliance. Inspections: Inspections are carried out as part of the permitting or complaint investigation processes, among other things. Investigation of Concerns: Examine complaints about open sewage and complaints from the general population about OSSFs. Legal notices of violation and/or the possibility of judicial action are inherently associated with this practice (s).
Every service that the city provides is connected with a fee, which is evaluated annually as part of the city’s budget process. All payments are collected at the time an application for service is completed and submitted to the appropriate party. Additional payments may be necessary based on the specifics of an application, or when permits have expired and are being reactivated or renewed, among other situations. See the OSSF Fees page for a comprehensive list of charges.
Application Forms for Requesting Service
Our program’s application forms are accessible for download on the internet.
Division Contact Information
Address (Physical Location) Utility Development Services Division, OSSF Program are located at 6310 Wilhelmina Delco Drive in Austin and may be reached at the following phone numbers:
- Forms for Service Requests and Fee Payments can be obtained by calling 512-972-0050
- Inquiries about Division/Program Management can be obtained by calling 512-972-0050
- Complaints about Exposed Sewage may be obtained by calling 512-972-1000.
Basics for Septic Systems
On-site sewage facilities, also known as OSSFs, must be developed on the basis of a site evaluation that takes into consideration the specific requirements of the location. The system of choice for around 20% of new homes being built in Texas is the radon mitigation system. An On-Site Sewage Facility (OSSF), sometimes known as a “septic system,” is a sewage treatment system that is located on a property. As a result of the unexpected surge in new housing construction in suburban and rural regions, more Texas families are reliant on an OSSF for the treatment and disposal of their domestic sewage.
- Systems that accomplish their jobs well while also protecting the environment are made possible by new methods to design and oversight of OSSFs.
- A number of soil tests are ruling out traditional systems, which separate liquids from solid waste in a holding tank and then distribute them throughout a drainfield using underground pipes or other proprietary items in many regions of the state.
- However, because the majority of Texas soils are incapable of adequately absorbing contaminants, different treatment procedures are necessary.
- Any work on an OSSF must be done by a licensed installer or, in the case of a single-family property, by the homeowner himself or herself.
Who checks to make sure the requirements are followed?
On-site sewage facilities, also known as OSSFs, must be developed on the basis of a site evaluation that takes into consideration the specific circumstances of the surrounding area. The system of choice for around 20% of new homes built in Texas is the radon-free system. Septic systems, also known as On-Site Sewage Facilities (OSSFs), are a type of sewage treatment system that is installed on a property. As a result of the unexpected surge in new housing construction in suburban and rural regions, more Texas families are reliant on an OSSF for the treatment and disposal of their household sewage.
Systems that accomplish their jobs correctly while also protecting the environment are made possible by new methods to design and oversight of OSSFs.
A number of soil tests are ruling out traditional systems, which separate liquids from solid waste in a holding tank and then distribute them across the drainfield using underground pipes or other proprietary goods in many sections of Texas.
Alternative treatment procedures, however, are essential since most soils in Texas are unable to adequately absorb toxins as they should.
A licensed installer must complete any work on an OSSF, or if it is a single-family property, the work must be completed by the owner. The law requires that anybody who receives compensation for any aspect of the procedure obtain a license from the state.
All OSSFs will require maintenance at some point in their lives. Conventional anaerobic systems require the septic tank to be pumped out on a regular basis in order to remove sediments and prevent the system from backing up. It is advised that you pump your septic tank once every three to five years in order to avoid short circuiting the treatment process and causing damage. To acquire a list of registered sludge transporters in your region, go to theSludge Transporter Queryonline. Aerobic systems are more complicated and require more upkeep than anaerobic ones do.
- A number of regulatory authorities have enacted more strict rules, which may include homeowner training or even prohibiting homeowners from performing upkeep on their properties.
- In order to guarantee that the system runs appropriately, it is recommended that you contract with a licensed maintenance provider to verify, debug, and test the system as required by 30 TAC 285.91(4).
- Once every six months if the system employs an electronic monitor, automated radio, or telephone to alert the maintenance provider of system or component failure as well as to monitor the quantity of disinfection remaining in the system, reporting might be lowered to once every six months.
- If any needed repairs are not completed, the permitting authority will be notified of the failure.
- The pills are extremely reactive, and within 10 minutes, they will have killed 99 percent of the germs present in the effluent.
- AVOID USING TABLETS DESIGNED FOR SWIMMING POOL USE DUE TO THE POSSIBILITY THAT THEY MAY RELEASE A HIGHLY EXPLOSIVE GAS KNOWN AS NITROGEN CHLORIDE.
- Please contact us at (800) 447-2827.
Where can I find more information and assistance?
The Small Business and Local Government Assistance Section of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) provides free, confidential assistance to small enterprises and local governments seeking to comply with state environmental requirements.
Call us at (800) 447-2827 or visit our website at TexasEnviroHelp.org for more information.
Required, Inc. has begun assembling a collection of papers to assist our clients in determining their requirements and in assisting us in assisting you. On-site Sewage Treatment Facilities Using Conventional Absorption – Septic Standard Guide to Operation and Maintenance Septic Standard.pdf OM Guide for Mound Type On-Site Sewage Facilities-Septic Mound.pdf OM Guide for Low Pressure Dosed Trench On-Site Sewage Facilities-Septic LPD.pdf OM Guide for Low Pressure Dosed Trench On-Site Sewage Facilities-Septic LPD.pdf PDF version of the OM Guide for On-site Sewage Facilities with Aerobic Treatment Units and Spray Irrigation-Aerobic Spray.pdf document.
PDF version of the OM Guide for On-site Sewage Facilities with Aerobic Treatment Units and Low Pressure Dosed Disposal Trenches-Aerobic LPD-Aerobic LPD.pdf document.
Preparation of the On-Site Sewage Facility for Inspection-Prep Inspection.pdf Preparation of the On-Site Sewage Facility for Inspection Request Records from the Travis County Clerk’s Office (form no longer required) For digital copies of on-site sewage facility records from Travis County, send an email to [email protected] with the address of the location you’re looking for in the subject line.
Request Records from Hays County-HaysCoRcdReq.pdf (Request Records from Hays County) To get on-site sewage facility records from Hays County, please fill out this form and send it to [email protected] via email.
Resources On the Web
A list of web sites that can give further information about On-site Sewage Facilities and regulations that may apply to your system or area has been compiled by Necessary, Inc. The Water Utility’s OSSF Program was formerly known as the “Water and Wastewater Department” of the City of Austin. The LCRA’s OSSF Program was previously known as the “Water and Wastewater Department.” Engineer for the County of Williamson Williamson County’s On-Site Sewage Facilities Program is a public-private partnership.
The best way to locate a certified OSSF installer or site evaluator Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service (AM Extension Service) The material and Fact Sheets are excellent.
Scroll down to the section titled “Manuals” and click on the link.
TCAD Travis Central Appraisal District – Travis County’s official source for property information.
Bastrop County Tax Collector’s Office Bastrop County’s property records may be found here. The Appraiser’s Office for Hays County Hays Central Appraisal District is a local appraisal district in Hays, Kansas.
On-Site Sewage Facilities Program
The On-Site Sewage Facilities Program of the Louisiana Clean Water Authority covers the inspection and licensing of OSSF systems in the Highland Lakes area. Under Chapter 341 and Chapter 366 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality recognized LCRA as an authorized agency to administer its on-site sewage facility regulations and requirements under LCRA’s authority. The laws serve to keep pollution to a minimum and water quality in the Highland Lakes protected.
The OSSF program was the first water quality initiative implemented by the LCRA.
The upper Highland Lakes are monitored by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Questions, comments, and concerns can be submitted using the Contact LCRA page. More information about the complaint procedure for this program may be found here. View the complaint statistics for the year 2021. How can I file an appeal against a permit decision? Consult the LCRA On-Site Sewage Facilities Program Appeals Process for further information.
Everything You Want to Know (and Unknow) about Septic Systems in the Lake Travis Area
Septic tank system There’s nothing that shocks newcomers to the Texas Hill Country quite like those two words. While home-hunting with a friend who was not a native Texan, I overheard the realtor casually explain that “this property is on septic.” as we strolled over a gorgeous, lush grass. This was my first introduction to the state of Texas. I came to a complete stop in my steps. Is it possible that she said the words “septic system” out of nowhere, or am I hallucinating? Let’s just say that the visuals that danced through my imagination were not of sugar canes, as you might imagine.
- That was a memorable scene.
- Although many of homes on septic systems may be found in the Lake Travis region, this is not the case everywhere.
- We have multimillion-dollar lakeside houses that are run on septic systems in our community.
- For those purchasing a newer home on septic in the Lake Travis region, this isn’t a major concern since they figure, “I won’t be here in 30 years,” which is a reasonable assumption.
- Take, for example, the residences in Old Lakeway that were constructed between 1962 and 1971.
- An excellent piece written by Earl Foster, General Manager of Lakeway MUD, published in the Lakeway Voice describes this fascinating history in further detail.
They’re developing a pilot program to assist Lakeway residents in alleviating their sewer system difficulties through the use of a remedy known as ODWW (Out of District Wastewater Project).
Replacing septic is pricey
The septic tank. Newcomers to the Texas Hill Country are terrified of those two phrases more than anything else. For me, as someone who was not born and raised in Texas, I remember when my family and I were home-hunting in Lakeway, and the realtor casually stated, “this house is on septic.” while we were wandering across a really lovely and green lawn. All of a sudden, I came to a complete halt! Are the words “septic system” coming out of her mouth or am I having a dream? Let’s just say that the visuals that danced through my brain were not of sugar canes, as you might expect.
- Something along those lines occurred.
- Having a septic system does not always imply that the home is “cheap.” Septic systems are used to operate multimillion-dollar lakeside properties in our area.
- For those purchasing a newer home on septic in the Lake Travis region, this isn’t a huge concern since they figure, “I won’t be here in 30 years,” which isn’t true.
- Take, for example, the residences in Old Lakeway that were constructed between 1962 and 1972.
- This fascinating history is explained in detail in an excellent essay in the Lakeway Voice authored by Earl Foster, General Manager of Lakeway MUD.
Wait, what’s a drain field, you ask?
To keep things light and un-gross, think of it as an appealing soil absorption field to keep things from getting too heavy. Organic matter is digested and separated from floatable waste, which includes oil, grease, and other non-organic materials, by your septic system when it has finished digesting it. That interesting substance makes a brief voyage from your sewage tank to a series of amusing tubes – much like a waterslide. The tubes are the perforated pipes that are buried underground, and it is their responsibility to slowly discharge the effluent into the earth.
Wait, what’s effluent, you ask?
Effluent is often referred to as wastewater or sewage. Think of it as an awful liquid that cheerfully exits a human-made infrastructure to be recycled, to present a more appealing image. Something like a quick trip to the salon to get beautified. But, in all seriousness, it’s crap.
Back to drain fields…
The drain field performs a variety of functions, but one that you may already be aware of, even if you do not have a septic system, is that it is the area that should not be oversaturated with liquid.
It is possible for the altar scenario to occur when drain fields get overwhelmed, as previously described. Nothing works, and sewage is forced up into the yard or, in the worst case scenario, forced back out of the exact items that captured them in the first place — the toilets and sinks themselves.
Circling back to the cost
We are all aware of the importance of septic systems and how much we don’t want them to fail at any cost. However, even with the best-laid maintenance procedures, things may go wrong. The 1,230 homeowners in Old Lakeway may not be able to find a low-cost solution for their outdated system, but they will have choices. If the ODWW keeps on pace, Phases I and II should be completed within the next several years, providing inhabitants with some respite and fewer uncomfortable flushes. What about septic systems?
Please share your thoughts with us on our Facebook page.
Cathy is a content writer for businesses such as Little Remedies and Clear Eyes in addition to her position as Senior Staff Writer for Lake Travis Lifestyle.
Since 2007, she has been successfully navigating the unpredictable world of parenthood in Lakeway.
Frequently Asked Questions about Septic Systems
We are all aware of the importance of septic systems and how much we do not want them to fail at any cost. Despite this, things do go wrong, even with the best-laid maintenance programs. If you happen to be one of the 1,230 homes in Old Lakeway, you may not be able to find an inexpensive solution for your outdated system, but you will have alternatives. If the ODWW keeps on pace, Phases I and II will be finished within the next several years, providing inhabitants with some respite and fewer unpleasant flushes.
- Which emoji do you prefer: the thumbs up or the poop?
- As a nationally renowned writer, marketing nerd, and proud mother of two children, Cathy has achieved national recognition.
- As a parenting influencer, she has been featured on Babble, iVillage, SELF, Parents, and BabyCenter, among other publications.
- Her Instagram handle is @CathyATX.
- System types that are conventional include passive systems with drainfields, gravelled or stone systems, chambered system leachfields, low-pressure dosing systems, evapotranspiration systems, and aerobic wastewater treatment systems.
Questions Applicable to All Types of Septic Systems
Is it necessary for me to seek a permit in order to repair my septic system? Yes. Repairing any form of septic system in Texas requires a permit that has been granted by the state, with limited exceptions. In order to ensure that the individual performing the repairs has sufficient expertise and knows the proper methods and protocols for fixing the system, this law was enacted. Environmental protection, as well as the protection of the homeowner and his neighbors, are the goals of the law. What is the procedure for getting a permit for a repair or an installation?
- The kind of soil, the location of the system in relation to creeks, rivers, lakes, and property lines, as well as the type of septic system to be repaired or rebuilt, as well as the installation or repair plan, are all taken into consideration in the permit application.
- In light of the possible problems associated with acquiring permits, the majority of service providers ask that the homeowner complete and submit the application on their behalf.
- Is it safe to flush toilet paper down the toilet?
- Based on the number of bedrooms in the house, the size of the holding tank is determined.
- Because of this, using toilet paper should not pose an issue as long as the system is not needed to process more wastewater than it was designed to manage.
In what intervals do I require pumping of my system? This answer is dependent on the size of the system as well as the amount of individuals that are utilizing the system to provide it. For the average household, the answer is every three to five years, depending on the circumstances.
|Household size (number of people)|
|Tank Size (gallons)||Duration (in years) Between Pumpings or Inspections|
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality contributed the information in the table above. Is it necessary for me to add any supplements to my system? The majority of the time, additives are not required to keep a well functioning septic system running. However, there are occasions when a system becomes overwhelmed with organic material, and the enzymes and bacteria found in additives might actually be beneficial. The possibility of this occurring arises when a system is temporarily forced to process more garbage than it was designed to handle, as in the case of repeated big parties or an influx of guests for a prolonged period of time.
Flooding Related Questions Applicable to All Types of Septic Systems
Water overflowing from a traditional drain field might cause a septic system to flood if the field has been saturated by rain or rising stream, creek, or river water. Flooding happens in an aerobic system when the aerobic tanks become overflowing with runoff rain water and the system ceases to operate. In any instance, the first indicator that there is a problem is generally the fact that the toilets are no longer flushing correctly. In addition, because shower and bath drains are typically positioned at the lowest gravity point in the home, raw sewage may back up into these drains first.
- Whenever a typical drain field becomes saturated with rain or rising stream, creek, or river water, a septic system floods, this is known as septic system flooding. Flooding happens in an aerobic system when the aerobic tanks become overflowing with runoff rain water and the system ceases to operate as a consequence. In any instance, the first sign of a problem is generally the fact that the toilets are no longer flushing correctly. In addition, because they are often positioned at the lowest gravity point in the home, raw sewage may back up into shower and bath drains first, causing flooding. When dealing with a flooded septic system, it is normal practice to follow the following measures. If I have a suspicion that my septic system is flooding, what should I do?
What should I do once the floodwaters have receded from my home?
- If you have an in-ground well, wait until the water has been tested by your county health agency before drinking it. Please refrain from making use of your sewer system until the water level in your soil absorption field is lower than any water level everywhere else in your home. If you feel that your septic tank has been damaged, you should get it professionally inspected and maintained. Damage can be detected by the presence of apparent settling or settlement of the ground above the tank, as well as the incapacity of the system to absorb extra water. Because most septic systems are below ground and entirely protected, flooding does not do significant harm to them. Septic tanks and pump chambers, on the other hand, can get clogged with silt and dirt, necessitating their cleaning. A new system may be required if the soil absorption field becomes clogged with silt due to the fact that there is no practical means to clear up the buried lines in an absorption field. In order to avoid the risk of harmful gases and germs being released into the environment, get your tanks fixed or cleaned by skilled professionals. Cleaning and disinfecting the basement floor should be done if sewage has backed up into the space. A chlorine solution containing half a cup of chlorine bleach per gallon of water should be used.
Questions Specific to Aerobic Wastewater Treatement Systems
What is the process for renewing my Aerobic System maintenance contract? Upon installation, each aerobic system is accompanied with a complimentary two-year maintenance contract, which begins the day after the installation procedure is complete. The installation business is first responsible for providing this service. Because most systems are reasonably simple to maintain during their first two years of operation, several installers do not provide maintenance services after that initial two-year period.
- Every year after you sign a maintenance contract with Septic Solutions, your agreement will be automatically renewed.
- The homeowner is responsible for all costs related with maintenance, chlorine, and pumping (as needed) of the pool.
- Our customers may select the contract that is most appropriate for their needs.
- The following activities are carried out during a normal maintenance visit: This will differ depending on the service provider.
- Aside from that, we also examine the amount of sludge in your holding tank.
- What role do the air and water pumps play in an aerobic system, and how significant are they?
- The air pump is used to aerate the wastewater and speed up the breakdown processes in the wastewater treatment plant.
If one of these systems fails to function correctly, the wastewater will become septic.
Is the water that is released from an aerobic system safe to consume?
Before the water is sprayed via the spray field, it is treated to destroy or eradicate germs, and then it is discharged again.
How much does chlorine cost on an annual basis?
We give our clients the option of installing a Smart=Chlor Liquid Chlorinator, which may be run at a far lower cost of chlorine than a traditional liquid chlorinator.
The most common causes of aerobic system odors are: 1) an excessive amount of chemicals being introduced into the system, 2) the presence of a restriction in the air supply, 3) more wastewater being introduced into the system than the system was designed to handle, and 4) an insufficient supply of disinfectant.
When should I add chlorine to my water?
You should keep an eye on your system to ensure that there are always a minimum of 2-3 chlorine pills in the tube at any one moment.
According to Texas law, homeowners are permitted to maintain their own wastewater systems if they have completed a 6-hour, state-approved Basic Wastewater Operations Course, passed the state test, obtained a Class D Wastewater Certificate, and obtained a certification from the manufacturer of their specific wastewater system.
Given the time commitments required to obtain a certificate, the inherent unpleasantness of checking sludge levels, and the requirement that only licensed septic providers perform all necessary repairs, the majority of customers prefer to have their system’s maintenance performed under contract with a certified sewer contractor.
Questions Specific to Non-Aerobic Wastewater Systems
What is the best way to determine the source of a problem with my non-aerobic septic system? On our website, we provide a diagnostic tool that will assist you in identifying the portion of your system that is causing the problem. Septic Solutions of Texas retains ownership of the copyright and reserves all rights.
Travis County commissioners facing septic problems
Michael Kanin published a blog entry on Monday, October 11, 2010. It is estimated that up to 90 percent of Travis County’s septic systems may be out of compliance with state laws, according to local engineerSteve Wenzel. Whether or not his evidence is correct, the Travis County Commissioners Court continues to receive variance requests from property owners who have systems in place that are in violation of the laws and regulations. The most recent of these was released just a few days ago. Faced with the dangers of creating a precedent in a field where they have little jurisdiction, the three commissioners in attendance unanimously voted to deny relief to two homeowners in two consecutive votes, despite their reservations.
Due to the limitations of the authority held by Texas counties, the court will have to hear each of the cases one at a time, rather than all at once.
Precinct 2 Commissioner Sarah Eckhardt stated, “This is essentially a problem of an urbanizing county in which septic is becoming less and less of a viable alternative.” The first instance concerned a septic field that was intended to serve a home that was far smaller than the one that was ultimately built on the property in issue.
- County officials asked the court to deny the request for a variance.
- Additionally, Scheffel stated that, should the homeowners decide not to replace their septic system, the county would be unlikely to initiate any enforcement steps unless there was a leak in the system.
- An investigation into a septic drain field that was built dangerously close to a broken rock formation was conducted in the second case, which raised the possibility of groundwater pollution.
- Since then, the drain field has been in situ without a county operating license or a valid authorization from the city.
- “When we first started looking for systems that could be running in violation of the law or without a valid operating license, there were about 2000 of them” (units).
- “As a result, a significant number of people have undertaken costly repairs.
- “State legislation has given us the ability to be more proactive than we have been in the past,” she explained.
- According to her, “Even the State of Texas realizes that a drain field or a septic system in an urbanizing county (is not acceptable).” Having a wider drain field implies having a larger lot, which means that you won’t be able to put septic where we’ve done it in the past,” says the expert.
Because of the findings made by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality regarding water quality, “we were able to go in and conduct a combined TCEQ, Travis County, and City of Austin sweep through the Gilleland Creek Watershed looking for septic systems that were not up to code and could be contributing to the presence of e.coli and coliform in (the water).” Nonetheless, the county’s authority is limited.
In his statement, Eckhardt stated that “we do not have the right to prohibit the use of septic tanks in a more rigorous manner than state law permits.” As more septic systems are found to be unsatisfactory, Eckhardt believes that the situation will only become worse in the future.
“There are a significant number of impoverished people in our county.
When we discover that their septic system is deteriorating, they will want assistance in either replacing their septic system or converting their community to a consolidated sewage system.” She singled out Northridge Acres, a neighborhood on the border of Williamson and Travis counties that has been plagued by extensive septic problems for at least a decade as an example.
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A big problem for low-income homeowners: septic tanks
Jack Craver posted on Monday, April 1, 2019 Living in rural Travis County is often less expensive than living in the city of Austin, for the most part. Land values, property taxes, and rental rates have all fallen dramatically in recent years. Sewage, on the other hand, is frequently substantially more expensive. As a result of the widespread nature of the problems and costs associated with aging septic tanks, Travis County has begun to devote a significant portion of funds received from the federal Community Development Block Grant program to assisting low-income homeowners in repairing or replacing their systems in recent years.
- The help is only accessible to homeowners who earn no more than 80 percent of the regional median income.
- The county spent $2.56 million on house repair between 2012 and 2018, accounting for 38 percent of the total CDBG money.
- According to Christy Moffett, the CDBG program manager for Travis County, “we discovered that a large number of families who required house repair were experiencing a great deal of difficulty with their septic system.” “We set aside money just for septic systems.
- The Travis County grant is intended to benefit unincorporated areas of the county as well as the small towns of Webberville and San Leanna, which do not get grants of their own from the federal government.
- Those living in unincorporated regions, on the other hand, are frequently left to fend for themselves through the use of septic systems.
- Former housing advocate Stuart Hersh urged the CDBG commissioners to preserve house and septic repair as high priorities for CDBG monies, which they agreed to do.
- He pointed out that the neighborhood is fast growing.
- Traditional county administration has had no part in the provision of those services.
- She believes that the county will need to recruit additional “partners,” such as the city of Austin, in order to go forward.
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