Sewage Complaints

Discharges of sewage from septic systems (leach lines or leach bed) and mound systems are not allowed. These are non-discharging systems, and a discharge is evidence of a failure of the system.  Failing HSTSs must be repaired or replaced. Overflow lines from septic systems (bleeder lines) are not allowed, and the Clermont County Public Health will order their removal when found.
If a septic system or a mound system is not discharging sewage to the surface of the ground then it is not creating a health nuisance. These types of systems treat wastewater in the soil and subsoil. The movement of treated wastewater through the soil and subsoil is not regulated by Public Health. Public Health does not address easement issues regarding pre-existing leach lines and does not order the removal of leach lines in cases where no sewage easement has been granted.
Discharges from a sand filter or an aerobic treatment unit (ATU) are allowed. The discharge should be clear, colorless, and odorless. A septic odor, and/or grayish discoloration are an indication of a malfunction and a health nuisance issue. Repair or replacement will be ordered when failures are found. An ATU will sometimes produce odors due to temperature changes, overloading, or other adverse conditions even if it is working as designed. Discharging systems are not permitted to discharge onto neighboring properties in Clermont County without an easement, and the end of a discharge pipe should be at least ten feet from a property line. Public Health cannot order the removal of improperly located discharge pipes associated with existing systems.
All home owners who share a collector line are responsible for maintaining the collector line. Home owners who have a collector line crossing their property may not remove the line, or create a health nuisance by blocking the flow.

Grey water discharges (wastewater from showers, sinks, washing machines) are not allowed, and Public Health will order their elimination when found. All gray water must be tied into an existing HSTS, or into a sanitary sewer. If alterations to the household plumbing are required in order to correct a gray water discharge, then a plumbing permit must be obtained from the Plumbing Department before work begins.

No one may alter, repair, or replace an HSTS without prior approval from Clermont County Public Health. Major repairs will be conducted through the Sewage Nuisance Abatement and Repair Plan (SNARP) program. This step wise procedure breaks down system repairs into more manageable phases, allowing the homeowner to make repairs as needed that will eventually build to a full replacement system.  A completed and approved application, plus an installation permit is necessary prior to any work being completed. Public Health will work with a homeowner to discern the best course of action during repairs, however, in some cases replacement is the only option.

Household sewage treatment systems which have been replaced must be properly abandoned. A septic tank must first be pumped out by a registered septic hauler. The top of the tank must be crushed, then filled to grade with an inert material such as concrete, brick, block, stone, or earth. Removal of old leach lines is not required.

No person may drain or pump the contents of a privy, cesspool, or septic tank to the ground surface, into a ditch, a public sewer, street gutter, or storm sewer. The contents of a privy, cesspool, or septic tank must be disposed of in an approved manner by a septic hauler registered in Clermont County. “Approved manner” means the waste has to be disposed of at a municipal sewage treatment plant.

Public Health has no jurisdiction over municipal treatment systems. Complaints about public sewage treatment plants should be directed to the Ohio EPA.

File a complaint online.