Wastewater Control

Looking at building a new house or simply upgrading your existing wastewater control system, then you will need to lodge an application to install or alter your wastewater control system. You will also require approval if you are adding on extra bathrooms or laundries and if there is any alteration to the existing plumbing work. This is required under the South Australian Public Health (Wastewater) Regulations 2013 and On-site Wastewater Systems Code

There are many different types of on-site Wastewater systems including the septic tank and soakage system, aerobic systems, Communal Wastewater Management Systems or CWMS (formerly called STED systems) and alternative systems such as the reed bed system, and composting toilets.

One application is used now that covers all of the different types of systems. To access the application form click here.

Septic Tank and Soakage System

The minimum size septic tank for a 6 person dwelling is 3000 litres and 45 metres by 1.2 metre soakage trench however this is dependant on the soil report that is provided by the Geotechnical Engineer. A percolation test or geotechnical report will need to be submitted to indicate that the soil is suitable for soakage and what size area is required. Some soils such as clay aren't suitable for soakage as the water doesn't drain adequately.

A site plan showing the location of the septic tank and soakage trench in relation to the house, boundaries, driveways, any other structures and land features such as watercourses must be provided along with a plumbing layout.

Septic Tank & Soakage System - Installation Guidelines(59 kb)

Aerobic systems (including sand filter systems)

Aerobic systems treat the water with chlorine so that it can be used on your garden area. The system needs to be checked quarterly by a suitably qualified person to refill the chlorine and to ensure the pumps and aerators are working.

When lodging the application you will need to provide a site plan showing the location of the aerobic tank and layout of the irrigation area in relation to the house, boundaries, driveways and any other structures, a plumbing layout, and an Engineer’s report outlining the size of the irrigation area required.

Due to changes in the legislation a qualified Engineer with experience in wastewater must now determine the size of the irrigation area required. This is dependant on the soil type on your property and the poorer the quality of soil, the larger the irrigation area.

Note: Aerobic water cannot be used on any lawned areas or vegetable gardens.

Aerobic Wastewater Treatment System - Installation Guidelines(60 kb)

Aerobic Sand Filter - Installation Guidelines(60 kb)

Installation of Alternative Systems

Alternative wastewater systems such as the composting toilet, reed bed and worm farms systems are now approved by Council. The new application form also covers these types of systems and can be found at the top of this page.

For further information on these systems go to the Department of Health website    http://www.health.sa.gov.au/pehs/branches/wastewater/onsite-systems.htm

Communal Waste Water Management Systems (formerly STEDS)

Council has many Communal Wastewater management systems (CWMS) operating and there are different requirements for each individual scheme. Click here for Application Forms and Information Sheets.

Renovating your house?

If you are increasing the number of rooms or adding on any bathrooms, kitchens or laundries then you will also need to lodge an application form. We need to ensure that the existing system has enough capacity to cope with the additions and possibly extra people.

Compulsory Inspection Stages

Council must be notified at least 24 hours prior to the following stages have been reached to enable an inspection to be undertaken.

  • Underfloor plumbing
  • Installation of septic tank and drain
  • Installation of the irrigation area or soakage
  • Connection to the CWMS

Failure to notify Council of any of these stages may result in expiation fines being issued.

For any other queries relating to wastewater or CWMS, please contact one of Council’s Environmental Health Officers at the Cambrai Office on 8564 6020.