Does a septic tank require planning permission?
Septic tanks are an environmentally friendly method of wastewater disposal.
They are becoming an increasingly popular way to make business premises greener, while in many rural areas homeowners not connected to a sewerage system won’t have an alternative but to install one.
However, before rushing in and ordering a new septic tank, you must seek an answer to the question: Do I need planning permission?
Is planning permission needed for a new septic tank?
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.
Planning consent must be obtained from your council, and there is a stringent set of regulations that must be followed and requirements needing to be met.
With years of experience in the field, this is where our expertise at OMDI comes into play to get things moving quickly and efficiently.
What if I am replacing an old septic tank?
If you already have an existing septic tank installed, either at home or as part of your business premises, then you won’t need planning permission if you intend to simply replace it.
It doesn’t matter how old your existing system is; you can have it upgraded, renovated or replaced entirely and you won’t require consent from your local authority to get the job done.
In both instances, regardless of whether you are having a new septic tank built and need planning permission, or if you are simply replacing an old system with a new one and don’t require it, you will need to comply fully with existing septic tank building regulations.
They are different from planning permission.
In fact, no matter what type of construction or work you do on a home or property, these regulations always need to be followed.
That’s because building regulations essentially set guidelines when it comes to health and safety, energy efficiency and other important factors.
Failure to obtain planning permission when it is required, or not follow building regulations during construction, can result in serious penalties.
At OMDI, we follow all building regulations and make sure we comply with all the latest rules and regulations, to give you not only the highest quality service but the best possible solution too.
Changes to septic tank building regulations
Given the hazardous and potentially toxic nature of the wastewater, it’s no surprise the Environmental Agency has taken further actions to ensure the safety of the systems that contain it.
As a property owner, the onus is on you to make sure your system meets the requirements, so it’s important to be aware of your obligations.
In 2015, the Environmental Agency released General Binding Rules: Small Sewage Discharge to a Surface Water.
The primary objective of this legislation was to reduce the amount of wastewater making its way into waterways.
It also prohibited using a sealed pipe to direct wastewater into a nearby stream or river.
Though it has been against regulation to install a new septic tank discharging into a watercourse for a while, existing systems could continue doing so except where there was a specifically identified pollution problem.
However, a deadline to install an alternative was set for the start of this year.
There are two possible options.
Firstly, you could have a drainage field or soak-away system installed to ensure wastewater from the septic tank is safely dispersed.
Secondly, you could install a sewage treatment plant.
Sewage treatment involves using chemical and biological processes to remove contaminants and produce wastewater that is clean and can be released safely into the environment.
Other regulations that property owners must be aware of include:
- Making sure a tank is the correct size and installed properly
- Regularly emptying and maintaining the system to prevent wastewater from overflowing
- Informing a new owner in writing of their responsibilities if you sell your property
Why choose OMDI?
Here at OMDI, we are a family-run business with more than 20 years’ experience installing septic tanks.
When working with us, you’ll be looked after by our knowledgeable and friendly experts who will advise you on the best solutions for your sewer and drainage problems.
As well as installing septic tanks, our technicians are also able to provide regular servicing to keep your installations as efficient and environmentally friendly as possible.
If your septic tank has any problems, then we’ll be there to fix it.
Get in touch today for a free quote
What to know more about our septic tank services?
For a free, no-obligation quote and to learn more from our experts, contact OMDI today to discuss your project with one of our knowledgeable team.