Land Use Planning Information>Septic Systems>Installing a Septic System

Installing a Septic System

Before installing a septic system, home owners and businesses must obtain a permit from the local health department. Department sanitarians will examine the soil to assure that it is capable of absorbing and properly treating the wastewater.
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In addition to the septic tank, these systems often require the installation of a distribution box and pump system to move the "gray water" to a drain field or "tile field." As shown, the tile field is a series of shallow trenches carefully constructed to assure the proper slopes for each drain pipe.

Most tile fields are constructed of heavy gauge plastic pipe fitted and cemented together. The holes along the length of the pipe allow the gray water to run out evenly along the gravel base.

Once the tank, distribution box and tile field are properly installed, a county health department official inspects and approves the system. Following approval, the "envelope" of gravel around the pipes can be completed. In many locations, straw is used to cover the gravel and keep it free of sand and silt.

Finally, the trenches can be "backfilled." See the other InfoFiles for more information on how septic systems work and where they should be located.

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