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Should I Hire a Separate Septic System Designer or Choose a Company that Includes Design?

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If you are looking to install a new septic system for new construction or to replace your existing system, there are several options when looking for a septic system designer. Most systems require three different professionals for the site evaluation, design, and installation (not including permitting and inspections).

 

Specialist #1: Septic System Site Evaluator

First, a site evaluation is performed by a TCEQ-licensed site evaluator. The site evaluator takes many factors into account to determine the site’s suitability for a septic system such as soil classification, topography and setbacks.

 

Specialist #2: Septic System Designer

Second, a design is completed by either a registered sanitarian or professional engineer, which is based on the information gathered during the site evaluation. Some designers are also site evaluators.

 

Specialist #3: Septic System Installer

After permitting and approval of the design, the installation is completed by a TCEQ-licensed installer. Some installers are also site evaluators and designers; many companies staff a designer in-house or subcontract them out.

 

All-In-One or Hire Separately?

Some companies only provide one of these services while some include all three, so which is more beneficial? Should you hire a company that provides an evaluator, designer, and installer? Is it more beneficial to hire them all separately? Here are the pros and cons of each:

 

3-In-One: Companies that Provide Evaluators, Designers, and Installers

Pros:

  • You only deal with one company instead of two or three.
  • If there is a discrepancy or issue with the system, the responsibility falls on one company. You won’t need to figure out which company is liable.

Cons:

  • Even though designs are often part of the installation package, some companies may still require a separate design if the anticipated design is outside of their scope of work.
  • If you end up choosing different company after the design is completed, you will still be financially responsible for the design. Keep in mind that you can still use that design with another company.

 

Hiring a Separate Designer

Pros:

  • You can entertain several bids for one design vs. bids off several different designs by the different companies. You’ll be comparing apples to apples.
  • There are a lot of installers that do not design at all, so you may be required to get a separate designer anyway.

Cons:

  • You may be dealing with 2-3 companies instead of one.
  • If there is an issue with the system, it may be a lengthy process to determine which company may be at fault.

 

Here at Van Delden, we offer in-house designs, but there are also instances where we recommend customers to bring a separate design before we provide a bid. It’s a case-by-case basis, so please do not hesitate to call us – we will be happy to guide you!


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