Written by IAPMO 3:30 pm Code News, IAPMO News

IAPMO Publishes UPC Private Sewage Disposal Systems as a Standalone Document

Ontario, Calif. — The International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO®) has published IAPMO/UPC/Appendix H-2021, Private Sewage Disposal Systems, as a standalone document. This document is a direct extract from Appendix H of the 2021 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC®), which was developed via an American National Standards Institute (ANSI)-accredited development process. The IAPMO/UPC/Appendix H-2021 is a document that can be utilized by any jurisdiction regardless of the adopted plumbing code or building codes.

A copy of IAPMO/UPC/Appendix H-2021 can be purchased HERE

This document provides general guidelines for the materials, design, and installation of private sewage disposal systems. Where permitted by the local plumbing code, plumbing systems can be connected to a private sewage disposal system in accordance with the provisions of this appendix. The type of system is determined based on location, soil porosity, and groundwater level, and designed to receive all sewage from the property. The private sewage disposal system, except as otherwise approved, consists of a septic tank with effluent discharging into a subsurface disposal field, into one or more seepage pits, or into a combination of a subsurface disposal field and seepage pits. 

All references to other sections of the UPC have been extracted to avoid dependance on additional documents. Jurisdictions should find it useful to adopt this standalone document as it eliminates the burden of having to purchase multiple documents.

The UPC has addressed private sewage disposal systems since the 1976 edition. These requirements have been improved each subsequent edition to address the latest technology and installation methods. IAPMO understands that there is no need to reinvent the wheel, as a lot of hard work and effort went into the creation of Appendix H. Therefore, by request of the industry, the widely used provisions were made available for the public as a standalone document to utilize regardless of locally adopted codes.

IAPMO also offers free code interpretation, regardless of membership status, to address any confusion related to private sewage disposal systems.

Introduced in Los Angeles in 1928 and formally published as the Uniform Plumbing Code in 1945, the UPC is developed to govern the installation and inspection of plumbing systems as a means of promoting the public’s health, safety and welfare. Developed and subsequently republished at the conclusion of each three-year code cycle, the UPC is designed to provide consumers with plumbing systems that meet all applicable standards while, at the same time, allowing latitude for innovation and new technologies.

Should you have any questions regarding private sewage disposal systems, please contact Enrique Gonzalez at (909) 230-5535 or email at enrique.gonzalez@iapmo.org.


IAPMO develops and publishes the Uniform Plumbing Code®,the most widely recognized code of practice used by the plumbing industry worldwide; Uniform Mechanical Code®; Uniform Swimming Pool, Spa and Hot Tub Code®; and Uniform Solar Energy, Hydronics and Geothermal Code — the only plumbing, mechanical, solar energy and swimming pool codes designated by ANSI as American National Standards — and the Water Efficiency Standard (WE-Stand)™. IAPMO works with government, contractors, labor force, and manufacturers to produce product standards, technical manuals, personnel certification/educational programs and additional resources in order to meet the ever-evolving demands of the industry in protecting public health and safety.

Last modified: December 30, 2022