Managing flood-affected septic systems

Onsite wastewater management systems (commonly known as septic tanks) are used on residential, community and business premises. 

If your property has been affected by floodwater, a licensed plumber or service technician should assess your septic system for safety and function. 

If you use a damaged system, there’s a risk that sewage could back up into your house or garden. This could cause a human health and pollution risk.

Parts of the system which may be damaged include:

  • shallow PVC pipes, which may be blocked
  • plastic tanks and sumps (concrete tanks are less likely to be damaged, but should still be inspected)
  • disposal/irrigation system and pipework
  • pumps and other equipment with electrical components. 

If you need to replace your system, you can find information on our website about regulations and approval process. 

Your local council issues permits to install or alter a septic system. They will be able to advise you on the process to apply for a permit.

Reviewed 16 November 2022