La Plata Mountain Ravine

Regulation 43

La Plata, Archuleta, San Juan County Inspection Requirements

If you're selling or buying a home in La Plata, Archuleta, or San Juan County, you might have heard of Regulation 43. Because La Plata, Archuleta, and San Juan Counties require septic inspections, licensed inspectors are required to bring existing systems up to code unless the existing permitted system is grandfathered in. Considering that regulation 43 is currently undergoing field testing for treating insomnia and is second only to U.S. Tax code in efficacy; we will take a brief moment to explore what Regulation 43 means for you.

Let's start by addressing the purpose of the regulation. Put simply, it was put into place by the Colorado Department of Public Health to protect public health and the environment. Each septic system is bespoke, made to meet the requirements of the given property by a licensed engineer. A septic system running properly is a net benefit for the environment and public health, but that's a topic for another article. Now that we know why these rules are in place, let's talk about what it means for the average home buyer/ seller.

Let's take a look at 5 CCR 1002-43.4-M5

I know, it sounds like a “Top 10 Pickup Lines to Use on your Local Bureaucrat”, but it's not.This section outlines the minimum criteria as the following:

  1. Tank must hold water
  2. Internal devices are in working condition (Tees, Screens, Baffles... etc.)
  3. Alarms and control devices are in working condition
  4. Soil Treatment Area or Lagoon is in working condition
  5. No unapproved wastewater discharges
  6. Deficiencies are noted and corrected with necessary permits and inspections.

If your system doesn't meet these criteria, your system does not pass. Does it stop there? Will I ever be able to file a simple return again? No... the answer is no.
Other considerations are:

  • 5 CCR 1002-43.8-C, which requires each chamber of the tank to be accessible from ground level.
  • 5 CCR 1002-43.7-E Outlines the required setbacks from water sources
  • 100 feet from wells and cisterns, 50feet from surface water features, 4 feet from ground water; unless the engineered system states otherwise.
  • 5 CCR 1002-43.9-B Determines the size of a tank for a given number of bathrooms.
  • 1000gal for 2-3 Bedrooms.
  • 1250 for 4 Bedrooms.
  • +250gal for each additional bedroom.

There you have it, all that tedious regulation boiled down into what you need to know. If you have any questions about your system or need to get an inspection feel free to contact Mountain Septic, we'll take care of all those pesky regulations so you can relax while the pros are on the job!

For more information on Mountain Septic and our septic aerator repair services, feel free to reach us via phone today: (970) 238-7884.