Septic System Assistance program

Approximately 4,000 homes in the McKenzie River Watershed upstream of EWEB's drinking water intake at Hayden Bridge rely on septic systems to dispose of their wastewater and sewage.

A typical septic system uses a tank to capture solids and a subsurface drainfield where liquid waste is allowed to percolate through the soil, which acts as a natural filter. Approximately 10 to 25% of septic systems fail, often releasing untreated wastewater into the underlying groundwater and/or nearby surface water.

While EWEB's water-filtration plant is designed to continually treat the raw water from the McKenzie River, increases in contaminants from failed septic systems could result in increased water treatment costs and reduced drinking water quality and taste.

Read our Homeowner's Guide to Septic System Maintenance to learn how you can help avoid costly repairs and help keep the McKenzie River clean.

Septic system financial assistance

Learn about EWEB's zero-interest loan and cost-share programs to help homeowners in the McKenzie Watershed proactively maintain their septic systems and drainfields and make needed repairs to protect water quality.

2008-2009 McKenzie River Septic System Assistance Project

EWEB received grant funds from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Safe Drinking Water Program to implement the McKenzie River Septic System Assistance Project. Read the McKenzie River Septic System Assistance Project Final Report (November 2009, 11MB PDF).

Additional resources

Email us for more information, or call Nancy Toth at 541-685-7438 or Karl Morgenstern at 541-685-7365.