Health Department Begins Residential ‘Perc’ Testing for Septic Systems


A percolation test is taking during the wet season to determine the absorption rate of soil for a septic drain field.




From the Anne Arundel County Department of Health:


The Department of Health’s Bureau of Environmental Health, will start annual wet season site evaluations and percolation tests on Monday, February 3, 2014. Wet season testing is arranged on a first-come, first-served basis. Appointments for wet season testing are being accepted and applicants are encouraged to submit wet season applications as early as possible so that each site may be properly evaluated for sewage disposal systems.

For the 2014 testing season, applications for mound sewage disposal systems must be received by March 1 and testing performed by March 14, 2014. All other applications must be received and scheduled by March 28, 2014.

To apply for percolation tests, contact the Anne Arundel County Permit Application Center, 2664 Riva Road, Annapolis, or call the Bureau of Environmental Health at 410-222-7193. You may apply online or download copies of the application.

The wet season test period is set for Anne Arundel County by using data from a network of monitoring wells to determine groundwater levels. Properties located in areas with certain soils and high water tables require testing during this season of the year. The highest water table is usually experienced during the months of February, March and April.

Wet season testing helps avoid inaccurately assessing the ability of the septic system to work in all seasons of the year. The information provided by the site evaluation and perc test is used to determine the size and type of septic system that can be installed on a specific lot. Factors such as slopes or adjacent wells can reduce the space available for a septic system. In addition, adequate land must be set aside for at least two future replacement systems. Depending on the results of the evaluation, this may mean reducing the size of the house and the size of the septic system to meet the requirements. In some cases, because of adverse soil or groundwater conditions, a property may only be developed when a public sewer is available.

For more information, call 410-222-7193.


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