Onsite Wastewater Treatment System

About Us

We regulate treatment and dispersal of sewage from septic systems located on properties not served by a public sewer system. This is accomplished by reviewing and approving technical documents, drawings, plans and reports prepared by licensed professionals, followed by conducting on-site construction inspections and tracking required system maintenance. We provide information to owners of systems educating them on the proper use and maintenance of systems. We also investigate reported incidents of improper sewage disposal and respond with appropriate enforcement.

Who May Receive Services

Services provided are either technical or educational in nature and are provided by professional licensed staff to owners of systems, system contractors (installers, designers, pumpers, soil scientists) and prospective owners of systems.​

Recommendations During and After Flooding

During heavy rains and floods, the ground is often saturated, preventing proper operation of septic systems. Waste water from malfunctioning septic tanks seeping into the ground can contaminate surface water and ground water. 

Signs that a septic system is not working properly include the following:
  • Sinks drain slowly
  • Toilets drain slowly
  • Floor drains overflow
  • Sewage becomes visible outside the home
If you use a septic system at your home, take the following precautions:
  • Avoid contact with any septic system electrical devices until they are dry and clean.
  • Reduce all nonessential water use (for example, dishwashing, washing clothes, showering).
  • Flush toilets as little as possible or use a temporary toilet.
  • Pumping out septic tanks, aerobic units, lift stations, or holding tanks during times of high water may cause the tanks to float out of the ground. Consult with a licensed septic system professional concerning this.  
After the flood waters have receded, if you suspect your septic system has been damaged, get the system professionally inspected and serviced.  A list of septic system professionals can be found below.

Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems Ordinance

Lake County Code of Ordinances, Chapter 171 (see Appendix D for Minimum Setback Distances)

Early Assistance Meeting

Prior to submitting your project, you may request an early assistance meeting by contacting a Project Manager at 847-377-2600. Early assistance meetings are provided at no charge, and the meeting will be coordinated by a Project Manager to ensure all involved Lake County departments are present to address your proposed project. The meeting will identify project requirements and design issues before the project begins. The meeting may offer guidance on the best use of a complicated site. Minutes from the meeting will be provided for your use in design, layout and/or calculations that may be required for your proposal.

The Onsite Wastewater Treatment System offers a wide array of services used in siting, planning, and installation of septic systems. The Health Department trained staff of environmental health practitioners, soil scientists, plan reviewers, and administrators facilitate the communication process in the regulation of OWTS permits between the homeowner, design engineers and septic contractors.

Licensed Septic System Professionals