Demolition Practices

When planning total or partial demolition of a building, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) requires certification that water and sewer services have been disconnected from the structure or portion of the structure awaiting demolition. This certification is required before county officials can issue a demolition (razing) permit.

For total demolition, WSSC provides customers with a written certification after the following steps have been completed:

  1. The water must be turned off, the turn-off fee and any outstanding balance paid, and the meter removed.  To request the disconnection and removal of meters one and a half inches or smaller, please contact WSSC’s Customer Service Department at 301-206-4001 or  If the meter is located inside a building, our field staff will need to enter the premises to remove it.  If the meter is one inch or smaller, the turn-off fee will be $80.  If the meter is over one inch, the turn-off fee will be $203.  A plumber must remove and return meters two inches and larger to the Bladensburg Service Center, 4101 Lloyd Street, Hyattsville, Maryland

Please note: if the meter is in a meter vault, plumbers must abide by the OSHA federal regulation for entering confined spaces, OSHA 29 CFR 1910.146, Permit-Required Confined Space. For more information please see the OSHA website at

  1. A WSSC licensed Registered Master Plumber, licensed to work in the Washington Suburban Sanitary District, must cap water and sewer lines at the property line. Find a plumber
  2. Our Regulatory Services Group must inspect the plumber’s work and report the results on a “short form postcard permit.”  A copy of the postcard permit verifying that the work passed inspection should accompany the request for certification.  We can also verify that the work passed inspection if you contact us at 301-206-4001 or with the permit number or service address.  To arrange postcard permit inspections, the Master Plumber should call 301-206-4004between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.  

For partial demolition, the water serving the building or the portion of the property pending demolition must be turned off.  Both water and sewer lines must be capped as far away as practical from the structure scheduled for demolition.  Similar to total demolition, a Registered Master Plumber must accomplish the work and have it inspected under the postcard permit.  The Master Plumber should call 301-206-4004, between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, to schedule a postcard permit inspection.  Partial demolitions do not require payment of the outstanding account balances or the removal of the on-site meter, because WSSC will continue to bill the property for services.  

Those in need of certification for structures when WSSC does not provide service (well and septic or privately owned and maintained water supply/sewage disposal systems) should contact WSSC’s Customer Service Department at to obtain the necessary written certification.

- Important Notice -

To obtain information about SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT CHARGE (SDC) credits for fixtures to be removed from a structure to be demolished, please contact Permit Services at 301- 206-4003 or WSSC must verify the fixture count for SDC credits prior to removal of fixtures and demolition of the building. A Registered Master Plumber must apply for the SDC Fixture Credit Permit and schedule the fixture count inspection.

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