Septic Inspections

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This page contains general information about our inspection, pricing, process, and scheduling.

Our Inspection includes:

  • Permit Research

  • Standard Locating Procedures including probing and use of an electronic locator if necessary 

  • Digging up the lids (up to 3 ft)

  • Video Scope of any accessible lines

  • 10-15 page report with color photos

  • See "Fees" for more information

Pumping

The state requires us to inform you that for a complete inspection, the tank should be pumped.  We can inspect most tanks without pumping due to new technologies and tools in use, so our standard inspection does not include pumping.

 

You have the choice at the time you schedule the inspection to:

  • Have the tank pumped

  • Decline to have the tank pumped

 

If we inspect without pumping, we will tell you as part of the report whether the tank:

  • Does not need to be pumped

  • Is about ready to be pumped - buyer can have it done before or after closing, or try to negotiate it with the seller

  • Is overly full - buyer or seller can arrange to have it pumped (or contract with us to have it pumped).  After its pumped, we will come back out one time to finish the inspection

See our "Pumping" page for more information.

Inspection Fees

  • Base Fee - $300 per system*

    • This includes everything listed above, except pumping

    • $300 inspection price is paid up front to schedule

    • If inspection is cancelled at least 24 hours before scheduled date, 50% of the inspection price is refundable 

  • Trip Fee - by county

    • See this page for complete list

    • This is charged per trip to property

  • Oversized lids - $60 per lid

    • Due to the extra work, time, risk of injury, etc there is an extra fee for any oversized lids: Tombstone, Shelf, Tongue and Groove, Peanut, Slab, etc.  Unless the List Agent/Owner knows, there is no way to know what kind of lid until it is dug up.

  • Natural Hazard - $150

    • If there are multiple poison ivy/oak/sumac/etc plants; bees/wasps/hornet nests; or other natural hazard within 5ft of the tank, there will be an extra fee.

  • Pumping

    • Two Options:​

      • Pump the main tank​

      • Do not pump the tank, even if it needs it - we will complete as much of the inspection as possible​

    • Prices:​ For pumping 1000 gallons of flowable solids

      • Buncombe & Henderson County: $300​

      • Other Counties: $300 - $400 depending on location - please call our office or download our price list for details.

    • In a properly functioning system, the main tank is the only tank that should need pumped. Distribution Boxes, ​Pump Tanks, etc can be pumped for an additional fee.

    • Main Tanks larger than 1,000 gallons will have an additional fee

* Individual Systems vary but may include:

  • A Main Tank, a Pump Tank, a Distribution Box, A Drain field (or two drain fields with a valve)

Additional components (additional tanks, etc) may have an extra charge.

Process

 

  • Request Service (by email or phone)

    • If you have a due diligence date, or other deadline, please reach out to us at least 7 days before when possible.

    • Please include:

      • the client's name, email, and phone

        • property address
        • client's relationship to property (buyer, owner, agent, etc)

        • Due Diligence Date, if applicable

        • Pumping: yes or no (please contact us or see above for more information)

        • Permit or any other information you might have on the system

        • (the client is whomever is paying)

  • Complete Paperwork

    • We will request a permit from the county.

    • We will call 811 to have utilities marked for everyone's safety.

    • The client will receive an invoice and an inspection information via email.

    • The list agent/owner will receive a state required permission to dig form and a system information form via email.

  • Schedule

    • Once all the paperwork has been completed/paid and returned we will contact the client and/or their agent to get it on the schedule.

    • The permit is the only exception: since some counties can take 2 or more weeks, we will usually schedule before they respond.

  • Inspection Report

    • It can take a business day or two to get the report, pictures, videos, permit, etc and get it put together.  Once it's ready, it will be emailed to the client and whomever else they have designated.

Scheduling

Once we have received all the completed paperwork and the payment, we will reach out to the client to get the inspection on the schedule.

 

Please note the following:

  • Please let us know up front if there are any scheduling considerations: pets, tenants/24 hr notice, etc.
     

  • We do not perform septic inspections during the home inspection. The home inspector will be running water and appliances in the house; and if we are looking at the tank at the same time, we get splashed with sewage, plus it makes it hard for us to get a good look with the camera.  There are also a lot of people present for the home inspection while we are trying to dig holes and that presents an unsafe situation.
     

  • Due to the nature of the job we cannot guarantee a specific day or time.

    • There are many factors that influence our scheduling; including weather, previous jobs, cancellations, traffic, and other unforeseen circumstances.
       

  • Attending the inspection

    • Our report does include pictures of everything, so you'll be able to see exactly what the inspector sees.

    • Please let us know up front if the list agent, owner, buyer's agent or buyer want or need to be present for the inspection.  We can give you an estimated time with a 30min call ahead.

      • For everyone's health and safety we ask that everyone remains 25ft back from the work area. 

      • Please wear closed toe shoes if you are planning to enter the work area.

      • No children.
         

  • We will call it into showing times

    • We call a window of time into showing times - the start and end time of the showing times appointment are not guaranteed arrival/departure times.

Reinspection

If we are not able to inspect all items due to circumstances out of our control, a reinspection can be requested after the obstacle is removed for the trip fee plus a reinspect fee of $150.

 

These reasons can include:

  • Returning after the tank has been pumped.

  • Components are inaccessible due to

    • personal items (boxes, furniture, etc);

    • plants (flowers, bushes, shrubs, trees, etc);

    • insufficient access to yard (gate locked, pets or children in yard, etc);

    • tank too deep to excavate by hand;

    • stairs, deck, patio, sidewalk, shed, or other structure/landscaping over components

    • Rocks, boulders, retaining walls or other landscaping over components

    • Utility (or other) lines across tank (including power, internet/cable/phone, water lines, irrigation systems, etc)

Please contact our office if you have any questions, comments, or concerns.

Septic Inspection FAQs

Septic Inspection

What areas do you cover?


Right now we service Western NC. All our inspections include Buncombe County. We also do collections in the following counties for the listed trip fee: Henderson - $25 Madison - $35 Haywood, McDowell, Yancey - $45 Transylvania, Polk - $55 Rutherford - $65 Mitchell, Jackson - $75 Swain, Macon - $90 For other counties in WNC, please call our office. We will be expanding our service area soon - keep an eye on our facebook page for announcements.




How far in advance do I need to schedule?


Septic Inspections without pumping are usually about 5-7 business days from request to report. Septic Inspections with pumping are usually about 5-10 business days from request to report, though this depends on pumping availablity. Of course you are welcome, and encouraged, to order further ahead than that, since jobs can get delayed by weather, obstacles to the inspection (patio over tank, etc), and other unforseen circumstances.




Does someone need to meet you there?


It is helpful to have the water and power on and we do sometimes need access to the inside of the hosue. If this is a house listed for sale with an agent, we can arrange access with the agent.
We have Sentrilock accesss and do not need anyone to be there; though the client, property owner, and their agents are welcome to attend, just let us know when you schedule if anyone is planning on meeting us there. If you are a buyer or buyer's agent purchasing a For-Sale-By-Owner, please let us know that when you order. If you are a homeowner doing an inspection for your own information or prior to listing/selling your house, and so there is no agent, please schedule for a time when you are home or call our office to discuss.




Before for the inspection


It is helpful if the power and water are on, but we can do the inspection without it. We do sometimes need access to the inside of the house. We have a form for the property owner that asks for information about the system (location, etc) - the more information we have, the better the inspection will be. We also have a form for the client. If the property owner knows where the compents (tank, pump tank, distribution box, and drain fields) are, if they could please mark them somehow and let us know, that is very helpful as well. We will need to access all the components with about 5ft on all sides to work. Please check common sense things: trim back shrubs, thorn thickets, etc; have pets put up out of the area; etc.




Questions about Pumping


Please see the "Pumping" page




Recommended Repairs


Anyone with a copy of our report can contact us about the recommend repairs. We can provide an estimate and services for minor repairs and/or refer you to another repair company.





Policies

Payment


A nonrefundable deposit of $125 is due at time inspection is requested. This covers the appointment time and the prep work (including permit research, forms, etc).

The Trip Fee and remaining $125 is due at time of inspection. Reports are not released until the balance is $0.
The $250 price is for one system.




Cancellations


If you need to reschedule or cancel, please let us know as soon as possible.
For inspections cancelled: - before we arrive on property, the nonrefundable deposit is all that is due. - once we are on site, the nonrefundable deposit and the trip fee will be due. - once we have started the inspection, the full amount will be due.




Inspection cannot be completed.


If our tech arrives at the property and cannot complete the inspection due to circumstances the owner/agents should have known*, the tech will complete as much of the inspection as possible and the full amount will be due. *This includes if the tech arrives and: - the person who was supposed to provide access was not there - the lockbox is not there/working/is missing the key - power and water are off/house is winterized - components are inaccessible If the problem is fixed, a reinspection can be requested for the trip fee and $150 reinspection fee.




Report


Results are not released until payment has been received. Results/Reports are released to the person who paid for them. They can authorize us to copy others on the invoice & reports (spouse, agent, lender, etc). If the report is shared with the seller, they or their agent may ask us questions about it, request an estimate for the repairs, or ask us to do the repairs.