Septic Tank Inspections: What to Expect
If you have a septic tank on your property, it is liable to inspections from local government authorities. Local authorities are required to routinely check septic tank water waste systems to ensure that they are not causing a hazard to public health. These won’t be surprise inspections, and you will be notified in advance so you must ensure that you are prepared in every way possible for your septic tank inspection.
Preparing for Your Septic Tank Inspection
In advance of the inspection, you should ensure that you have all relevant documentation ready for inspection should the inspection team request it. This includes any documentation relating to the installation or maintenance that was carried out by certified contractors. You will need to know where your registration certificate is as this is the one important document that you may be requested to produce. You will of course need to be able to direct the inspector to the exact location of your septic tank too. If you are not sure where it is, consult the plans of your house or get in touch with your maintenance contractor.
So What Happens When the Inspector Arrives?
As previously mentioned, when the inspector arrives to your property, they may request to see all relevant documentation relating to your wastewater systems. The inspector should be able to provide appropriate identification. If they are unable to do so, you are entitled to refuse the inspection. If they are able to appropriately identify themselves, they may then ask you to direct them to the location of your septic tank. The test itself will usually involves 4 key checks:
Leaks & Blockages
The local authority inspector will check all pipes for leaks and ensure that there is a safe level of sludge in the tank.
The drain leading to the tank will be inspected to ensure that wastewater is entering the system and being treated correctly. The inspector will also ensure that additional water is not entering the tank.
The percolation area around the tank will be inspected for any excess pools of water which can indicate a blockage. Any hedges or drains near the percolation area will also be checked for signs of illegal dumping of wastewater.
The inspector will look out for any strange odours coming from the septic tanks or the percolation area. They may also monitor the tank, pipes and drains for any irregular noises.
After The Inspection is Complete
Usually if any irregularities or issues are spotted during an inspection, the inspector will alert you immediately. A full report of the findings will be issued accompanied by a list of recommended remedies. It is then up to you to remedy any issues and schedule another inspection. There will usually be a specified time period in which you must have any issues remedied. You will have to have any issues seen to by an experienced professional contractor.
If the inspector does not find any problems with your tank, a compliance report will be issued to you within a short period of time after the inspection. Once you ensure to keep maintaining your septic tank, all should be okay until your next inspection!