Division of Environmental Health

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our Environmental Health Services office at 10777 Main Street in Fairfax is open during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday. Clinic services are not offered at this location.

703-246-2201
TTY 711

10777 Main Street
Fairfax, VA 22030

Pieter A. Sheehan, REHS,
Director, Division of Environmental Health

Environmental Health Programs Inspections

Onsite sewage system under constructionFairfax County Health Department Division of Environmental Health enforces county codes and regulations as well as state and federal laws by permitting and inspecting businesses and public facilities.

Environmental Health Specialists, trained public health professionals with science-based college degrees, conduct inspections to ensure the work conforms with the code, permit, and approved plans. These inspectors also investigate reports of public health and safety hazards anywhere in the community including residential, commercial and industrial areas.

Depending on the scope of the project and permit type, certain inspections from the list below will be conducted by the Health Department. Most of the inspections will be conducted without scheduling or prior notice. However, there are certain projects that require the applicant to schedule inspections. 

Complaint inspections require an Environmental Health Specialist to investigate the information provided to the Health Department. The specifics of the complaint will be evaluated and discussed with the owner or person in charge. The results of the inspection are also discussed with the complainant, when possible. Complaints may be reported to the Health Department from the county's Community Complaint Form or by phone.

Contact Us

You can contact the Division of Environmental Health to:

  • Learn more about inspection requirements
  • Schedule certain inspections
  • Submit a complaint

Call: 703-246-2201, TTY 771, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday

Inspection Types

Onsite Sewage (Septic)

  • Level 2 Review: Prior to the approval of any onsite sewage system (OSS) the Health Department must perform an onsite assessment to validate the Onsite Soil Evaluator (OSE) or Professional Engineer’s (PE) submission. 
  • Perc Check: Percolation and hydraulic conductivity tests are required as part of the private sector OSE/PE submission for approval of any OSS. The Perc Check inspection allows Health Department to verify the validity of the private sector testing method. 
  • Septic Layout: This inspection occurs before the OSS construction permit is issued. Inspection is conducted to confirm site conditions are consistent with the approved plan, and to field locate major components of the OSS prior to installation.   
  • Pre-Construction Inspection: The Health Department may require this inspection in order to verify appropriate clearing and grading work prior to the actual installation of OSS components but after the OSS construction permit is issued.
  • Open OSS: An inspection conducted to confirm all components of the onsite sewage system have been installed properly and in the correct location prior to backfilling. The inspection requirements will be based on the type of the system installed, i.e., Conventional Gravity Systems, Conventional Pump System or Alternative System.
  • Pump Inspection: An inspection conducted to confirm proper function of the system’s control panel, pumps and floats. 
  • Final Grade Inspection: An inspection conducted to confirm final grading over and around the tanks and absorption area comply with the approved grading plan. 
  • OSS Repair: An inspection conducted after completion of a repair by a licensed contractor.  
  • Sewage Pump Truck Inspection: An inspection conducted annually to ensure trucks hauling sewage on the roadways of Fairfax County meet the requirements as prescribed in Chapter 68.1, Individual Sewage Disposal Facilities, of the Code of the County of Fairfax.  
  • Septic Temporary Special Permit (TSP): Any TSP that includes temporary disposal of sewage must be reviewed and inspected by the Health Department.    
  • Annual Discharge Inspection: An annual inspection required for all discharge systems to verify compliance with the Regulations.
  • Courtesy Inspection: An inspection requested by the OSS Contractor to address specific conditions on challenging OSS sites prior to application submission.
  • Safe, Adequate, & Proper Evaluation: An evaluation of an existing OSS to ensure that the system and components meet current regulations or were constructed according to regulations in place at the time of installation. Fees associated.

Learn more about onsite sewage systems.

Well

  • Well Layout: This inspection occurs before the Water Supply System (WSS) construction permit is issued. Inspection is conducted to confirm site conditions are consistent with the approved plan, and to confirm that proposed well location is suitable.   
  • Final Grade Inspection: An inspection conducted to confirm final grading around the well complies with the approved grading plan and Private Well Regulations 
  • Well Repair: An inspection conducted after completion of a repair by a licensed contractor.  
  • For Sale Evaluation: An inspection conducted to inspect all components of the well system. This inspection includes a bacteriological water sample test. The inspection is conducted at the request of the owner when selling the property. Fees associated.    
  • Well Grout Inspection: An inspection conducted after well is drilled to verify that it is in the approved location and annular space is properly grouted. 
  • Pitless Inspection: An inspection conducted to verify components, connections and water line from the well to the house. 
  • Water Sample: An inspection conducted to collect a well water sample for bacteriological analysis. This inspection is required prior to final approval of new WSS and WSS repairs.
  • Routine Water Sample: An inspection conducted at the owner’s request, to obtain a water sample for bacteriological and/or chemical analysis of existing wells. Fees associated.  
  • Well Abandonment: An inspection conducted at the time of permanent filling of a well to confirm compliance with the approved permit. 

Learn more about Private Well Water Systems

Pool, Campground, Summer Camp, Childcare Establishment, Tattoo Establishment, Tourist Establishment, Massage Establishment, Marina

  • Preliminary Inspection: An inspection conducted at the request of the applicant to ensure they are ready for the Pre-Occupancy Inspection and opening of the establishment. Fees associated.
  • Routine Inspection: A comprehensive, periodic, unannounced inspection during which the EHS will evaluate the site to determine compliance with local, state and federal laws and regulations. Change of ownership requires a Routine inspection.
  • Follow-Up Inspection: An inspection conducted for the specific purpose of re-inspecting items that were not in compliance.
  • Pre-Occupancy Inspection: A scheduled inspection conducted to approve the construction of a new or remodeled establishment. 

Learn more about Environmental Health Program Codes and Permits

Food

  • Routine: A comprehensive, unannounced inspection during which the EHS will evaluate foodborne illness risk factors, public health interventions and good retail practices to determine compliance with regulations.
  • Risk Factor Assessment Inspection: A specialized, unannounced inspection during which the EHS will evaluate foodborne illness risk factors and public health interventions to determine compliance with specific critical and non-critical sections of the regulations.
  • Follow-Up Inspection: An inspection conducted for the specific purpose of re-inspecting items that were not in compliance at the time of the routine, risk factor assessment, or complaint inspection.
  • Training Inspection: A scheduled inspection during which the EHS provides formal food safety training to the foodservice employees. Training inspections can be initiated by the Health Department or at the request of the foodservice operator.
  • Pre-Opening Inspection: A scheduled inspection conducted to approve the construction of a new or remodeled establishment (or installation of new equipment). Review the Requirements for a Pre-Opening Inspection.
  • Foodborne Illness Investigation: An inspection conducted in response to a report of a possible foodborne illness. A risk factor assessment inspection is always conducted in conjunction with a foodborne illness investigation.

Learn more about Food Inspections and Enforcement Actions.

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