Gravity Sewer Service Connection Checklist


If public sewer is available to your property and a pump IS NOT needed to serve the structure(s), follow these steps to connect to the public sewer: 

1.  Hire your choice of site/general contractor

It is recommended to:

  • Obtain at least two separate cost quotations,
  • Request a fixed-price contract.  Do not accept a time and materials contract, 
  • Verify what permit and connection fees are included in the price,
  • If no sewer lateral has been extended to the property, a licensed, bonded and insured contractor is required to perform any work within the public right-of-way, and
  • Request and check the references of the contractor you select.

2.  Obtain a Sewer Connection Permit

Permits are obtained from the City of Olympia Community Planning & Development Department (CP&D) at City Hall, 601 4th Ave. E., on the second floor.  Permit can typically be provided over-the-counter.  All fees must be collected prior to permit issuance.  Permit may be taken out in the owner’s name, but is typically obtained by the contractor.  Work within the public right-of-way typically requires an Excavation and Restoration Permit and Roadway Obstruction Permit.  Contact the CP&D permit desk at 360.753.8314 if you have any questions.

3.  Wait for Notification from the City of Olympia

If your property will be benefitting from to a new sewer construction project, you must wait for notification from the City of Olympia that the sewer main is complete and the system has been activated, tested and accepted before you move on to the next step.

4.  Contractor(s) Installs Side Sewer Line

Do not cover/bury side sewer lines until inspection by the CP&D inspector is complete. Call CP&D to schedule an inspection by 4 pm of the day prior at 360.753.8314. Be sure the Sewer Connection Permit is available during inspection. The side sewer line may be buried once the inspector approves the line.

5.  Remove and Abandon Your Existing Septic Tank

If you have an existing septic tank, the Thurston County Environmental Health Division requires that the tank be properly removed from service and abandoned once installation of the new side sewer is completed, inspected and accepted.  This process involves obtaining an on-site sewage system abandonment application form from Thurston County Environmental Health.  With the exception of pumping, typically, the work can be performed by your side sewer contractor. To perform the abandonment:

  • Have the sewage container pumped out by a Thurston County certified sewage system pumper. Ask the sewage system pumper to complete a pumper slip, certifying the pumping.
  • Remove or destroy the lid.
  • Fill the sewage container with earth, sand or gravel.

Within five days of completion of the abandonment, complete the application, including the certification section. Attach the pumper slip to the on-site sewage system abandonment application and submit both to the Thurston County Permit Assistance Center, along with the application fee.  Environmental Health staff will review the documents and may visit the site to confirm the process. Upon approval, a copy of the approved application will be mailed to the applicant and county records will be changed to reflect the abandonment of the septic tank.

Need More Information?

  • For questions regarding the availability, location and type of sewer service at your property, contact City of Olympia Wastewater Utility staff at 360.753.8562.
  • For questions regarding permits and fees contact the City of Olympia Community Planning & Development Department at 360.753.8314.
  • For questions regarding abandonment of on-site sewage systems contact Thurston County Environmental Health at 360.867.2673.

Contact Information