Septic & Wells

Septic and Wells

On-Site Wastewater (Septic) Program

On-site Waste Water (Septic) Program North Carolina general statutes state that a person owning or controlling a residence, place of business, or place of public assembly shall provide an approved sanitary sewage system. As a result, the Commission for Health Services has compiled rules and regulations addressing the placement, design, installation, and maintenance of subsurface ground absorption sewage disposal systems. The Environmental Health program at Caldwell County Health Department acts as agents of the NC Department of Health and Human Services to ensure that these rules and regulations are enforced and the public's health is protected.

Applications for Permits for Sewage Disposal Systems and Wells

Applications for lot evaluations for a subsurface sewage disposal permit can be made at the Caldwell County Health Department Central Permitting Office. An application fee is required as well as a site plan for the proposed property improvements. The Environmental Health Specialist will make a site evaluation based on the following factors:

  • Topography and landscape position
  • Soil characteristics
  • Soil wetness
  • Soil depth
  • Restrictive horizons
  • Available space

Once the lot has been evaluated and approved, a Septic Improvement Permit and an Authorization to Construct a subsurface sewage disposal system is issued. The Authorization to construct is required to obtain building permits from the Caldwell County Central Permitting office. Once the septic system is installed, another inspection is performed to ensure the system was installed in accordance with the laws and rules of North Carolina.

Water & Well Program

Applications for new well installation, well repair, or abandonment can be made at the Caldwell County Health Department Central Permitting office. An application fee is required as well as a site plan for the proposed property improvements for new wells. The Environmental Health Specialist will ensure your well is installed, repaired or abandoned in accordance with the laws and rules of North Carolina that are established to protect our groundwater resources from contamination for current well users and future generations.

An inspection is required during different stages of construction, repair, or abandonment as follows:

Field Evaluation

A Caldwell County Environmental Health Specialist will conduct a detailed field evaluation of the topography, landscape position, available space, and potential sources of groundwater contamination on or around the site on which your private drinking water well is to be located. The location of the well indicated by the EHS is to provide protection from possible sources of contamination. Flow volume (well yield) is NOT guaranteed at any site by CCHD.

Grout Inspection

The EHS will return to your site during the construction of the well to verify well placement and proper grouting of the well.

Wellhead Inspection and Certificate of Completion (COC)

After the pump is installed the EHS will return to your site to inspect the wellhead to verify that well construction is complete and in accordance with applicable laws and rules of North Carolina.

Final power cannot be granted or the well placed into service until a certificate of completion is issued by the EHS indicating the wellhead is approved.

Water Samples

  • Water samples for bacteriologic and inorganic chemical contamination are required to be taken by CCHD within 30 days of the issuance of the COC per 15A NCAC 18A.3802.
  • It is the legal responsibility of the well owner to provide access to a source of power for the purpose of collecting the required water samples.
  • If possible CCHD will take water samples during the same visit as the wellhead inspection. If this is not possible, CCHD relies on the well owner to contact the Health Department when power has been provided to the pump and the chlorine used to disinfect the well is no longer detectable in the well water.
  • Once the water samples have been analyzed by the lab CCHD will notify the well owner of the results by phone and send a copy of the lab report along with information and recommendations regarding the sample test results.

Well Disinfection Guidance