Onsite Wastewater Treatment System Types

Lake County Code Chapter 171 provides the rules and regulations for onsite wastewater treatment (OWTS) in the county. OWTS, commonly referred to as septic systems, are used to treat and disperse wastewater for both residential and non-residential property. The systems are used in incorporated and unincorporated areas wherever public sewers do not exist.

OWTS designs are based on estimated wastewater flow and soil conditions. Soil conditions are determined by a professional soil scientist/classifier. The description of the soil from the soil evaluation provides the basis for a particular system type described in the Code. The key characteristic in soil suitability for OWTS is the depth to the seasonal soil saturation.

There are basically five system types presented in the code. The difference in the system types is defined by the depth of seasonal soil saturation (see illustrations below). The treatment of the effluent is critical in protecting surface and groundwater resources.

Steps for Approval
To receive approval to construct an OWTS (septic system), the following steps must be accomplished:
  1. A soil evaluation must be completed by a licensed soil classifier from either the Health Department or by an independent soil classifier.
  2. The results from the evaluation are then used by a licensed septic system designer/engineer to design a system.
  3. Plans are then submitted to the Health Department for review.
  4. The processes involved to obtain other permits you may need for your project are specific to your municipality or the county depending on whether your property is in incorporated or unincorporated Lake County.
  5. To install the system, contact a licensed septic system contractor to apply for a construction permit. The permit is valid for 120 days.
Some Common System Types
Access a collection of photos showing some of the commons systems.