///Certification Procedures for Individual Sewage Disposal System (ISDS) and/or Water Well

Certification Procedures for Individual Sewage Disposal System (ISDS) and/or Water Well

What is a Certification?

A certification is a requested inspection for the septic system and/or well that is completed by the Health District. This review is done to ensure that the septic and/or well are in good condition and meet the regulatory requirements. This is typically done during real estate transactions and is often required by lenders. SNHD is the sole entity within the Clark County area that can offer official certifications for septic systems. SNHD offers a well certification as a courtesy inspection; SNHD does not have jurisdiction regarding domestic or quasi-municipal wells and simply offers an unbiased 3rd party opinion of the existing well’s condition and water quality.

Certification or Inspection? What’s the Difference?

The primary difference between a certification and inspection is scope. Most septic inspections will examine the septic system from a structural integrity standpoint; you can contact a septic inspection company to determine the exact extent of the inspection. A certification provides a view of the property from a regulatory standpoint. SNHD will examine the system and property to determine if the septic system still meets all the legal requirements and if it is in compliance. Septic systems typically have a 40 year life span and many of these systems are only inspected during their installation; most properties experience development over this time period and the septic system may now be inadequate or no longer in compliance. The inspection and certification are both useful in their own right; ultimately, the requestor will need to contact their lender or agent to determine the exact requirements.

Certification Procedure

  1. An application requesting a certification must be completed and submitted to the SNHD. The submission can be made online or in person (by the applicant or a representative) to our office at 280 S. Decatur Blvd., Las Vegas, NV 89107.
  2. Once all appropriate fees are paid, a site inspection will be arranged for the septic and / or well. There are different requirements for each certification and other 3rd party costs that are associated with the certification (see the details below for each certification type). The chart displayed below shows the days we reserve for inspecting outlying areas; we are able to inspect on other days as long as the inspector’s schedule permits it.
Las VegasGood SpringsApexCactus SpringsBoulder City
JeanBunkervilleCalico BasinCal-Nev-Ari
Mountain SpringsCoyote SpringsCold CreekGolden Valley
PrimmGlendaleCorn CreekHenderson
Sandy ValleyLogandaleIndian SpringsLake Mead
SloanMesquiteKyle CanyonLaughlin
Moapa ValleyLee CanyonNelson
OvertonMount CharlestonPalm Gardens
Route 157Searchlight
Trout Canyon
Certification Fees
Certification – ISDS or Well (Single)$268.00
Certification for ISDS and Well (Both)$340.00
*Fees must be paid at the time the certification is requested. In the event a loan is canceled, fees are non-refundable.
  1. Upon approval of the field inspection, the original certification is then drafted by the next business day and available for pick up at our office.

Southern Nevada Health District Main Facility

280 S. Decatur Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89107

The requestor will also receive a copy of the certification via e-mail.

Septic Certification Requirements

The lid will need to be removed for the inspector to examine the interior of the septic tank; the inspector will also make a determination if the septic tank will be required to get pumped unless a pumping has been done within the last 12 months. The lids to the tank are typically buried underground and need to be exposed; septic tanks in the Clark County area can have one or two lids depending on the age of the septic system.

Newer septic systems will typically have two lids. There are situations where the septic tank lids are brought to the surface using risers which will have a plastic or metal access cover which can look like a sewer manhole cover.

Other costs that MAY be involved with the septic certification and are not covered by SNHD are:

  • Locating and/or uncovering the septic tank – The records for septic systems in the Clark county area are available using Health District’s Public Record Request
  • Pumping of the septic tank (if required by inspector) – A list of approved septic waste haulers can be found at: Liquid Waste Management
  • Cost to obtain any additional information for the certification or corrective action (if required)

Well Certification Requirements

A water quality analysis is required for certification; this is also known as a Routine Domestic Panel or Routine Domestic Analysis. For more information regarding the analysis of drinking water and a list of state approved water analysis labs can be found at: https://ndep.nv.gov/water/lab-certification/drinking-water-testing

Other costs that MAY be involved with the well certification and are not covered by SNHD are:

  • Locating the wellhead and water distribution system (as needed)
  • Cost to obtain any additional information for the certification or corrective action (if required)

Certification Results

Certifications will only be issued to properties that are compliant and submitted all the required information. The certification will be issued in one business day from the date all required information is obtained and the results will be emailed to the requestor or available for pick up at our office located at 280 S. Decatur Blvd., Las Vegas, NV 89107.

SNHD is the regulatory authority for residential septic systems; therefore, any findings of the septic certification will affect the status of the existing septic system permit. A property that fails to complete the course of corrective action recommended will be flagged as having a compliance issue. This will affect the property’s development ability as SNHD will not approve any building permits or other requests for approval without the issues being corrected.

Contact Information


Updated on: May 1, 2019

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