Other States:
COLORADO
Population: 4,301,261

Information on the state of Colorado is available for the following topics. To review this information, click on the links below.

Contacts| Regulations, Statutes & State Codes | Quick Facts | Septic Stats

Onsite Demonstration Programs | Onsite Management Communities

 

 

Contacts:
Return to Index

Tom Bennett, EPS
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
Water Quality Control Division
4300 Cherry Creek Drive South
Denver, Colorado 80246-1530
(303) 692-3574
(303) 782-0390 (fax)

tom.bennett@state.co.us

http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/environ.html

http://www.cdphereg.asp/-wqreg

Regulations, Statutes & State Codes:
Return to Index

Colorado State Regulations

Colorado Constitutions, Statutes and Codes

Guidelines on Individual Sewage Disposal Systems
Chapter 25, Article 10
2000

Onsite regulations for Colorado were last updated in 1994, and there are no plans to revise existing Codes/regulations.

Technologies approved for use in Colorado include (1) conventional systems, i.e., septic tanks, soil absorption beds and trenches, absorption or seepage pits, dry wells, sand filters, mounds, and evapotranspiration beds; (2) alternative systems, i.e., gravelless chambers, some gravelless pipe systems, constructed wetlands, composing and incineration toilets, aerobic systems with NSF Std. 40 certification; and (3) experimental systems, for which each installation requires local Board of Health approval and a dedicated site for replacement with a conventional or alternative system. Colorado has identified no specific products or technologies as experimental. Any technology not listed here can be approved on a case-by-case basis as experimental or can seek certification by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment. Certification requires review by the Technical Advisory Committee. The system must meet all applicable elements of Guidelines on Individual Sewage Disposal Systems and system performance standards to gain certification by the committee.

Although none is known to exist, surface discharge is an option for onsite systems in Colorado. Surface discharge requires a CDPS (equivalent to NPDES) permit and technology compatible with applicable effluent limitations. An NPDES permit is also required and is issued by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, Water Quality Control Division.

Colorado Code allows for drainfield area/size reductions in gravelless absorption field systems, permanently installed low-flow fixtures, and dosing systems. The maximum reduction is 50%, and no other reductions are allowed.

No funding program or mechanism exists to assist homeowners either replacing failing systems or installing new systems, and there are no plans to develop such a mechanism within the next year.

There are no ongoing onsite wastewater demonstration, research, or testing projects in Colorado.

State Code does not recognize or require management programs/contracts or management districts to monitor and maintain onsite systems or individual septic disposal systems, nor are there plans to develop such programs within the next year.

Whether local agencies have the authority to adopt or require maintenance/management programs is currently under debate, but it has not been the subject of a legal opinion to date.

Although the State does not track the number of permits issued per year for new construction, system repair, and system replacement, a survey conducted by the Colorado Environmental Health Association of local health agencies indicates that approximately 10,000 permits were issued annually, including some overlap of the three (3) types of reasons for the permit. All records are maintained at the local level.

In Colorado, a failed system is not defined in either statute or regulation. There is no reporting of system failures, or causes, to the state.

Colorado does not have a licensing/certification program for onsite wastewater professionals; however, local health authorities have the authority to implement a licensing program for systems contractors and for systems cleaners.

No licensing or certification program exists for inspections. Site evaluations require percolation tests, and such tests must be performed by a registered professional engineer or local health department staff.

Information about municipal wastewater is available by contacting David Akers, Water Quality Protection Section Manager, Water Quality Control Division, by phoning (303) 692-3591, or at the email address dave.akers@state.co.us.

 

Quick Facts:
Return to Index

Total number of onsite systems: NA; 1990 U.S. census reports about 185,000 systems in the
ground.
Number of new systems installed each year: A total of 10,000 new and repair permits were
issued last year.
Failure definition: NA
Number or proportion of systems presently failing: NA
Number or proportion repaired annually: See above.
Number or proportion replaced annually: See above.
Number or proportion of repairs or replacements that require alternative technology (e.g.,
sand filters, pressure dosing):
NA
Number or proportion of repairs or replacements that require advanced technology (e.g.,
disinfection, nutrient removal):
NA, but “very few if any.”

Cost of a conventional septic system installation: $3000-$7000; range, $1500-$18,000.
Cost of a centralized sewer tie-in (including fees and cost of the sewer lateral): NA

 

Septic Stats:
Return to Index


TOTAL PERSONS TOTAL HOUSING UNITS PUBLIC SYSTEM DRILLED WELL DUG WELL OTHER PUBLIC SEWER SEPTIC TANK OTHER MEANS
COLORADO 3,294,394 1,477,349 1,344,307 110,516 9,382 13,144 1,283,186 183,817 10,346
COUNTIES
ADAMS 265,038 106,947 103,388 3,234 243 82 103,094 3,657 196
ALAMOSA 13,617 5,254 3,305 1,835 72 42 3,426 1,749 79
ARAPAHOE 391,511 168,665 166,142 2,379 111 33 165,291 3,286 88
ARCHULETA 5,345 3,951 2,611 948 250 142 2,032 1,728 191
BACA 4,556 2,434 1,659 722 46 7 1,552 863 19
BENT 5,048 2,332 1,610 690 27 5 1,322 1,006 4
BOULDER 225,339 94,621 86,950 5,997 979 695 82,809 11,267 545
CHAFFEE 12,684 6,547 3,596 2,747 96 108 3,543 2,832 172
CHEYENNE 2,397 1,083 766 300 15 2 700 379 4
CLEAR CREEK 7,619 4,811 2,434 1,990 141 246 2,639 1,983 189
CONEJOS 7,453 3,574 1,696 1,169 466 243 1,605 1,695 274
COSTILLA 3,190 1,743 955 560 38 190 857 737 149
CROWLEY 3,946 1,415 1,320 88 4 3 977 430 8
CUSTER 1,926 2,216 528 1,422 136 130 538 1,418 260
DELTA 20,980 10,082 9,449 193 12 428 4,024 5,848 210
DENVER 467,610 239,636 239,464 110 38 24 238,627 460 549
DOLORES 1,504 947 521 153 24 249 310 565 72
DOUGLAS 60,391 22,291 16,921 5,094 210 66 16,376 5,838 77
EAGLE 21,928 15,226 13,784 783 157 502 13,556 1,536 134
ELBERT 9,646 3,997 914 2,923 150 10 844 3,091 62
EL PASO 397,014 165,056 156,482 8,103 208 263 153,007 11,790 259
FREMONT 32,273 13,683 11,722 1,457 231 273 8,739 4,747 197
GARFIELD 29,974 12,517 10,170 1,688 71 588 9,469 2,870 178
GILPIN 3,070 2,438 432 1,497 181 328 435 1,545 458
GRAND 7,966 9,985 6,974 2,429 372 210 7,592 2,168 225
GUNNISON 10,273 7,294 4,274 2,161 247 612 4,315 2,454 525
HINSDALE 467 1,254 599 533 10 112 487 711 56
HUERFANO 6,009 3,913 2,779 453 330 351 2,347 1,376 190
JACKSON 1,605 1,326 565 519 37 205 471 744 111
JEFFERSON 438,430 178,611 166,082 11,539 607 383 164,294 13,944 373
KIOWA 1,688 878 568 294 16 0 419 455 4
KIT CARSON 7,140 3,224 2,225 885 98 16 2,145 1,001 78
LAKE 6,007 3,527 2,562 862 10 93 2,523 871 133
LA PLATA 32,284 15,412 9,505 4,924 456 527 9,378 5,718 316
LARIMER 186,136 77,811 72,599 3,966 585 661 65,333 11,868 610
LAS ANIMAS 13,765 6,975 5,830 878 65 202 4,431 2,357 187
LINCOLN 4,529 2,204 1,569 514 93 28 1,504 643 57
LOGAN 17,567 7,824 5,430 2,290 97 7 5,535 2,203 86
MESA 93,145 39,208 37,669 849 77 613 31,300 7,660 248
MINERAL 558 1,201 416 601 18 166 329 784 88
MOFFAT 11,357 5,235 3,903 934 62 336 3,923 1,144 168
MONTEZUMA 18,672 8,050 7,060 367 51 572 4,388 3,469 193
MONTROSE 24,423 10,353 9,337 588 92 336 5,848 4,379 126
MORGAN 21,939 9,230 7,364 1,759 82 25 6,511 2,676 43
OTERO 20,185 8,739 8,174 449 33 83 6,750 1,929 60
OURAY 2,295 1,507 1,084 230 19 174 714 734 59
PARK 7,174 7,247 1,276 5,333 436 202 1,149 5,770 328
PHILLIPS 4,189 1,960 1,452 501 7 0 1,439 502 19
PITKIN 12,661 9,837 8,275 1,177 72 313 7,842 1,850 145
PROWERS 13,347 5,855 5,438 388 7 22 4,710 1,107 38
PUEBLO 123,051 50,872 48,111 1,982 245 534 43,834 6,793 245
RIO BLANCO 5,972 2,803 2,082 443 50 228 1,997 753 53
RIO GRANDE 10,770 5,277 2,904 2,087 166 120 2,984 2,164 129
ROUTT 14,088 9,252 7,170 1,206 397 479 7,265 1,881 106
SAGUACHE 4,619 2,306 1,278 849 66 113 1,227 957 122
SAN JUAN 745 481 447 13 0 21 447 23 11
SAN MIGUEL 3,653 2,635 1,932 466 38 199 1,657 893 85
SEDWICK 2,690 1,414 1,037 362 15 0 990 405 19
SUMMIT 12,881 17,091 15,114 1,723 83 171 15,021 1,848 222
TELLER 12,468 7,565 4,418 2,828 83 236 3,171 4,190 204
WASHINGTON 4,812 2,307 1,129 1,142 35 1 1,064 1,234 9
WELD 131,821 51,138 46,428 4,323 255 132 39,667 11,222 249
YUMA 8,954 4,082 2,429 1,587 64 2 2,413 1,617 52

 

 

Onsite Demonstration Programs:
Return to Index

No information is available on Onsite Demonstration Programs in Colorado.

Onsite Management Communities:
Return to Index

Crystal Lakes - Larimar County