Photo of Septic Inspection with lid uncovered


The Township of Algonquin Highlands has recently implemented a Septic Re-Inspection Program for its residents. WSP Canada Inc.(WSP), as a third party consultant, is administrating the Septic Re-Inspection Program on behalf of the Township of Algonquin Highlands (the Township) and will be starting inspections in the spring of 2018.

The Septic Re-Inspection Program is a discretionary program that has been initiated by the Township of Algonquin Highlands to help preserve and protect surface water and groundwater quality. The program will include inspections of all properties within the Township serviced by one or more on-site sewage systems in accordance with the amended Ontario Building Code (O. Reg.332/12). All existing on-site sewage systems regulated by the Ontario Building Code will be inspected for malfunction, deterioration, misuse and overall compliance with Part 8.9 of the Ontario Building Code in order to identify any operation and maintenance issues that could pose possible risk to human and environmental health.

WSP has developed the Septic Re-Inspection Program based on the re-inspection guidelines provided by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing and in conjunction with the requests of the Township of Algonquin Highlands. Class 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 sewage systems, as defined by the Ontario Building Code, must be inspected by WSP under the Program. Listed below are various classes of sewage systems that require an inspection:

— Class 1: Chemical/Composting Toilet, Portable Privy, Earth Pit Privy, Pail Privy, Privy Vault, Outhouse

— Class 2: Greywater System

— Class 3: Cesspool

— Class 4: Septic Tank and Leaching Bed System (including those with advanced treatment systems)

— Class 5: Holding Tank

Please note that if you do not have a septic system on your property, or have had a system installed and inspected by the Township within five (5) years of your target inspection year, it is your responsibility to notify WSP of this information in order to remove your property from the list of inspection properties. WSP will confirm this information with the Township of Algonquin Highlands.

The approximately 4,500 inspections will be completed within five (5) years (2018-2022, inclusive), and have been subdivided into four (4) main inspection zones (A through D). Each property owner will receive an information package in the spring of their inspection year to detail how and when to contact WSP to arrange for a preferred inspection date and time. The information package will also include an overview of what to expect during the inspection process and a questionnaire about your septic system that you are recommended to fill out and return to WSP prior to, or during, the inspection.

Each inspection will take approximately one (1) hour to complete and it is mandatory that the property owner, or a representative over the age of 18, be present during the inspection process. It will also be required for the property owner to ensure that the septic tank lid(s) are exposed prior to the arrival of the Inspector. An inspection report will be completed by the inspector on site during the re-inspection.  A copy of the report will be provided to the property owner and a copy will be retained for Township records.  Certificate letters will be mailed to those properties that do not require remedial action(s). Properties that have improperly functioning systems will receive a remedial action letter outlining the deficiencies and documenting the required actions and timelines for corrective measures.

Property owners will be invoiced directly by the Township following completion of the inspection report.  The cost for the inspection will be $179.11.  Complete details of the program and fees can be found in By-law 2018-35 posted in the documents section below.


In order to provide additional information and to answer questions, WSP and the Township of Algonquin Highlands are pleased to invite you to the Septic Re-Inspection Program Information Session or “Septic Social” on Sunday, May 20th, 2018 10:00 am, at the Dorset Recreation Centre, 1051 Main Street, Dorset, ON. This session is designed to introduce you to the WSP project team and provide further information regarding the purpose of the inspections, the scheduling of inspections, and provide an overview of the inspection process itself. Attendance of this session is encouraged, however it is not mandatory.

A copy of the presentation made at the Septic Social held on August 26, 2017 is posted in the Documents section below.

As the program progresses, should you have any questions please feel free to contact:

Kathryn Stasiuk, EIT Project Co-ordinator for the Township of Algonquin Highlands Re-Inspection Program


Michael Varty, P.Eng. Senior Project Manager for the Township of Algonquin Highlands Re-Inspection Program

at 1-800-263-7419 (in Canada only) , 1-905-750-3080 x16319, or by e-mail at


By-law 2018-35 Sewage (Septic) System Re-Inspection Program
Inspection Zones - Schedule for inspections
Septic Re-inspection Program presentation Aug 26 2017
Septic Social - Sunday, May 20th, 2018
Septic Systems Quick Reference Guide