Soil Bores

 Explanation and instructions as follows:

 IMPORTANT MESSAGE: Before starting the process for obtaining permits whether for septic, well, building, or zoning certificate, check with the Planning Department to determine whether your property has the correct zoning for building. Without proper zoning, all efforts spent throughout the process for construction will be wasted. The building permit cannot be issued without proper zoning.  



Soil bore applications must be filled out at the Health Department and a site plan must accompany the application. A copy must then be delivered by the applicant to the Boone County Soil and Water Conservation District located at 211 N. Appleton Road.

To download a soil bore application, click here. Note: This form cannot be submitted electronically via e-mail. It must be printed and submitted to our office. The soil bore fee is payable to the Boone County Department of Public Health at the time of application.



If the area to be soil bored is NOT in an area of bedrock the bore will be to a depth of 60 inches. If it IS in an area of bedrock, the soil bore must be done to a depth of 84 inches. A map showing areas of bedrock is located at the Boone County Health Department and at the Boone County Soil & Water Conservation District. These investigations will provide the information needed to determine the suitability of the soil for a primary septic system and a secondary replacement system. Three to five soil bores will be done at the discretion of the Soil Scientist to determine field site. Additional borings will be completed for an additional fee.



Isolation of the soil bored area by staking or otherwise delineating the area will either be the responsibility of the applicant or Boone County Soil and Water Conservation District if so chosen for a fee. (see application for description)



After the paperwork is completed at the Health Department, the applicant will be given eight flags. Four flags are to be placed so that an area (100' x 110' - 3 bdrm.) or (100' x 150' - 4 bdrm.) or (140' x 140' OR 100' x 180' - 5 bdrm) is designated as the proposed primary and secondary septic area. The remaining four flags are to mark four corners of the lot.



The soil bore fee is payable to the Boone County Department of Public Health at the time of application. Eight (8) flags will be given at the time of application. Four (4) flags for the 4 corners of the lot and 4 flags shall mark the 4 corners of the original septic field. A replacement field area will be determined and bored as needed. A waiver of liability (ie. Septic Repair Investigation Contract) will need to be signed to allow the soil scientist to perform the soil bores needed for the replacement site. Following is the downloadable Septic Repair Investigation Contract. To download the Septic Repair Investigation Contract, click here. This form cannot be submitted electronically via e-mail. It must be printed and submitted to our office.


Soil bores will be completed based on the following:

 1. The application is taken to the Boone County Soil & Water District's office. At this time, an appointment for the soil bore will be scheduled. Soil & Water Conservation District staff ask that applications for soil bores be received at least two weeks before an appointment is to be scheduled.
2. Weather conditions, equipment, staffing exist which are conducive to the completion of the soil bores in a timely manner.
3. The flags given to the applicant, are in place as requested.


Bore Review (Conventional System / Non-Conventional System):

After the Health Department receives bore results, the approved septic area is drawn to scale on the site plan. The septic system requirements are posted on the application. The locations of well and septic areas on adjacent lots are noted. The application and approved site plan is then sent to the applicant. A copy should be given to the applicant’s septic and well contractors. (Time is approximately 5-10 business days after receiving bore results)


Septic System Plan (Conventional System/Non-Conventional System):

A septic installer or homeowner must submit a septic plan for review. This plan must be drawn to scale and must include proposed home/building locations. Using the approved site plan is the easiest way to submit a plan and can be obtained from either the soil bore applicant or the Health Department. Any variances of Boone County Code must be asked for in letter form prior to approval. Once the proposed plan is rejected or approved, the applicant is then sent notice. (Review time is approximately 5-10 business days after receiving septic plan.) Along with the plan, the applicant must also submit a elevation profile and septic checklist. To download an elevation profile, click here. To download the septic checklist, click here.


Fees & Issuance of Permits:

Permit application fees are paid at the time of plan submittal. The property owner must sign off on the proposed waste stream and the maintenance agreement for conventional private sewage disposal systems and the General Contractor (builder) of the property must have signed off on a “General Contractor Consultation”. The General Contractor only needs to sign this consultation once annually. Following is a downloadable Wastestream Information sheet and a General Contractor Consultation.


To download a Wastestream Information sheet, click here.

To download a Maintenance Agreement for Conventional Private Sewage Disposal Systems, click here.

To download a General Contractor Consultation, click here.


If the permit applications are approved, the septic and well permits are issued to the property owner and copies are sent to the contractors. The septic plan and well application must be approved and permits issued before installation or drilling may begin or before a Boone County Building Permit will be issued


Aerobic Treatment Units (ATU) or Chamber Septic System Reduction - Operator's Permit

If the proposed septic plan includes an Aerobic Treatment Unit (ATU) designed to specially treat the effluent or includes a chamber system that utilizes a reduction in field size as allowed by the Boone County Private Sewage Disposal Code, the property owner must obtain an Operator's Permit to operate these type of septic systems for their home.  Before the septic permit can be issued by our office, the owner must sign the "Agreement for ATU or Chamber Septic System Reduction Operator's Permit" form, so that they are aware of the ongoing requirements for the Operator's Permit. 

To download the Agreement for ATU or Chamber Septic System Reduction Operator's Permit, click here.


Installation & Inspection:

The installation must be completed by an Illinois licensed and Boone County licensed septic installer. The system must be installed in accordance with all IDPH and Boone County Health Department private sewage disposal codes. Boone County Health Department must be notified 48 hours prior to beginning septic system installation. At that time, the installer will be issued a confirmation number. This number must be given at the time of final inspection appointment request. If an inspection is needed sooner than 48 hours, an unscheduled inspection fee may be paid and an inspector will respond as soon as one is available. The fee may be paid to the inspector, upon arrival, at the site. A receipt will be issued at that time. No portion of any private sewage disposal system shall be covered or concealed until after it has been inspected and approved by the health officer. A call the day before or early on the day of completion is required for a final inspection appointment.


Septic Repairs:

The repair of septic systems requires soil bores and a scale drawing just like a new system. The scale drawing must include placement of the old system and well location. Also, the well location of adjacent lots is required. An application and submittal fee is required. The same rules (like new systems) apply if a homeowner repairs his/her own system. In addition, you must submit a signed “Liability Waiver for Septic Investigation”. 

To download a Liability Waiver for Septic Investigation, click here. 


Septic Alterations on Existing Septic Systems:

Septic alterations may be necessary in certain cases where a home addition, pool, or other structure is proposed that encroaches on the area where the existing septic is located or requires additional septic lines to be added to accommodate the additional waste stream. Additional septic lines may have to be added to the existing field or parts of the existing septic lines may have to be abandoned and added in a different location on the property.  A septic permit is required for this.


Property Owner Septic Installation:

Homeowners (unlicensed) who wish to install their own systems must pay for two additional compliance inspections. A homeowner installer must call in these two additional mandatory inspections at times in the installation process as set forth by the Health Authority. Owner-installed septic installation education is available by appointment and is paid for hourly, in advance. Following is a downloadable homeowner septic installation form:

To download the Homeowner Septic Installation form, click here. This form cannot be submitted electronically via e-mail. It must be printed and submitted to our office.


Septic Complaints:

 Raw sewage or effluent that is on the surface of the ground is a public health hazard. The Illinois Private Sewage Disposal Licensing Act and Code prohibits the discharge of “raw or improperly treated domestic sewage to the surface of the ground or to farm tiles, streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, or other collectors of water”(Sec. 905.20, h). Septic pumpers must submit proper documentation and receive permission before land applying septage.


Complaints about failing septic systems, raw sewage back-up into an apartment, surfacing effluent, or illegal septic pumper activities may be submitted to the Boone County Health Department through our nuisance complaint program.

To download a Nuisance Complaint form, click here.


Boone County Installer and Pumper Licenses:

State licensed septic installers and pumpers must also have a Boone County Health Department license to operate in Boone County . To obtain a license, complete the application and submit by fax, mail, or in person along with a copy of your State license and the applicable fee. There is no additional testing necessary. Boone County licenses are good for one year from the date of issuance.

Failure to obtain a Boone County license prior to installing any part of a septic system or pumping septage in Boone County will result in an additional fee. Other disciplinary action may also be taken as permitted by State and local Codes.

To download a Septic Contractor License Application, click here.


Septic Maintenance:

Septic tanks require periodic pumping to clean out the accumulated solids. The Boone County Health Department recommends pumping every 2-3 years, or as recommended by an experienced septic pumper. Sticking to a regular pumping schedule could save you money and headaches from unexpected back-ups into the house. Keep vehicular traffic off of the septic field and the line between the tank and the field. Heavy vehicles or regular traffic over the septic field damages the field lines and reduces soil absorption capabilities.

We have additional educational brochures on septic systems available at our office.  Also, please visit the EPA website by clicking here for more information about septic system maintenance.


Abandonment of Septic Tanks, Dry Wells, & Cisterns

Unused septic tanks, dry wells, and cisterns must be properly abandoned and a record of the abandonment must be sent to our office.  To download the abandonment form, click here.