Training for Septic System Installers and Inspectors

In the news: Septic Systems: The Underground Cost of North Carolina’s Growth

For complete requirements for certification, visit , click on how to receive certification.

Steps for Certification as a North Carolina Installer or Inspector


Jamie Luther

Jazmin Garcia-Lawson

1. Apply to the NCOWCICB (state board).  Download the application from the NCOWCICB website:
2. Register for the initial certification training.
  • Installers: Register for the Introductory Installer Training below.
  • Inspectors: Register for the Inspector School below.
3. Register for additional training and the exam as needed, depending on certification type.  For additional 3-hour and 6-hour training opportunities offered by NC State University, see this website:
  • Installers:
    • For Grade 1 or 2, you’ll need one additional day of training (6 hours) after the 18-hour Intro. (There is no exam for Grades 1 or 2, only the training requirement.)
    • For Grade 3 or 4, you’ll need 2 additional days of training (9-12 hours) after the 18-hour Intro plus an exam. The exam is offered by the NCOWCICB on a different date.
  • Inspectors: After the school, you’ll need an additional day of training (6 hours) plus an exam to finish your certification. The exam is offered by the NCOWCICB on a different date.  For requirements, visit , click on how to receive certification.
4. Keep up with your continuing education.  All certifications require continuing education training each year prior to Nov 15, in order to renew the certification for the next year. The CE requirement begins with the first year of certification.  For example, if you activate your certification in 2024, the NCOWCICB will require CE by Nov 15, 2024 to renew for 2025.  
  • Installers: Grade 1 and 2 Installers need 3 hours/year. Grade 3 and 4 Installers need 6 hours/year.
  • Inspectors: Inspectors need 6 hours/year.

Installer Training

Inspector School
for Time-of-Sale Inspections


Additional Training Options


This course introduces students to the basics of onsite wastewater and illustrates how septic systems function. You will learn the most important points about installing gravity distribution septic systems and how to use Best Management Practices for system installation to increase the lifespan of your clients’ septic systems.

*Effective 9/1/2024 the Installer Introduction Class will be changed from an 18-hour class to a 24-hour class.

2024 Schedule

Feb 19-21, 2024 (Mills River) – FULL

May 7-9, 2024 (Raleigh) – FULL

August 19-21, 2024 (Mills River) – FULL

Nov 4-6, 2024 (Raleigh) – click here to join WAITING LIST 

We are working through the  waiting lists to register for the upcoming workshops.

Registration Fee:
$495 – Due at time of registration.
Make Check Payable to NCSU

(will change to 8:00am-5:00pm in November 2024)
Day 1
  • Septic system function and operation
  • Understanding conventional systems
  • Septic systems in the environment
  • Permitting
  • State rules and enforcement
  • Planning and site preparation
  • Tanks, trenches, outlet filters, & risers
  • Field demonstrations
Day 2
  • Distribution devices
  • Conventional, accepted, & innovative systems
  • Layouts and elevations
  • Safety
  • Field demonstrations
Day 3
  • Modifications to systems
  • Local health department inspections
  • Layout problems
  • Drain field and trench media
  • Field demonstrations
  • Functioning as a team with the local health department

Proper inspections are key to ensuring an onsite system is acceptable for property transfer or adding on to an existing structure. This school was designed specifically to teach individuals how to properly perform property transfer inspections and prepare them for the certification exam offered by the NCOWCICB.

2024 Schedule
May 20-22, 2024 (Raleigh)

click course date to register

Dec 3-5, 2024 (Raleigh) Registration to open Spring 2024 – click here to join WAITING LIST


Registration Fee:
$495  – Due at time of registration

Make Check Payable to NCSU

Day 1
  • Principles of wastewater
  • Types of onsite wastewater systems used in NC
  • Basic rules of onsite systems
  • Inspector rules  
  • How to get certified
  • Safety
  • Preparation prior to site visit/logistics
  • Field instruction
  • Inspection Practicum-actively in use onsite wastewater system
Day 2
  • Onsite wastewater system components
  • Site/source review
  • Tankage inspection
  • Controls and Pumps
  • Distribution and dispersal
  • Field instruction
  • Pumping of Septic Tank
  • Inspection Practicum-actively in use onsite wastewater system
Day 3
  • Advanced pretreatment
  • Disinfection
  • Field Instruction
  • Final report
  • Special Conditions
  • Protecting the Industry
  • Inspection Practicum-actively in use onsite wastewater system
  • Onsite Inspector Review
Continuing Education Options:
3-hour and 6-hour courses can be found on this webpage:


NCOWCICB Exam Information
Visit the NCOWCICB website for exam dates and the exam registration form.


Registration Information

NOTE:  Your course fee must be paid in full upon acceptance to a course.  No refunds, transfers, or cancellations will be allowed.

Registration fees include course materials, bottled water, lunch each day, and a certificate of attendance.

Raleigh Classroom Address:

Booth Field Learning Lab
4000 Chi Road
Raleigh, NC 27603

Mills River Classroom Address:

Mountain Horticultural Crops Ext Ctr
455 Research Dr
Mills River, NC 28759