Home Buying in Vienna>Question Details

76tran, Home Buyer in Washington, DC

Hi, I'm interested in a house w/ septic system. There's public sewer nearby, how much would it cost (approx) to change to city sewer?

Asked by 76tran, Washington, DC Thu Nov 22, 2012

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Depends on how far away a hook up is. Costs to county have gone up A LOT!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 30, 2013
We got a quote for a project like this a few years ago. A lot depends on the distance to the main sewer line. The home we were working on had to run about 75 yards to the main, and the cost was about $10,000.

It is well worth getting off of the septic system, if you can. Having the tank pumped out every two years runs about $3-400, and you do not have to worry about back-ups, should a tenant clog the drain field with grease - which does not sink to the bottom of the tank, but floats at the top to run off into the drain field.

When the drain field gets clogged, it needs to be jetted, which is additional expense. Jetting uses water pressure to propel the hose forward into the drain field, and at the same time clears out clogs.

While we are talking about plumbing problems: a product called the "Clog Hog" can be bought via mail order for about $300 to clear 3-4" sewer pipes of grease and obstructions, the next time you have a backed-up pipe. Clog Hogs are advertised in Popular Mechanics.

There are plumbers who specialize in installing sewer drains and should be able to give you a pretty good estimate from a site visit.

For interesting project photos and remodeling info, visit: http://www.BruceMoose.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 23, 2012
Hi. I'm a retired subdivision developer, who developed Noble Estates, in Fairfax County. on septic drain fields. I hereby confirm everything Don Stewart says. You will need to hire a civil engineer to get a cost estimate, but, even then, there could be additional costs involved. For example, what if underground rock is encountered? That could increase costs by tens of thousands of dollars.

My advice to you is, if you like the house, and the septic drain field and tank passes inspection, buy the house and learn how to maintain the system.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 23, 2012
Not enough info to give a good estimate.. How many feet is "nearby" Is there existing utility easements to the property? What jurisdiction are we talking? Tap fees vary from system to system. What is the size of the main? How far will it need to be extended? Does it need to travel under currently paved streets and or sidewalks? How far from the street to the house?Depending on your answers here it could be as low as $40,000 or a bit over $100,000
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 22, 2012
Thanks for your input (I have sticker shock right now), I don't know the answers to most of your questions. Will do some background to find out. Neighbors are about 150ft away from the house. The house is about 15 ft from the road. Doesn't have to go through any pavement, but there are some trees between us. Fairfax.
Flag Thu Nov 22, 2012
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