Donegal County Council Logo
Home > Services > Environment > Pollution Control > Water Pollution

Domestic Wastewater Treatment Systems Registration (Septic Tank Registration)

Domestic Wastewater - Advice and Guidance

Wastewaters from single houses in the countryside, that are not connected to sewers, are generally treated on-site by septic tank systems or individual domestic wastewater treatment systems, (DWWTS). The Government has introduced legislation to control the discharges from these systems. 


  • A registration system for DWWTS is in operation.  All existing DWWTS should have been registered before the 1st February 2013, but if you have not registered, you may still do so on Protect Our Water website. The website also provides a comprehensive FAQ section.
  • All new development, where a DWWTS is constructed or installed, shall ensure that the system is registered with the local authority within 90 days of connection of the premises to DWWTS ( S.I. 180 of 2013).
  • It is an offence not to register your system, (new or existing).
  • Check out the EPA’s guidance on wastewater treatment systems for a single house. Further information for householders on septic tanks from the EPA can be found here.


Septic Tank Inspections

A new regime for inspecting domestic wastewater treatment systems (or better known as septic tanks) was established in Ireland in 2013.  The Environmental Protection Agency is responsible for the development of the National Plan, whose aim is to protect human health and water from the risks posed by domestic waste water treatment systems, by using a two-strand approach of education and awareness strategies linked with a risk-based inspection process.


The Plan is delivered by Local Authorities and the number of inspections for each county is allocated on a risk basis.  'Risk-based' means putting resources where the risks are greatest to human health and the environment.  The Plan focuses particularly on areas where the potential risk to public health and valuable water resources is higher. (Inspections are not carried out at the request of the homeowner).


Regulations governing the operation and maintenance of domestic wastewater treatment systems (DWWTSs) ( S.I. No. 223 of 2012) require owners of DWWTS to operate and maintain their systems and this includes de-sludging.  All domestic wastewater treatment systems require ongoing maintenance to ensure that the septic tank/treatment plant operates effectively and that solids do not enter the percolation area and clog the distribution pipe work. A list of permitted contractors operating in Donegal is available at the following link:


DCC Desludging Guide and WCP Contractors 10 October 2019




Application forms
Registration Form for registering your Wastewater Treatment System (Septic Tank)

Failed Septic Tank Inspection Grant Application Form




Information leaflets
What you need to know about your septic tank
Is your well at risk from your septic tank
What to expect from your septic tank inspection




Further documents of interest listed below
Information on Domestic Wastewater Treatment Systems Registration 
Have you completed a septic tank system check
How to safely spread sludge from your septic tank
Remediation and replacement of septic tank
Septic tank and wastewater systems when buying or selling a house
Septic tank desludging guidelines

Rate this Page

Select an option below

Map Services

Map Portal

  • winterweather Image
  • NWGreenway network icon
  • Donegal Tourism Logo
  • Rennet Image
  • NPPR Logo
  • Donegal Gathering Logo
  • Donegal Diaspora Logo
  • Public Art logo
  • Regional Cultural Centre logo
  • Spaceial logo
  • IrishWater
  • LEO