Septic System Maintenance
Why should I maintain my septic system?
- Saves You Money – Regular maintenance fees of a few hundred dollars periodically, are a bargain compared to the thousands of dollars incurred to repair or replace a malfunctioning septic system. Clean, safe drinking water saves all of us money.
- Keeps You and Your Neighbors Healthy – Household wastewater is loaded with disease-causing bacteria and viruses, as well as high levels of nitrogen and phosphorus. A properly functioning septic system helps remove these pollutants so well water and nearby surface water doesn't get contaminated.
- Protects the Environment – Malfunctioning septic systems can release toxins, pollutants and chemicals that eventually enter the lake, not only affecting our drinking water, but leaching into the the surrounding habitat.
- Protects Your Property Value – An unusable septic system or one in disrepair will lower your property value and could develop into a legal liability. Additionally, while your septic may be working well, we should be able to expect that everyone else is helping to protect all property values by ensuring that our Lake remains clean and safe, now and for the future.
- It's the law! Both Washington State and Thurston County require regular inspections of all septic systems.
- Where are the legal requirements stated?
For the state, check here: app.leg.wa.gov/wac/default.aspx?cite=246-272A-0270
For the county, check here (page 4-56): https://s3.us-west-2.amazonaws.com/thurstoncountywa.gov.if-us-west-2/s3fs-public/2023-12/PHSS_EH_2023_Article%20IV_Adopted_01.01.24.pdf
- Where can I learn more? The county website has a wealth of information, including:
- Information on hiring a Septic Professional, including lists of approved certified professionals
- Information on homeowner maintenance and requirements
- Other general information on system types, permits, time of transfer, and resources/help line contact information.
Check here: https://www.thurstoncountywa.gov/departments/public-health-and-social-services/environmental-health/septic-systems
- How do I find qualified suppliers?
It's very important to have a County or State certified professional to do the work on your system. Find updated lists here: https://www.thurstoncountywa.gov/departments/public-health-and-social-services/environmental-health/septic-systems/septic-hiring-septic-professional
- Can I do any of this myself?
Depending on your type of system, you might be able to and save yourself some money once you get trained and certified. More information and class schedules can be found here: https://www.thurstoncountywa.gov/events/homeowner-septic-self-inspection-certification-registration-required
- This can get expensive, is there any help available?
Yes! There are multiple sources to help with costs. Check these out: