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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 12. Health
Agency 5. Department of Health
Chapter 610. Sewage Handling and Disposal Regulations
7/15/2020

12VAC5-610-817. Maintenance.

A. In order to encourage proper maintenance and reduce the likelihood of solids being discharged to an absorption field, all septic tanks constructed after July 1, 2000, shall be designed to allow for routine inspection without being uncovered (i.e., have an inspection port as provided for in subsection B of this section) or have an effluent filter as provided for in subsection C of this section, or be designed for reduced maintenance as provided for in subsection D of this section.

B. Inspection port. An inspection port is a three-inch or larger port pipe or structure which allows access to the septic tank for the purpose of measuring sludge and scum accumulation. The inspection port shall terminate at or above grade and be designed to allow an inspection of sludge buildup in the septic tank. The inspection port shall be constructed of schedule 40 PVC pipe, or its equivalent, and shall be fitted with a watertight threaded cap. The recommended location of the inspection port shall be in or near the manhole cover on the inlet side of the septic tank away from the inlet tee. Other locations may be approved by the district health department on a case-by-case basis.

C. Effluent filters. An effluent filter is a device which has one or more of the following purposes: (i) to manage solids to provide greater service life to a pump or other components of an onsite system; (ii) to manage the total suspended solids (TSS) passed to the absorption field, potentially enhancing absorption field life; or (iii) some other purpose recognized as beneficial by the department.

1. All effluent filters shall be designed to improve the quality of effluent leaving the tank in a manner which is consistent with their purpose.

2. Septic tank outlet filters shall be constructed from a material which resists the corrosive nature of the environment within a septic tank.

3. A tamper proof child resistant at-grade access port shall be provided to assure the filter can be readily maintained as necessary.

D. Reduced maintenance septic tanks. Septic tanks which are sized 30% larger than shown in Table 5.3 and which are baffled such that the first compartment is nominally the volume required in Table 5.3 shall be considered to be a reduced maintenance septic tank.

Statutory Authority

§§ 32.1-12 and 32.1-164 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 16, Issue 16, eff. July 1, 2000.

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