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Email Link   Wastewater Connections and Disconnections

Your Household Wastewater System

Most residential properties are connected to Council’s wastewater system via a single junction into each lot.

The connection has identifiable points for access, inspections, repairs and surcharge (overflow). The following information and advice is provided to assist owners to evaluate sewer problems and reduce surface water inflow and groundwater infiltration into Council’s sewer.

Internal House Drainage

This includes all internal sewer drains throughout the premises that gravitate down to the inspection shaft. Owners are responsible for the repair and maintenance of internal house drains.

Overflow Gully

These are usually external points with a loose grated lid to allow sewage to overflow if a blockage occurs or there is significant wet weather. This should prevent overflows on your property.

Installation should be a minimum of 75mm about ground level. It is important that these points are not buried or covered to allow surcharge to occur during these events and prevent surcharge within you house.

Inspection Shaft

Inspection shafts are located on your property, usually around one metre inside the boundary that is adjacent to Council’s sewer main. This is usually either at the front or rear of your property. Inspection shafts are normally identified by a flat PVC or cast iron round disk approximately 180mm in diameter, normally with a concrete surround to protect it from damage.

Some older areas within the Tweed don’t have inspection shafts installed.

All property owners should be aware of the location of their inspection shaft, as they are responsible for maintaining it in a visible and working condition. Any repair or adjustment to the inspection cap, shaft and surround are the responsibility of the property owner.


Existing Developments
Application Form:Application for Approval of Plumbing and Drainage Work on Private Land
Note:This form is to be used for:
- vacant lot in approved subdivision where there is an existing sewer junction
- re-connection of a previous sewer disconnection in the same location
No Existing Sewer Junction
Application Form:Application for Alter Council's Water or Sewer Infrastructure
Note:This form is to be used for:
- new subdivision
- where there has never been a sewer connection before

Connection Guidelines

  • Council will advise you whether the new connection can go ahead. This will depend on a number of factors, including the proximity of the property to Council's sewer and whether or not the property is rated for sewer
  • A plumber may only connect to the wastewater junction point after the development and building applications have been approved and the property is rated for sewer.
  • Section 64 Developer Charges may apply when connecting to Council's Sewer Infrastructure and must be paid before connection is permitted. Council will advise if this is applicable for your property.
  • All wastewater connections must be installed according to Council's Standard Drawings and specifications.
  • In accordance with plumbing standards, adequate drainage must be considered when determining the floor level relative to the sewer connection point.


Disconnection of the wastewater service may be required if a property is to be redeveloped and/or existing dwellings are to be demolished or removed.

Permanent Sewer Junction Disconnection
Application Form:Application for a Permanent Sewer Junction Disconnection
Note:Council will provide you with a quotation for the work. Permanent sewer junction disconnections are carried out by Council.
Temporary Sewer Junction Disconnection
Application Form:Application for Approval of Plumbing and Drainage Work on Private Land
Note:Temporary sewer disconnections can be carried out by a Qualified Licensed Plumber once approval from Council is received.

Click on the headings below for further information on wastewater connections.

How to locate sewer infrastructure
How to request a new wastewater junction
Sewer Ejection Pump Stations
Council is not responsible for unblocking house drains

Frequently Asked Questions

As a Property Owner, what are my responsibilities relating to wastewater systems?

It is the owners responsibility to maintain internal sewer or sanity drainage in good working order. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Ensuring internal installation, upgrades or extension meet Australian Standards
  • Ensuring damaged or blocked plumbing is diligently repaired in a timely manner
  • Contacting Council for repairs or clearing blockages in public sewers
  • Ensuring stormwater and runoff water does not enter the sewerage system
  • Ensuring substances that are discharged to the sewer are not prohibited and will not create obstruction or blockages in public or internal sewers
  • Knowing the location of the property sewer inspection shaft and keeping it clear and visible
  • Keeping sewer easements accessible to Council at all times and not placing or building any structure within the easement, including trees, without Council's prior approval.
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