When Do I Need Dhec To Approve A Septic Tank? (Correct answer)

  • If you live in an area that does not have a local inspection ordinance in place, the only time you would be required to have your septic system inspected is when you’re building a new home that will use a septic system. DHEC must evaluate the home building site before issuing you a permit to construct the septic system.

Do I need a DHEC license?

Health care Providers, Private Citizens Needing Permits If you are an individual (rather than a business) and you need a permit from DHEC to build a dock, private well, septic tank, pond, coastal home, etc., visit our Citizen (Non-Business) Permits Issued by DHEC page.

Do all septic tanks need to be registered?

Until recently, it was necessary for all septic tanks to be registered. A septic tank discharges water into the ground, and the quantity of such is important so as to avoid damage to the environment. If your septic tank discharges two cubic metres or less above ground, then you don’t need to register it.

Can I install my own septic system in South Carolina?

If you are planning to build a home or place a manufactured home on property not served by a public or community sewer system, you must first obtain DHEC’s approval and a permit to install a septic system. Without this permit, your county will not be able to issue you a building permit.

What are the new septic tank regulations?

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.

Is South Carolina a certificate of need state?

South Carolina eliminated its Certificate of Need program after state senators voted overwhelmingly to get rid of the requirement Tuesday. The 35-6 vote sends the bill to the House. 2

Is SC A con State?

South Carolina is among 35 states that rely on a Certificate of Need (CON) process to expand, build or add certain medical services. The state’s hospitals and health systems believe that a fair and reasonable CON program is critical to ensuring that everyone has access to care when they need it.

Do septic tanks require planning permission?

The short answer is yes. You will need planning permission from a local authority in order to have a septic tank installed, no matter if it’s at your own home or on a business site.

Do I need consent to discharge septic tank?

You will require a ‘Permit to Discharge’, however you may qualify for an exempt status if your system meets certain requirements such as amount of discharge, septic tank or sewage treatment plant model (only EN 12566-3 2005 Certified plants accepted), plant location, intended discharge point, installation and

Are septic tanks legal UK?

The legislation of septic tanks started in 2010. Septic tank regulations 2015 dictate the way septic tanks are controlled in England, improving water quality and safeguarding the environment. If your septic system was installed and discharging before this date, you’ve what is known as ‘existing discharge.

How much does a septic system cost in South Carolina?

A new septic tank system costs $3,918 to install on average, with prices ranging from $1,500 to upward of $5,000. Most homeowners spend between $3,280 and $5,040 for a 1,250-gallon system that supports 3 or 4 bedrooms.

How much does a perk test cost in SC?

Perc testing typically costs $750 to $1,850 or $1,300 on average. On the high end, you might pay as much as $3,000 depending on local regulation and the size of the leach field or infiltration basin needed. A basic assessment costs $150 to $300 for a hand dug hole without specialized equipment.

What is a perk test for septic?

Perc tests determine the right and wrong locations for a septic system, and they’re often required by local jurisdictions before a new one can be built or an old one replaced. That’s because septic tanks work by holding wastewater long enough to naturally separate liquids and solids.

Can you sell a house with an old septic tank?

If you’re selling a property with a septic tank, then you must be transparent with buyers about the fact the property uses a one and provide a detailed specification of the system. In fact, You are required by law to inform a buyer in writing about the presence of a septic tank.

What are the do’s and don’ts of a septic tank?

DON’T flush material that will not easily decompose, such as hair, diapers, cigarette butts, matches, or feminine hygiene products. DO conserve water to avoid overloading the system. They kill the bacteria needed to decompose wastes in the septic tank and drain field. DO use substitutes for household hazardous waste.

What are signs of septic tank problems?

7 Warning Signs Your Septic System Is Failing

  • Gurgling Pipes. They would occur when you run water in the house (e.g. when using the sink or shower) or flush the toilet.
  • Bad Odours. It’s never a pleasant experience when this occurs.
  • Water At Ground Level.
  • Green Grass.
  • Slow Drainage.
  • Blocked Pipes.

Site Inspections

Following the submission of an application for a permit to construct a septic tank for a new residence, you must do the following:

  1. A DHEC inspector will assess your property to establish whether or not the site is appropriate for a septic tank. The inspector will look at the following factors:
  • Soil type is important since only certain types of soil are suitable for septic systems. Slope of the property to determine if a septic tank may be installed and how the system should be constructed
  • This includes the number of bedrooms in the proposed house plan, which is used to calculate the size of the septic system required
  • The location of private wells on or near the site, the location of property lines, surface waters, buildings, drainage ditches, and the planned house footprint, driveway, and outbuildings
  • And other factors. Our inspector will measure distances and factor in necessary margins to determine whether or not there is adequate space to construct the septic tank and drainfield.
  1. If the property is appropriate for the installation of a septic system, our inspector will issue a building permit
  2. If he or she determines that the land is unsuitable, they will explore alternative possibilities with the owner. Our inspector will return to the site once the septic system has been constructed to inspect the installation of the septic system. You will be issued a construction/operation permission if it fulfills state criteria
  3. Otherwise, you will not be issued a permit.

Soil: Most Important Factor

Our inspector will take a minimum of two soil samples (borings) in the region where the septic system is most likely to be installed before making a recommendation. We categorize soils according to their characteristics:

  • The color indicates how high the water table rises at the wettest season of the year (this is visible regardless of the month). Texture indicates how quickly water will travel through soil layers and how well the soil will “treat” or filter wastewater. We match your soil to a color chip in our field book
  • Color indicates how quickly water will move through soil layers. The number of sand, silt, and clay particles in each texture is measured and classified by hand, as is the amount of each particle. A drainfield with a high clay content is required on a considerably greater scale than a drainfield with a high sand content.

We have to deny down licenses from time to time because the soil is simply not appropriate. The placement of a house and outbuildings comes second to locating adequate soil for a septic system in the case of a new home construction project. The amount of bedrooms you can have in your home may possibly be restricted as a result of this.

Drainfield Size

Another issue that we encounter from time to time is that there is simply not enough suitable land available on a specific lot to accommodate the construction of a properly sized septic tank and drainfield. We use the following standard formula to determine the size of the drainfield that will be required:

  • Approximately 60 gallons of wastewater are generated everyday by the average South Carolinian (this includes showers, toilet flushes, and other household activities). We anticipate that each bedroom in the house will at some point be shared by two people, who will create a total of around 120 gallons of wastewater each day between them. Using the formula 120 (gallons of wastewater) divided by the number of bedrooms, we can obtain a realistic estimate for the average daily volume of wastewater (or hydraulic load) that a septic system will be required to manage.

A drainfield large enough to manage approximately 360 gallons of wastewater per day is required for a typical three-bedroom home (3 bedrooms x 120 gallons).

Never Underestimate Number of Occupants

Do not under- or over-estimate the number of bedrooms in your home or the number of people who will be living there when applying for a septic tank construction permit. If you do, you are putting your septic system at risk of collapse and putting yourself at risk of incurring significant future expenditures.


No. In reality, certain chemicals or therapies may cause more harm than benefit to your system, and may even speed the demise of your system. Some jurisdictions have outright prohibited their usage.

  • The use of additives does not obviate the necessity for regular pumping and maintenance of your septic tank, despite claims made in advertising. A number of products may simply push solids and grease from your tank into the drainfield, where they can cause the most damage by clogging up the air spaces between gravel and soil particles, slowing and eventually stopping the cleansing of wastewater
  • Others may simply push solids and grease from your tank into the drainfield. In order to reestablish the bacterial equilibrium of a septic tank, no biological additions are required because bacteria already exist in human excrement. Contrary to popular belief, you should never put yeast, dead animals, or raw flesh to your aquarium. Use caution when adding chemical additions, such as caustic hydroxides and sulfuric acid, as they can kill beneficial microorganisms in the tank and affect its capacity to absorb or treat liquids
  • They can also contaminate groundwater.

Will DHEC use a percolation or ‘perc’ test to determine if my property will work for a septic tank?

No, we haven’t utilized these tests since the late 1970s since they aren’t particularly accurate when it comes to evaluating septic system installation locations. Perc tests are used to determine how quickly water will drain out of a hole once it has been poured in. An area that passes the perc test during the dry season but fails the perc test during a wet stretch, when the water table is closer to the ground surface, is known as a saturated zone. Some locations in South Carolina have passed perc testing in the past, but have ended up having septic systems that are unable to function effectively during wet seasons.

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Will DHEC inspect my septic tank upon request?

No, you’ll need to engage a qualified septic system professional to examine your system before you can proceed. The majority of your queries will be answered by our knowledgeable staff, who may also be able to provide some useful technical assistance.

Am I legally required to have my septic system inspected regularly?

While South Carolina law does not mandate property owners to have existing systems evaluated, several municipalities have approved legislation requiring their homeowners to have their septic systems tested on a regular basis (See next question). For those who reside in an area where there is no municipal inspection legislation in effect, the only time you would be compelled to have your septic system examined would be when you are planning to build a new house that will make use of a septic system.

The Department of Health and Human Services (DHEC) must examine the house development site before awarding you a permit to install the septic system. You will not be able to acquire a county building permit until you have this permission.

What kinds of inspection requirements may be found in local ordinances?

Local rules differ, and some impose greater responsibilities on septic tank owners than others. For example, some municipal rules demand an inspection if you wish to make changes to the size or designated use of your house in a way that might potentially put more strain on the septic system. If you want to do this, contact your local building department. Suppose you are remodeling your two-bedroom house into a four-bedroom home or connecting your home to a system that was initially intended for a restricted usage office building as an example.

Why should I spend the money to have my system inspected regularly if not required by law?

Regular inspections detect problems early, allowing you to correct them before they have a negative impact on your family’s health, become significantly more expensive to repair, cause environmental damage, or place you in a legal liability position.

What is an alternative septic system, and are they legal in South Carolina?

Alternative systems make advantage of more recent technologies. Some people choose to treat wastewater with sand, peat, or plastic instead of soil. Others make use of wetlands, lagoons, aerators, or disinfection systems to combat the problem. A variety of electrical and mechanical components such as float switches, pumps, and other similar devices are frequently employed in alternative systems. Alternative systems need more regular and meticulous maintenance, but they can occasionally be used to establish a septic tank on land that does not have soils suited for typical septic systems or when the subterranean water level is too high for a traditional system to function properly.

Will a high-efficiency toilet help my septic system work better?

Toilets account for anywhere between one-fourth and one-third of total home water use. The majority of typical toilets in older homes consume 3.5 to 5 gallons of water every flush on average. Toilets that are modern and high efficiency consume 1.6 gallons or less of water every flush. The installation of a high efficiency toilet might alleviate your concerns about your septic system being swamped by domestic water. Placing a block in the toilet tank of an older toilet can also help to reduce the amount of water used for every flush.


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Permits, Licenses and Reports

If you pick an accelerated alternative, please tell the office with your selection of options as soon as possible. Fee for application: $150

  • Step 1: Read and completely complete the Onsite Wastewater System Applicationand send it to your local Environmental Affairs Office. Step 2: An original plat or deed of the land will also be required to be submitted. If you do not have a copy of the plat or deed, you may learn more about how to get one by clicking here. The office will contact you as soon as your application has been received to confirm receipt of your application and to discuss electronic payment alternatives with you. We do not take cash as a form of payment. Please see this sample application, Onsite Wastewater System Application, for a reference guide on how to complete the application. Step 2: Your application will be examined to ensure that all required material has been submitted and is in order. If everything is in order, your application fee will be accepted
  • Otherwise, it will be rejected. Step 3:If a site visit is necessary, the inspector will assess the appropriateness of the property for the installation of a septic system. If the inspector finds that your site is suitable for a typical septic system, he or she will give you with a Permit to Construct document. The inspector will discuss possible solutions with you if the permit is not approved by the inspection team. A request for test pits may be made by the Department in circumstances where the evaluator meets a barrier during the first site evaluation or in cases where it is recognized that an area would require test pits owing to the soil characteristics of the region. The midlands and upstate parts of the state are the most typical locations where soil characteristics necessitate the use of test pits. It is important to note that test pits may not be an option in coastal and sandy locations around the state. Consult with your local office staff for more detailed information on your individual situation. As soon as you have received your Permit to Construct, you should call a professional onsite wastewater system contractor to complete the installation of your septic tank. In Step 5, the installer must call DHEC in order to schedule a time for the septic system to be inspected before it is covered, before completing the septic system installation. After waiting 30 minutes over the scheduled time for a DHEC inspector, a licensed installer has the option to conduct a self-inspection of the installation to ensure that everything is in working order. The installation is required to provide documentation to the Department on the DHEC-approved formD-3978, Contractor Approval to Operate

Expires and modifications to permits: Permits to Construct are valid for five years. If you want to renew your permission after five years, or if you want to make modifications to it after it has been authorized, you must submit a new application and pay the price once again. These regulations authorize the charge and permission in the following ways:

  • Regulation 61-56, Onsite Wastewater Systems
  • Regulation 61-55, Septic Tank Site Evaluation Fees
  • And Regulation 61-56, Onsite Wastewater Systems

Because improperly designed septic systems can degrade water quality and cause illness, South Carolina law mandates that all septic systems have site approvals and permits before they can be installed. If you want to construct a home or relocate a prefabricated home on land that is not served by a public or municipal sewer system, you must first seek clearance from the Department of Health and Human Services and a permit to install a septic system. You will be unable to obtain a building permit until you obtain this permit from your local government.

  • Depending on how saturated the soil is, we may not be able to conduct a thorough examination.
  • This is analogous to farmers being forced to postpone the planting or harvesting of their crops.
  • To submit an application for a septic system, you must first download and complete anonsite wastewater application, which you must then submit to your local Environmental Affairs Office.
  • If you have any questions, please contact the Environmental Affairs Office in your area for assistance.

The Department of Health and Human Services requires that you be licensed and renew your license every year if you build, clean, or repair septic systems or if you truck and dispose of sewage from septic systems and portable toilets.

Application Form

Complete the application for a License to Construct or Clean Onsite Wastewater Systems and Self-Contained Toilets by downloading and completing the form. Please contact your local Department of Health and Human Services Environmental Affairs office to make preparations for testing if you are interested in becoming a septic system installation.

License Fees

The following costs are required for onsite wastewater system installations, pumpers/haulers, and pumpers/haulers are required for yearly renewal:

  • Licensing fees for construction are $100, cleaning fees are $100, and a combined construction and cleaning fee is $150
  • A Master Contractor license is $200.

Building permits cost $100; cleaning permits cost $100; building permits and cleaning permits cost $150; Master Contractor permits cost $200.

Installer and Master Contractor Exams

In order to be approved to construct work with septic systems and/or wastewater disposal, as well as for a Master Contractor license, you must first pass an exam that assesses your knowledge of Regulation 61-56, which is available online. To pass, you must have an 80 percent or higher score. If you do not pass this test on the first try, you can repeat it within 30 days of failing. If you fail the test a second time, you can repeat it after 60 days if you have not passed the first time. You will not be required to repeat the exam once you have been granted a license, provided that you continue to pay the yearly license renewal costs and submit all required paperwork.

Other License Requirements

  • Inspection of Vehicles: The Department of Health and Human Services has the authority to examine any vehicles used to pump and convey sewage. You must keep your vehicle inventory list up to current and on file with the Department of Health and Human Services
  • List of Disposal Facilities Is Required : This includes a list of sewage disposal facilities that you intend to use, together with documented approval from the facilities themselves. It is necessary to keep a record of your activities: You must keep a log (record) of each pumping and disposal load that is transported by each truck. You must make this record of actions accessible to the Department of Health and Human Services upon request.
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The following regulations permit the issuance of septic system contractor licenses:

  • Regulation 61-56, Onsite Wastewater Systems
  • Regulation 61-56.1, Permit to Construct or Clean Onsite Sewage Treatment and Disposal Systems and Self-Contained Toilets
  • And Regulation 61-56, Onsite Wastewater Systems Licensing of Onsite Wastewater Systems Master Contractors (Regulation 61-56.2)


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Septic Tanks

A septic system is comprised of two components: a tank and a drainfield. It is intended to treat and dispose of residential wastewater through the use of a mix of naturally occurring processes. When properly designed and maintained, a septic system may help to keep effluent away from the environment and safe to use.

Why are Septic Systems Necessary?

The proper treatment and disposal of residential wastewater safeguards public health and the environment, while also reducing the contamination of drinking water and the spread of infectious diseases. It is not always possible to obtain a connection to a wastewater treatment facility (i.e. rural areas, small communities).

How Does a Septic System Work?

  1. The wastewater from the home is flushed
  2. Wastewater is channeled into the septic tank, which holds it. Solids, both heavy and light, are broken down by bacteria that live in the septic tank, resulting in the formation of the scum and sludge layer. In the tank, wastewater drains out and onto the drainfield (the scum and sludge layers stay in the tank). During the drainfield’s natural decomposition process, wastewater is absorbed by the soil and broken down by natural processes.

Septic systems, as well as private wells, are the responsibility of the homeowner. It is possible for an improperly used or maintained septic tank system to have a negative impact on an entire community by causing one or more of the following problems: a breeding ground for mosquitoes and other insects, offensive odors, costly damage caused by sewage backing up into a home, the spread of serious diseases, and pollution of groundwater and surface water, as well as rivers and lakes.

How to Apply for a Septic System permit?

For information on how to submit an application for a septic system permit, please see our Permits, Licenses, and Reportssection.

South Carolina’s Challenge

Poor maintenance is a common cause of septic system failure, which affects around 5% of all systems.

Keep yours from becoming one of them by learning how your septic system works and how to properly maintain it.


Overview Septic Alerts for Septic Tanks Across the State

How Long Will the Permitting Process Take?

It is difficult to provide a definitive response to this issue with perfect assurance. Many factors impact the length of time it takes to complete the permitting procedure, including:

  • The quality of the application that you submit is as follows: A large number of the applications we get are incomplete in some way. This always results in a request for further information from our end, which we always fulfill. Because the request and response cycle can occur many times throughout a single permit application procedure, it has the potential to extend the overall time it takes to issue a permit decision by days, weeks or even months. The fact that you submitted an incomplete application package does not guarantee you a spot in line, so to speak
  • The simplicity or complexity of the project, activity, or enterprise that has been granted approval
  • Concerns expressed by members of the community concerning the project, activity, or company
  • The fact that it is located in an environmentally sensitive location Staffing levels at the Department of Health and Human Services
  • Number of permit applications we get in a specific period of time

Planning Time Frames

According to the most recent data available, about 80% of new permit applications were completed in 2013 quicker than the time ranges given below. The time periods mentioned are in total calendar days and include the time it generally takes for applicants to furnish all of the required information to complete the application. For planning purposes, you may wish to base your expectations on the time ranges listed below, with a little extra time built in for contingencies. Keep in mind that the more thorough your application is when you submit it, the quicker the permission procedure will be completed.

  • Consultations with DHEC (and, if applicable, with your consultant, if you engage one) early in the planning phase can assist you in developing a realistic project time timeline for your project.
  • Chart can be printed or seen in a bigger format.
  • While the Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHEC) makes every effort to fulfill the time constraints for reviewing new permit applications set out in R.61-30, “Environmental Protections Fees,” events beyond DHEC’s control may cause delays.
  • DHEC

Need More Than One Permit?

You should speak with us as soon as possible if you will require more than one permission. This is especially crucial if you will require several permits.

Applying for a Permit, License, Certification or Registration from DHEC

Taking sound, responsible public health and environmental decisions is essential to building and maintaining a strong, profitable business. If your new business or expansion has the potential to have an adverse impact on public health or the environment in South Carolina, you will almost certainly require a permit from the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). It is possible that you may require many permissions, licenses, or registrations before you can start or develop your firm.

Talk to DHEC about your business goals as soon as possible.

We wish to collaborate closely with you in order to assist you in moving through the permitting process as swiftly as we can.

Health care Providers, Private Citizens Needing Permits

  • We have a webpage dedicated to health care regulations that you may visit if you are a healthcare practitioner and want to learn about extra (non-construction-related) regulatory obligations
  • In the event that you are an individual (rather than an organization) and require a permit from DHEC to construct a dock, private well, septic tank, pond, coastal house, or other structure, please see ourCitizen (Non-Business) Permits Issued by DHECpage.



Before You Buy Land

Are you interested in purchasing land for your future home?

To find out if water and sewer services are available, contact your local government.

  • A septic system will be required if there is no public sewer system available. If there is no public water available, you will need to drill a home well.

Make Sure There is Space to Meet Required Separation Distances

The quantity of area required for a septic system varies depending on the soil qualities and the size of the residence. Soil types such as sandy soils and clay soils require different amounts of space for a septic system. The same is true when comparing a three-bedroom house to a six-bedroom house: the septic system for the six-bedroom house will require more area than the septic system for the three-bedroom house. The following distances between your septic system and the following items should be taken into consideration.

  • Buildings are 5 feet apart
  • The property line is 5 feet apart
  • A private well is 75 feet away
  • A public well is 100 feet away
  • Surface water is 75 feet away
  • And a drainage ditch is 25 feet away.

Potential Problem Signs

Whenever you are looking for a home, pay close attention to any features that can interfere with the installation or operation of an on-site septic system.

  • Is there any rough terrain on the property? The presence of bedrock near the ground surface may render the area unsuitable for the installation of a septic system. Exist gorges, ravines, very steep slopes, or other harsh topographical features
  • And The terrain is susceptible to flooding, is this true? Whether or not there are any rivers or streams in close proximity to the property that may flood. Does the land appear to be damp or to be retaining water? Does it appear like surface drainage is a problem? Is there any water on the property that has been classified as jurisdictional wetlands? If you are unclear, you should consult with the US Army Corps of Engineers or the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services’ Ocean and Coastal Resource Management. Do you have fill dirt on your land in certain areas?

What happens if a conventional or alternative standard system can’t be issued?

Regulation 61-56 specifies that if the property does not satisfy conventional or alternative septic system criteria as described in the regulation, you will be given a list of choices to consider. A professional engineer and a soil scientist can be brought in to analyze the land to decide whether or not it can sustain a specialized or designed system. This is one of the possibilities to consider (referred to as the 610 standard). It is possible that these systems may cost tens of thousands of dollars more than a typical system, and that they will also require wider separation lengths than those stated previously.

Know before you buy!

There are a few solutions available if the previous homeowner failed to supply this critical information or if you have misplaced your original copy:

  • Your local DHEC office may have a copy of your building permit on file if your house was built within the last five years or fewer, according to the DHEC. A copy of a septic tank permit can be obtained from the local office by any individual or group, regardless of whether or not they own the land in question. Because of this, it is highly recommended that you have as much of the following information as possible ready at the time of your request.
  • Number of the tax map
  • Lot number
  • Block number
  • Address in the physical world
  • When the system was installed or when the house was built (if this information is available)
  • Name of the original permit holder (if any information is available)
  • Name of the subdivision (if the property is located within a subdivision)
  • You may also submit a request for a copy of the permission through our Freedom of Information office, although this is not mandatory. To obtain a copy through the Freedom of Information Office, please complete and submit a copy of the DHEC FOI form. Instructions are given with the application. If feasible, please include the information about the property that is stated above. When looking around your yard, search for manhole covers or lids that have been buried by grass or leaves if your house was constructed before 1990.
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Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a permit set you back? District Health Department No. 2 provides a wide range of services for which licenses and fees are required. Any permit’s current cost may be determined by referring to the fee schedule on this page or contacting the District Health Department No. 2 office in your area. How long does it take to have a permit approved or denied? Site assessments will be done within eight (8) business days of receipt of the application and cost, in accordance with the rules of District Health Department No.

  1. It is possible that this period will vary owing to a variety of reasons such as incomplete applications, the complexity of the project, the participation of other authorities, and harsh weather conditions.
  2. What is the procedure for obtaining a “perc test?” A “perc test” is a broad phrase that refers to the soil assessment that is performed during a vacant land or septic permit site examination, among other things.
  3. An individual must submit a completed application along with the required money to the health department, which will then conduct the site evaluation that has been requested by the individual.
  4. Both forms of assessments are carried out in the same manner as one another.

The primary difference is that, if approved, a septic permit evaluation authorizes the construction of a sewage disposal system, provides specific construction specifications, and has an expiration date, whereas a well permit evaluation does not authorize the construction of a sewage disposal system.

Vacant land assessments do not have a set end date, and as a result, they are often performed in instances where the property is unlikely to be developed for a long length of time.

Important to note is that a vacant land evaluation approval does not imply authorization to construct a wastewater treatment system; rather, an application to construct a wastewater treatment system must be submitted and a construction permit issued before any wastewater treatment system construction can begin.

  1. The seasonal high water table is the maximum level or elevation of groundwater at which the soil is flooded by groundwater during the regularly wet seasons of the year.
  2. The inspection of soils, soil saturation, soil mottling (during dry seasons of the year), soil structure, historical records, technical data, or other verifiable data may be used to identify the seasonal high water table.
  3. To ensure that new construction sites comply with current District Health Department No.
  4. How can I keep my septic system in good working order?
  5. Septic tanks should be opened and examined at least once a year, and excessive sludge or scum should be removed if necessary.
  6. Aside from that, practicing water conservation is a wise decision.
  7. Using the sewage disposal system to dispose of sump pump water, water softener recharge water, and storm water runoff is not recommended.

It is critical to repair leaky fittings as soon as possible.

It is important to note that septic tanks are the major source of treatment for residential sewage since they contain huge quantities of bacteria that are necessary for the treatment and breakdown of sewage wastes.

It is critical not to use excessive amounts of cleansers or disinfectants in the septic tank since they can interfere with the bacteriologic activities that occur in the tank.

Avoid using your waste disposal unit excessively since these units increase the quantity of particulates entering your system that are tough to break down and so should be avoided.

Is it possible for me to install my own septic system?

A final inspection by the health department must be performed prior to the system being used to ensure that it has been installed in accordance with the permit specifications and the requirements of the local sanitary code.

What if I require a copy of a permit for a system that is already in place?

Form for Making a Request

Be Septic Safe

The use of best practices can help to keep a septic system in good condition. There are four major categories, which are as follows:

  1. Proper maintenance, efficient water usage, proper waste disposal, and drainfield protection are all important considerations.

An yearly visual inspection of the drainfield and cleanout for symptoms of failure is an important part of proper maintenance. Immediately notify a licensed professional if any indicators of failure are observed and have the system examined. Septic systems should be examined and pumped out by a licensed expert once every three to five years at the absolute least. Maintain detailed records of all maintenance activities, including the dates, times, and descriptions of each, as well as any recommended actions.

If your system is older, if it is an engineered system, if it is in one of the scenarios listed in the “Unique Situations” section, or if it is advised by a professional, you may need to have it examined and/or pumped more regularly.

The lower the amount of water that enters the system, the less probable it is that the system will collapse.

Save water without making a trip to the shop by doing the following:

  1. Before starting dishwashers and washing machines, make sure they are completely loaded. Attempt to use just one water-based appliance at a time. Decrease the number of times that each appliance is used on a daily basis. Repair any leaks in the plumbing system. Showers should be taken more quickly. While brushing your teeth, turn off the water faucet. Dishwashing should be done in a basin.

The ability to distinguish between what goes down the sink and what goes down the toilet is essential for proper waste disposal. Avoid using garbage disposals since they can increase the amount of solid waste entering the septic system by up to 50 percent if used often. Pump outs may become more common as a result of this. Similarly, hot tubs should not be allowed to flow into the septic system since they might overburden the drain field. Additionally, water softener systems should be prevented from backflowing into the septic system since they might disturb the biological population that is necessary for wastewater treatment.

  1. Learn where the drainfield is and make a note of it.
  2. The same holds true for placing any trees or building structures over a drainage field.
  3. Drainfields, as a last point, are less effective when they are soaked with rainwater.
  4. Try to channel rainwater runoff away from the drainfield as much as possible by installing gutters, ditches, rain barrels, or rain gardens.

Septic Installation

When it comes to residential and commercial septic tank installation in Columbia and the surrounding areas of South Carolina, residents and business owners can turn to the professionals at Sharpe’s Septic Tank and Well Drilling Service.


Septic systems are essential for persons who live and work in rural locations where there is no access to a municipal sewer treatment plant or sewage treatment facility. Septic systems are the most environmentally friendly, efficient, and cost-effective method of treating wastewater. A well built and well-kept septic system may endure for many years if it is regularly maintained. Get in touch with us right away! More information regarding the process of establishing a septic system for your property may be obtained from our knowledgeable team.


The property owner will submit an application to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control for a Permit to Construct Onsite Wastewater System, often known as a Septic Tank Permit. The septic system is installed in accordance with the permission. The Permit to Construct provides us with information on the system, including its location, depth, tank size, drainline footage, and the type of drainline product that has been authorized, among other things. Once the septic system has been built, a South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control inspector will visit to check the system to ensure that everything is in compliance with their laws and regulations.

Using the notes he took on the job, the inspector will return to his office and draft the Final Approval based on his observations.

For the new house or business, a copy of the Final Approval will need to be provided in order for the power to be switched on.

We are accessible throughout the whole process, from the permitting procedure with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control to installation and maintenance.


Whenever public sewer is accessible and the municipality demands the installation of a Lift Station or Letts System, we can assist you. A range of tanks and sewage pumps are available from us, and they are designed to satisfy the demands and specifications of numerous municipalities in the Midlands region. Installation of a septic tank system and the connection to a sewer system should be left to the specialists. Improper installation may be quite expensive, as it can result in major problems that can cause damage to your house or business, as well as delays in new construction inspections.

Get in touch with us today to learn more about septic system installation or sewer hookup services.

Septic tank regulations updated

Regulations for septic tanks have been changed. On January 1, two components of the state’s septic tank system regulation entered into effect: Sections 1 and 2 of the rule. The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control revealed this past week that they have an impact on the setback regulations for wastewater systems. As Leonard Gordon, head of the Division of On-Site Wastewater Management at the Department of Health and Human Services, put it: “These new provisions address the required distances between septic tank systems and wells or bodies of water.” It is anticipated that this modification will apply to all septic tank systems that are allowed after the end of this month.

The legislature postponed the implementation of the parts dealing with the extra setbacks until January 1 in order to guarantee that the public was informed of the changes before they were implemented.

The two sections increase the required distance between a septic tank system and a private well or surface water from 50 to 75 feet, increase the required setback from a public well to 100 feet, and increase the required setback from a large septic system with a flow rate greater than 1,500 gallons per day to 100 feet from a water well, surface water, or estuary from 50 to 75 feet, respectively.

Call Leonard Gordon at (803) 896-0641 if you need further information.

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