What To Ask During Septic Tank Inspection? (Solution found)

6 Questions You Need To Ask During A Septic System Inspection

  1. What Is A Septic System?
  2. How Often Should You Get A Septic Inspection?
  3. What Does A Septic Inspection Involve?
  4. How Much Does A Septic Inspection Cost?
  5. How Long Do Septic Systems Last?
  6. When Should You Repair Or Replace Your Septic System?

What questions should I ask when buying a house with septic system?

  • If you are purchasing a house with a septic system, you’ll want to know the answers to a few questions: How old is the house? When was the septic tank last inspected and pumped?

What questions should I ask about a septic system?

25 Questions You’re Afraid To Ask About Septic Systems

  • What takes place during a septic pumping service?
  • How often do I need to have my septic tank pumped?
  • Should I use a bacteria additive products?
  • Will there be odors while and/or after the septic pumping service?

What should I look for when inspecting a septic system?

There are three things a septic system inspector will check during an inspection including the integrity of the septic tank, the proper function of the distribution box, and a leach field that is working as intended. If all three of these components are working correctly you will have passed the septic inspection.

How do you check for septic tank problems?

8 Signs of Septic System Failure

  1. Septic System Backup.
  2. Slow Drains.
  3. Gurgling Sounds.
  4. Pool of Water or Dampness Near Drainfield.
  5. Nasty Odors.
  6. Unusual, Bright Green Grass Above Drainfield.
  7. Blooms of Algae in Nearby Water.
  8. High Levels of Coliform in Water Well.

What should not go in a septic system?

Don’t put things that aren’t biodegradable into your septic tank system such as:

  • Cigarette butts.
  • Disposable diapers.
  • Paper towels.
  • Plastics.
  • Sanitary napkins or tampons.

How long do septic tanks last?

A septic system’s lifespan should be anywhere from 15 to 40 years. How long the system lasts depends on a number of factors, including construction material, soil acidity, water table, maintenance practices, and several others.

How far is D box from septic tank?

The D-box is normally not very deep, often between 6″ and two feet to the top of the box. You may also see a pattern of parallel depressions, typically about 5 feet apart, that mark the individual drainfield leach lines. The D-box will at or near end of the drainfield area that is closest to the septic tank.

Why does my septic tank fill up when it rains?

Septic systems are designed to only handle wastewater from the house. If runoff water from the storm gets into the septic tank, it will get full and since the soil in the leachfield will be already too saturated, the water will start backing up into the house or from the manhole.

What to do after septic is pumped?

After you have had your septic tank pumped by a trusted septic company, there are some things you can and should do as the septic system owner.

  1. 1) Get on a Schedule.
  2. 2) Take Care of the System.
  3. 3) Know the Parts of Your System.
  4. 4) Check Other Possible Issues.

What is the most common cause of septic system failure?

Most septic systems fail because of inappropriate design or poor maintenance. Some soil-based systems (those with a drain field) are installed at sites with inadequate or inappropriate soils, excessive slopes, or high ground water tables.

What are the 3 stages of sepsis?

The three stages of sepsis are: sepsis, severe sepsis, and septic shock. When your immune system goes into overdrive in response to an infection, sepsis may develop as a result.

Why is the grass dying over my septic tank?

When you notice brown patches or lines over your septic system, it’s likely that the soil under the grass isn’t getting enough water. When it’s hot and sunny, the shallow soil can dry out quickly, keeping your grass from getting the moisture it needs.

Are long showers bad for septic systems?

Washing frequent, small loads of laundry or taking exceptionally long showers every day is all it takes to overload your septic system with too much water. The primary treatment tank needs time to break up solids before partly-treated water can enter the drain field.

What will ruin a septic system?

Any paper products like tissues, paper towels, tampons, or sanitary products, even some heavier toilet paper, will clog your system if you flush enough of it. Wet wipes are another product that you should never flush into a septic system.

Is toilet paper bad for septic tanks?

The best thing to do for your septic system is to be sure not to flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper, preferably single-ply toilet paper. It is not good for your septic system to flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper because it does not break down in the septic system correctly.

Septic Inspections: 6 Questions You Need to Ask

You might be wondering why you would need a septic check before you put your house on the market. Alternatively, are you purchasing a new home that has a septic system? Get professional information on septic systems and collaborate with a seasoned real estate agent throughout the process. Prospective home buyers typically engage an inspector to do a thorough assessment of the property before making an offer on it. The examination will typically involve a visual evaluation of the house’s structure as well as a search for pests.

Septic inspections are extremely important for your health and the health of anybody else who lives in your house, so homeowners should make a point of scheduling them on a regular basis.

In case you are buying or selling a home, the septic inspection will be an important part of the process.

Need help in the home selling process?

An experienced Partner Agent can assist you in navigating the choppy waters of business.

What is a septic system?

One in every five homes in the United States is equipped with a septic system, yet you’d be shocked how many people are unaware of what they are. A septic system is a system that is designed to remove waste from a home or building. During normal operation, it collects and filters water and garbage from the washer, sinks, showers, and toilets before returning it to the sink. The mechanism then re-distributes the energy back into the earth. The entire procedure contributes to the reduction of water and soil pollution.

The septic tank is where the water and trash from the residence are disposed of.

The liquid rises to the top of the container and passes through an absorption zone.

A layer of gravel serves as a drain field, allowing water to pass through it before entering the soil.

How often should you get a septic inspection?

A septic tank inspection is recommended at least once every three to five years, according to the majority of professionals. The examination normally takes place around the same time that you should have your septic tank pumped by a professional septic tank cleaning provider. In order to keep your septic tank healthy and in excellent functioning order, it is required to pump it regularly. Even though professionals recommend that homeowners get their septic tanks tested every five years, many homeowners wait considerably longer than this period.

At that point, inspectors will frequently recommend that you repair or replace your septic system, which can cost thousands of dollars if not done properly.

It can cost as much as $25,000, depending on the location of the system and the terrain of the land where the new system is being installed on the new system.

Maintaining frequent inspection and pumping will not only save you money on costly repairs in the future, but it will also help you avoid any unpleasant surprises if you decide to sell your home in the near future.

How is a septic inspection done?

Septic inspections may be divided into two categories.

Visual Inspections

If you are buying or selling a home, the home inspector will most likely do a visual assessment of the property. In order to do a visual examination, a few questions must be asked, such as the age of the house, how often the owner pumps the septic system, and when the previous inspection was performed. The inspector will next flush all of the toilets in the house and run all of the water in the house to ensure that the water pressure is enough and that everything is draining correctly. At the end of the inspection, the inspector will walk out to the drain field to ensure that there is no standing water, which might indicate the presence of a cesspool.

Full Inspections

A thorough inspection contains all that a visual inspection does, but it also goes above and beyond that level of service. This is the inspection you’ll want to have done every three to five years, at the absolute least. Inspectors will remove the lid from the septic tank and assess the amount of water in the tank during a comprehensive examination. The level of the water might indicate whether or not the water is draining adequately. The inspector will next run water through the home to ensure that it is correctly draining from the house to the septic tank and that the water level within the tank does not rise as a result of the additional water being introduced into the system.

Dye tests are conducted to determine how much dye is incorporated into the water that is draining and how much of it makes its way into the sewage treatment plant.

Inspecting the backflow level will reveal whether or not there is an issue with your drain field.

How much do septic inspections cost?

The cost of a septic inspection varies based on the level of detail with which they check the tank and the size of the tank, but for a 1,000-1,500 gallon tank, a comprehensive examination normally costs $300 to $600. If your local health agency offers discounted septic system inspections, be sure to inquire. Keep in mind that the cost of an examination will vary depending on who is checking your septic system and how long they will take. In certain areas (such as Texas), you are not need to obtain a license or certification order in order to examine sewage treatment plants.

The most qualified inspectors will hold licenses in a number of different areas through their state as well as on a national level.

How long do septic systems last?

Septic systems may endure for up to 25 years — and in some circumstances, indefinitely — depending on the conditions. Maintaining the system is critical to its overall performance and reliability. If you get your concrete septic tank inspected on a regular basis and make repairs as needed, it can endure for a lifetime or even longer.

Should I repair or replace my septic system?

Here are a couple of things to keep an eye out for.

Puddles in Your Yard

A smart option is to have an inspector come out and assess your septic system if there is any standing water in your yard over your septic system. Take precautions to keep yourself and your animals away from the water, since it may be contaminated with hazardous substances.

Backups

Having a significant number of plumbing backups is a symptom that something is wrong with your septic system. It might be anything as simple as a small repair or as complex as a complete tank replacement, among other things. In either case, an inspector will be required to determine the situation.

Healthy Grass

If the grass over your septic area is greener than the grass in other sections of your yard, it’s time to get your septic system inspected and cleaned. In the event that a septic system begins to fail, it releases more water into the ground, which might benefit your plant life but can also be hazardous to human health.

Results of an Inspection

Unless your assessment reveals tainted well water or irreversible damage to the septic tank itself, you will almost certainly need to replace your system.

How to Maintain Your Septic System

Tampons, paper towels, baby wipes, and any other foreign materials that cannot break down readily in your septic system should never be flushed down the toilet to ensure that your septic system lasts as long as possible. If you have a garbage disposal, use it to help break down any food that would otherwise block the pipes in your home. Make sure you never throw oil down the sink since it might clog up the septic tank and cause it to overflow. Try to choose a laundry detergent that is also safe to use with septic systems.

You should make certain that your sump pump is not connected to your septic system before starting.

Selling a House with a Septic System

Tampons, paper towels, baby wipes, and any other foreign materials that cannot break down readily in your septic system should never be flushed, as this will ensure that your septic system lasts for a longer period. If you have a garbage disposal, use it to help break down any food that would otherwise clog your pipes and drains. Make sure you never throw oil down the sink since it might clog up the septic tank and cause it to back up. Look for a laundry detergent that is also safe to use in septic tanks.

You should be certain that your sump pump is not connected to your septic system before installing one. Water from sump pumps is introduced into the septic system at an excessive rate, which can have an unfavorable influence on the way waste is decomposed.

Buying a House with a Septic System

Purchasing a home with a septic system necessitates answering a few questions. Here are some of the most important:

  • What is the age of the house
  • When was the last time you had your septic tank examined and pumped? Have you had any septic tank back-ups or standing water problems? Whether or if the septic tank has been repaired is unclear.

In addition, you’ll want to make certain that a third-party inspector does a comprehensive examination. When hiring an inspector, it may be tempting to hire someone who will go through the inspection fast and sign off with a gold star. However, you may end yourself acquiring a property that has a slew of issues down the future as a result of this decision. If you want assistance in locating a reputable inspector, your realtor will most likely be able to provide suggestions. In general, septic systems are quite efficient, as long as they are properly maintained.

You may also keep it in good condition by not flushing any non-biodegradable or harmful substances down your toilet.

Instead of doing it yourself, why not consult with a professional?

To get started, please call us at 1-833-2-CLEVER or fill out our online form today.

Related Articles

Septic systems are an environmentally beneficial, low-maintenance, and reasonably priced method of waste management. An aseptic tank can endure for several decades if it is properly maintained. If you want to be sure yours is in good shape, you should get it examined on a regular basis by a qualified specialist. Chamberlain Septic Service, Inc. Sewerin Webster, NY, is the most reputable septic business in the region. They go through four things you should ask while having your system inspected in this section of the article.

4 Questions to Ask When Having Your Septic Tank Inspected

Solid waste is separated into three levels in septic tanks: solids, liquids, and grease. Solid stuff, referred to as sludge, settles to the bottom of the lake. This layer must be flushed out every two or three years in order to avoid clogs. Pumping the tank on a regular basis helps to keep it operating efficiently and increases its lifespan. When you know the level of sludge in your system, you can plan when to schedule pumping.

2. Do I Have the Right Tank Size?

A septic tank that is not appropriately sized can put a pressure on the plumbing system, resulting in costly repairs and premature replacements. The wastewater from a unit that is too small will overflow and overwhelm the drain field, making it impossible for the wastewater to filter back into the earth. It may also cause the system to clog, resulting in a backup of water into your house. By inquiring as to whether the tank is the appropriate size for your household’s size and consumption, you may avoid costly difficulties down the road.

3. Are There Signs of Baffle Erosion?

Baffles are barriers that are located at the top of the tank’s chamber and serve to separate the waste from the water.

The majority of septic systems are equipped with an inlet and outflow baffle. Erosion must be handled as soon as possible in order to avoid waste mixing. If sediments and scum get into the drain pipes and leach field, they can cause extensive damage and expensive repairs.

4. How Can I Clean the Tank?

In a tank’s chamber, baffles are barriers that isolate the waste from the air above. An inlet and output baffle may be found on nearly all septic systems. In order to avoid trash mixing, erosion must be addressed quickly. if particles and scum get into the drain pipes and leach field, they can cause significant damage and expensive repairs

7 Questions A Home Buyer Should Ask About A Septic System

Septic systems are typically reliable; nevertheless, there are a few things you should be aware of before purchasing a home that have to do with septic systems. Here are some suggested questions to ask; some are only for informative purposes, but a couple of them might save you thousands of dollars over the course of your career.

See also:  What Does The Average Septic Tank Hold? (Perfect answer)

Can you answer the following questions?

What is the location of the septic tank? It is possible that you will require this information if you have your tank examined or repaired. Additionally, if you’re thinking of building an addition to your home, consider whether or not the tank would have to be relocated. What is the location of the tank lid or the riser access to the tank? It’s useful to know when you need to have your tank pumped or when you need to do maintenance. Is there enough space for a supplementary leach field in the event that the current one fails?

  1. A copy of the blueprints may be available from the local building agency or health department.
  2. What is the location of the filter access?
  3. If the leach field is of the chamber type, inquire as to whether or not there is an inspection port and where it is located.
  4. Monitoring and checking the water level in the leach field lines is made possible through the use of an inspection port.
  5. If the seller is unable to provide a response, the local building department or health department may be able to assist.
  6. What is the age of the septic system, including the tank, leach field, and filter?
  7. When was the last time you had your septic tank drained out?
  8. Is it true that they went ten years without pumping?
  9. When was the last time the tank was emptied?

Has the tank ever leaked, been repaired, or had a failure in the leach field? If that’s the case, queries like “who,” “what,” “when,” “where,” and “how” are appropriate. These types of inquiry may yield further information about the status of the septic system.

Are there any wells near the tank or leach field, if so where?

Under some conditions, systems that are installed too close to a well might lead to water pollution. Having the well water tested will assist in determining whether or not there is a cause for worry.

Has the home had additional bedrooms added or an addition put onto the home?

The number of bedrooms in a house is sometimes used to estimate the size of a septic tank that will be installed. In general, the number of bedrooms in a house corresponds to the number of people that live there. Therefore, there is an increase in the amount of human waste and water that is being discharged into septic tanks. Homes that have added one or more bedrooms may now have a septic system that is inadequately sized. System failure can occur when the system is not adequately scaled. As a result of the subject matter of some of our articles, we include links to goods that we believe may be of interest to readers.

Buying a House? Make Sure You Get a Septic System Inspection!

If you are in the process of purchasing a home, you are aware that there are several phases involved in the process. You put money together for a down payment, go to open houses, chat to sellers and real estate agents, and ultimately discover a place you love to call home. The exciting part is about to begin. There are several steps involved: making an offer, getting pre-approval, scheduling a home inspection, and eventually, after heaps of paperwork, claiming ownership of the property. But hold on a minute!

  • You might be asking why you would need to get your septic system inspected.
  • Septic systems that are in poor working order can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair or replace.
  • When a roof leak occurs or a break in the foundation occurs, you would want to be aware of the situation.
  • “All OK, but I’ve already completed a house inspection and a dye test.” “Doesn’t that suffice?” While these inspections may be sufficient to meet the criteria of a lender, they are insufficient to provide a full evaluation of a septic system.

What is a septic system inspection?

Performing a septic system inspection entails a thorough examination of all of the components of a septic system. The inspector will determine the location and condition of the septic tank, distribution box, and absorption area and make recommendations. In this process, he will uncover and evaluate all of the mechanical and electrical components of the system, including septic lines, baffles and filters, pumps and floats, alarms, and so on. During the inspection, he will open the septic tank (digging up the lids, if required) in order to check the wastewater sources from the home to the septic tank and physically inspect the septic tank at its operational level, according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

If the home has been vacant for an extended period of time or if the number of people living in the home is expected to increase, the inspector will conduct a hydraulic load test to determine whether the septic system’s absorption area is capable of handling the anticipated daily wastewater volume of the home buyer’s family.

For septic systems in Pennsylvania, this implies that the inspector must have received training and certification from the Pennsylvania Septage Management Association (PSMA), which has created a set of requirements for an objective septic system assessment.

Each PSMA septic system inspection finishes with the delivery of a thorough report.

However, while this analysis does not provide a guarantee, the findings drawn from it may be able to save you thousands of dollars in septic system repairs or replacement.

If you do not have a PSMA inspection and report, you run the danger of inheriting the financial burden of substantial septic system repairs or perhaps the installation of a whole new system completely.

Septic System Inspection vs. Home Inspection

Inspections of the inside and exterior of a home are performed by professionals who are well-versed in the identification of typical faults. They will inform you if there are any evident issues with the roof, windows, electrical system, interior plumbing, foundation, or any other visible components of the house. A house inspection, on the other hand, is just a visual assessment that is non-invasive. Consequently, house inspectors only report on the components of the home that they can physically see, and nothing else.

  1. This implies that the septic system is not included in the scope of a standard house inspection.
  2. There is a good chance that they may flush the toilets a few times to ensure that the system is not actively backing up, and they may even remove the cover from the septic tank (if they can find it).
  3. How can a home inspector tell you what condition your septic tank is in if there isn’t a pump truck available to empty it?
  4. Despite the fact that home inspectors are well-versed in many aspects of the property, they are neither equipped nor prepared to conduct a thorough examination of a septic system.
  5. Rely on a PSMA inspector that specializes in septic systems to provide you with the most thorough and insightful septic system inspection available.

Septic System Inspection vs. Dye Test

Dyes are used in a dye test to check that wastewater is appropriately routed into the septic tank and not elsewhere on the land. Dyes are brightly colored and non-toxic, and they are safe to use. In layman’s terms, a dye test demonstrates that water can travel from point A to point B. At the time of a dye test, a technician will flush dye tablets down the toilet and down the drain, check to verify that the right wastewater sources are entering the septic tank, and walk about the property looking for dye.

In the absence of a dye test, it is impossible to determine the size or condition of a septic tank.

Dye tests provide little information on the operation of critical septic system components such as baffles, pumps, floats, and alarms, among others.

When purchasing a property, don’t take a chance on a future filled with septic system failures and expensive repairs.

For a complete septic system inspection, rely on the PSMA-certified inspectors at Hapchuk, Inc. to conduct the work for you. Our professionals will supply you with all of the information and help you want in order to confidently acquire a house that has a septic system installed.

Don’t Forget The Septic Inspection When Buying a House

Septic system inspection is mandatory if you are planning to purchase a property that contains a septic tank. There are several things that may go wrong with septic systems, and with any sort of system, there is the potential for various problems to arise. Is it necessary to have a septic examination performed before purchasing a home? Before closing on a home, you should find out if there is an issue with the septic system that has to be addressed. The problems that might arise with a septic system can range from basic repairs to extremely sophisticated replacements that can cost tens of thousands of dollars or more.

How The Septic System Works

A septic system installed on a home property can be used in place of a municipal sewer system in some cases. In the United States, 25 percent of residences have decentralized systems, also known as septic systems, which are permanent components of our nation’s wastewater infrastructure, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. It all starts with the sanitary pipe that runs from the home and delivers waste water to the septic tank at the bottom of the hill. This big container is normally composed of concrete, fiberglass or steel, although it can also be made of plastic or aluminum.

  1. This tank collects wastewater from the home and allows particles to settle to the bottom of the tank, where they form a “sludge” layer that can be seen on the bottom of the tank.
  2. This scum layer forms a seal, which helps to keep air out of the tank, allowing bacteria to grow in the tank below.
  3. The area between the sludge and the scum is referred to as the effluent area.
  4. A T-shaped outlet is located inside the tank, which allows effluent to flow into the leach field by gravity, while baffles prevent scum and particles from passing through the tank and into the leach field.
  5. This box permits the effluent to flow uniformly into the proper chambers of the leach field, therefore reducing the risk of contamination.
  6. The final outcome is the same regardless of the method employed: the delivery of effluent into the leach field.
  7. There are a variety of various alternatives available when it comes to the sorts of chambers that may be employed.
  8. Leaching’s ultimate goal is to enable effluent to trickle down into the subsoil, where microorganisms in the top layers of soil continue to break down elements from the tank.
  9. Leach Field in a Residential Setting As you can see, a septic system is involved in a great deal of activity.
  10. A large number of homeowners are completely unaware of the importance of providing continuous maintenance, care, and cleaning for their septic systems.
  11. The results of the examination will be used to decide whether or not the tank needs to be emptied.

The cost of inspection and pumping might range between $300 and $500, depending on the location and size of the tank. The cost of maintenance is substantially less than the cost of repair or, in the worst case scenario, replacement of the equipment.

The Septic Inspection

If you’re doing the inspection as part of a house purchase, you’ll want to synchronize the scheduling of this test with the date of your regular property inspection to ensure that both tests are completed at the same time. Thus, if there are any issues with the plumbing systems of the home, these may be brought to the notice of the home inspector and documented in the inspection report. Additionally, grouping these inspections together will help you stay on schedule for any inspection contingency-related deadlines that you may be up against in the future.

At this point, you’ll be gathering documentation and obtaining answers to any queries you may have in preparation for the real inspection.

Because the system is underground, no examination can locate everything without excavating, which is unfeasible given the system’s location.

Here is a list of questions you should be prepared to answer before the inspection begins:

  • Is it possible that the system has ever been pumped? This one is significant since it is the only genuine maintenance issue that the seller would be required to have completed
  • It is also the most expensive. The seller’s knowledge of the location of the septic system is critical because if the seller does not know where the septic system is located, it is doubtful that they have performed continuous maintenance. Septic System Location Map – Regardless of whatever institution is in charge of supervising septic systems in your region, they should have a map of the septic system location given by the original home builder on hand. This is a critical piece of documentation for the septic inspection. It should not only display the position of the tank, but also the location of the leach field and the number of leaching Chambers
  • If there is any available history on the system’s maintenance – for example, something like:
  • The frequency at which the system has been pumped
  • What type of contractor was employed
  • Obtain any maintenance records that may exist
  • Have there been any issues
  • If so, have they been resolved?
  • Where have all the covers gone? -Manhole coverings should be installed over the tank’s chambers to prevent water from entering the tank. This will be the method through which the technician will get access to the tank in order to test and/or clean it.

Putting together this information will serve two purposes: first, it will assist the technician who will be inspecting the system in knowing what to check for, and second, it will provide you with an understanding of how the house seller maintained the system.

The On Site Inspection

After arriving at the residence, the technician will attempt to determine whether or not the sanitary pipe used to transport liquid to the system is functional and in good working order by conducting a flow test on the pipe. As part of this test, you will need to turn on all of your water faucets in your home to add or charge your system with enough water to sustain as many people as the system was designed to support for 24 hours, which is often several hundred gallons. If there is little or no water flowing into the tank, it is likely that there is an issue with the plumbing in the residence or with the sanitary line that has to be addressed.

  • If this is the case, an asewer line inspection may be required for the line.
  • The opposite is true if the water in the tank rises rapidly, which indicates that a problem is occurring downstream.
  • The flow test is the most important phase of the septic system inspection because it examines so many different parts of the system and ensures that the liquids are going through the system in the proper direction as intended.
  • A significant percentage of those solids will convert into sludge and settle at the bottom of the tank, even though it is intended that they remain in the tank until they are pumped out.
  • Once this is completed, they resume pumping the tank until they reach the underlying sludge layer, at which time they take another reading.
  • If this is not the case, the technician will be on the lookout for larger difficulties in the leach field at a later stage.
  • It is critical to keep the sediments and scum out of the distribution area and leach field to avoid contamination.

The leach field will be the final place that the technician will inspect.

They will be looking for any moist locations where water may be lingering, as well as smelling for any nasty orders that may have been generated by difficulties.

if the probe holes rapidly fill with water, it is quite likely that there is a malfunction with the system The distribution box of a septic system is another location of possible failure in a septic system.

Settlement or blockage of the distribution box are the most common causes of distribution box problems.

As you can see, there is a vast range of possible issues that might arise with a private home septic system, which you should be aware of.

Over 10% of all systems back up into homes or have wastewater seeping through the ground surface, according to data from the United States Census Bureau collected in 1995.

The United States Census Bureau conducted a survey in 1995.

You want to find out if there are any possible concerns with the property before you close on it. Including the testing of the septic system in the inspection process gives you the opportunity to engage the house seller in any later repairs through the use of an inspection objection contingency.

Additional Resources

  • When the technician initially arrives at the residence, he or she will attempt to determine whether or not the sanitary pipe used to transport fluids to the system is functioning and undamaged by conducting a flow test. It is necessary to turn on all of the water in the house in order to charge or feed the system with enough water to support the number of people the system was meant to serve for 24 hours, which is often a couple of hundred gallons. If there is little or no water flowing into the tank, it is likely that there is a problem with the plumbing in the home or with the sanitary line that has to be repaired. Similarly to the sanitary line on a standard municipal sewer system, this pipe has the potential to become misplaced or fractured, allowing tree roots or other debris to block the pipe and cause flooding within the home. As a result, the line may need to be inspected by a professional. If an issue like this occurs at the tank’s input line, the technician will most likely have to go back through the home’s plumbing system, inspecting each individual water supply, until the problem is identified and corrected. A rapid rise in water level in a tank indicates that there is most certainly a problem farther downstream, on the other hand. Water entering the system should drive effluent out through the baffles and into the leach field during this test, which is what should happen during the procedure. A septic system’s flow test is the most significant component of the inspection since it examines so many different parts of the system and validates that the liquids are passing through it in the proper direction. This should be followed by an examination of the tank itself and the amounts of scum, wastewater, sludge and sediments that have collected over time. A significant percentage of those solids will convert into sludge and settle at the bottom of the tank, even though it is intended that they remain there until they are pumped out. The technician will begin by measuring the depth of the scum layer on the surface of the water tank. Then they proceed to pump the tank until they reach the underlying sludge layer, at which time they take measurements of that layer as well. The depth of these two levels should be identical, with each layer accounting for around 30 percent of the total tank volume
  • The remaining space should be allocated to effluent collection and treatment. If this is not the case, the technician will be on the lookout for larger problems in the leach field at a later point. Because the particles in the tank require time to settle, the effluent area must account for a greater proportion of the system’s total area. Maintaining a clear separation between the distribution area and the leach field is essential. Because of this, the field may get clogged and fail, necessitating an extremely costly repair. The leach field will be the last location that the technician will inspect. An initial visual check is carried out to accomplish this. They will be on the lookout for any moist spots where water may be lingering, as well as any unpleasant odors that may have been generated by the situation. Finally, the technician will use a probe to check the leach field for hydraulic stress, which basically implies whether or not the leach field has been inundated. If the water in the probe holes fills up quickly, there is most certainly an issue with the system itself. In a septic system, the distribution box is another site of possible failure. The distribution box, as its name indicates, is in charge of dispersing wastewater equally around the leach field and into the surrounding environment. Clogging or settling of the distribution box are the most common causes of distribution box issues. If this is the case, the technician will need to dig the box in order to determine the source of the problem. According to what you have just learned, there is a wide range of possible difficulties that might arise with a privately owned residential septic system. A pre-purchase check is recommended, even though most systems continue to function well for years. According to 1995 U.S. Census data, more than 10% of all systems back up into homes or have wastewater seeping through the ground surface, and more than half of all systems in the United States were installed more than 30 years ago, when onsite rules were either non-existent or poorly enforced, respectively. The United States Census Bureau conducted a survey in 1995 that revealed If there are any possible concerns with the property, you should find out about them before you close on the deal. Including the results of the septic testing in the inspection process gives you the opportunity to include the house seller in any later repairs through the use of an inspection objection contingency.
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Septic System Inspections

Nick Gromicko, CMI®, and Kenton Shepard wrote this article. A septic system is a system that collects, processes, and disposes of waste water and solids that are generated by a building’s plumbing system. When the solids are partially broken down into sludge, they are separated from the liquid effluent (water) and scum in a septic tank (fat, oil and grease). Effluent is discharged from the tank on a regular basis into a drainfield, where it is naturally filtered by microorganisms and re-enters the groundwater supply.

The septic system should be tested at least once a year, and it should be done immediately before putting the house on the market for sale.

Prospective home buyers who have not recently had their septic system checked should insist on having the system checked before they acquire the property, since it is in their best interests.

When it comes time to examine or pump the tank, this is typically not a problem.

  • The placement of the tank should be depicted on a “as-built” design of the home. These designs are frequently kept on file by municipal health and zoning departments. It is possible that older systems do not have such a record. It is possible to get in touch with the prior owner
  • Modern tanks are equipped with risers that protrude clearly above the ground surface. It is possible to probe a suspicious location using a thin metal rod that has been placed into the soil. It is critical to do this carefully and only on soft, damp soil in order to prevent harming the tank and its accompanying pipelines. Another option is to use a shovel, although this will need a little more effort. If a sufficient number of tank components are made of metal, a metal detector can be utilized. A tiny radio transmitter that can be flushed down the toilet and followed by a receiver can be used to communicate. The grass that grows the most lushly in a yard is frequently seen just over the sewage tank. Snow melts more quickly above the tank than it does in the rest of the yard. While they are not failsafe techniques of finding a place, they have been shown to be beneficial in the past.

The tank’s placement should be depicted on a “as-built” design of the home. A lot of times, these drawings are kept with municipal health and zoning departments. Perhaps no such record exists in older systems. It is possible to get in touch with the prior homeowner; and Modern tanks have risers that are visible above the level of the ground. It is possible to probe a suspicious location using a thin metal rod that has been placed into the ground. It is critical to do this carefully and only on soft, damp soil in order to prevent harming the tank and its accompanying pipework.

If there are enough metal tank components, a metal detector can be employed.

Besides that, snow melts more quickly above the tank than it does anywhere else on the property.

  • Find out when the tank was last pumped by looking at the date on the tank. The sludge level should ultimately indicate if a tank has to be pumped, although having a record of past pumping dates might be useful as a reference. Using a “sludge judge” or a similar instrument, determine the amount of sludge present. It is normal for sludge to collect on the tank bottom, but it should not take up more than one-third of the tank’s total capacity or climb to the level of the baffles. The septic tank and drainfield should be located far away from wells and streams, for obvious reasons. Make certain that the system is large enough to accommodate the household it serves. A 1,200-gallon tank is normally required for a four-bedroom house, for example. The number of people that live in the house determines the size of the tank that is necessary. The tank’s capacity in gallons may be computed based on the size of the tank. For rectangular tanks, the capacity in gallons is equal to the product of the length, breadth, and depth in feet multiplied by 7.5. For circular tanks, the capacity in gallons is calculated as 3.14 times the radius squared x the depth in feet multiplied by 7.5. Check the ground surface for any liquid waste that has found its way to the surface. This is an unclean state that signals that the system is overburdened and needs to be repaired. In order to prevent wastewater contamination of groundwater and groundwater from flowing into the tank and causing it to overfill, make certain that it is waterproof. The presence of a riser lid should be checked for cracks and the integrity of the lid should be checked as well. Check to see that the baffles are securely attached to the tank’s inlet and exit pipes. It is recommended that each drain line receives the same quantity of wastewater. By opening the distribution box, you will be able to see what they are made of. If the box becomes tipped or blocked, it will distribute effluent in an excessively large amount, and it may even flood areas of the drainfield.

In a septic tank, baffles are components that restrict wastewater entry to a sufficient degree to guarantee that particles are distilled and that solids (as well as scum) are not discharged into the drainfield. It is via this process that they are able to protect the soil’s absorptive quality and hence extend the life of the entire system.

They are often constructed of the same materials as the septic tank, which might be fiberglass, steel, or concrete in construction. Inspectors should look for the following things in baffles:

  • The baffle is covered in solids. This should be reported as soon as possible because it implies overflow. There is evidence of prior overflow due to chemical and water erosion. Ideally, the sewage level should be several inches below the baffle top of the drain. A lower level implies leakage, whereas a greater level indicates obstruction.

Inspectors should be familiar with the following facts so that they may advise their clients about the various ways in which they might cause harm to their septic system:

  • The only thing that can be flushed down the toilet is bath tissue. Tampons, paper towels, cigarette butts, and diapers should all be disposed of in the garbage. In order to prevent microorganisms in the septic system from being damaged by household chemicals such as gasoline, paint, medicine, antifreeze, or pesticides from being flushed, they should never be put down the toilet or down the sink. In little volumes, detergents and bleach can make their way into the plumbing system. There should be no driving on or near the drainfield unless absolutely necessary. Their weight might cause damage to subsurface plumbing without them realizing it. There should be no other vegetation grown over the septic tank and drainfield. Roots from trees and huge bushes can create harm that is not visible. People are not permitted to excavate or construct structures on top of a drainfield. Ensure that any water drainage from rains, sump pumps, or any other source of surface water is routed away from the drainfield. An over-saturated drainfield can cause the water treatment process to be slowed down and plumbing fittings to get clogged. Fixing leaking faucets and toilets as soon as they occur is a simple method to extend the life of a septic system and avoid having to pay for an expensive replacement. Any waste of water in the home should be avoided at all costs. Taking shorter showers and avoiding using the garbage disposal are two examples of strategies to conserve water.
  • It is not recommended that inspectors enter the septic tank to search for cracks. Tank interiors are extremely filthy, and entering should be avoided at all costs. The fracture will most likely be located at the level of the effluent, which will have drained from the tank via the crack if one is there. An effluent level that is much lower than the level of the tank outflow is a clear indicator of the presence of a fracture. A tank that has flaws that enable sewage to escape into the surrounding soil is effectively a cesspool and should be removed as soon as possible
  • If the water comes from the tank, it indicates that the septic system is overburdened and has to be repaired. Sometimes, inspectors will use a dye that is flushed down the toilet to confirm that the water is coming from the residence and not from somewhere else. Despite the fact that this metric might be beneficial, it is not an accepted means of testing the operation of a septic system. A malfunctioning septic system will be confirmed if dye from the flushed dye shows in the puddle
  • However, a working septic system is not guaranteed if dye does not appear. It may take many days for the dye to develop, and it may be too diluted to see properly
  • It is outside the scope of a standard house inspection to evaluate a septic system, and this needs specialized skills. Laws differ from one jurisdiction to the next, and inspectors should be well-versed in them before providing this job. They should disclaim all responsibility for any component of the septic system examination that they did not do

Septic systems are meant to manage hazardous waste, and they may pose major health risks to both residents and inspectors if they are not properly maintained. Precautions include the following, in no particular order:

  • Solid waste should be removed from septic tanks by a professional septic tank pumping service, not by an inspector. No one else should be allowed to enter a tank unless they are a licensed and properly equipped professional. Noxious gasses such as methane can induce asphyxiation and death in a matter of minutes. When a septic tank begins to exhibit indications of fragility, proceed with extreme caution! Collapse has the potential to be deadly. Keep an eye out for tanks with rusted metal, improvised lids, or anything else that seems to be in unsafe condition.

Rather than an inspection, solid waste should be removed from septic tanks by a professional septic tank pumping company. No one else should be allowed to enter a tank unless they are a licensed and well trained professional. Gaseous toxins such as methane can induce asphyxiation and death in a very short period of time. In the event that a septic tank exhibits indicators of fragility, exercise extreme caution! In certain cases, collapse is deadly. Precaution should be used while dealing with tanks that have rusted metal, improvised covers, or anything else that seems unstable.

Septic Inspections When Buying or Selling a Home

You could be perplexed as to why you might want an aseptic examination before selling your house. Alternatively, are you purchasing a new home that has a septic system? Get professional information on septic systems and collaborate with a seasoned real estate agent throughout the process. Prospective home buyers typically engage an inspector to do a thorough assessment of the property before making an offer on it. The examination will typically involve a visual evaluation of the house’s structure as well as a search for pests.

Septic inspections are extremely important for your health and the health of anybody else who lives in your house, so homeowners should make a point of scheduling them on a regular basis.

In case you are buying or selling a home, the septic inspection will be an important part of the process.

What is a septic system?

What exactly is a septic inspection and why would you need one before selling your house? You may also be considering the purchase of an existing home that has an installed septic tank. Expert septic system guidance, as well as collaboration with a seasoned real estate agent, are available. Prospective home buyers typically employ an inspector to do a thorough assessment of the property before making an offer to purchase it. This involves assessing the construction of the house and checking for pest infestations, which is standard practice in this industry.

Septic inspections are critical for the health of you and anybody else who lives in your house, so homeowners should make a point of scheduling them on a regular basis.

In contrast, because septic systems are buried in the ground, they are typically the last item on the thoughts of many homeowners until anything goes wrong with them. This guide will teach you all you need to know about septic inspections if you’re buying or selling a home in the future.

How often should you get a septic inspection?

The majority of specialists agree that you should get your septic tank examined at least once every three to five years. The examination normally takes place around the same time that you should have your septic tank pumped by a professional septic tank cleaning provider. In order to keep your septic tank healthy and in excellent functioning order, it is required to pump it regularly. Even though professionals recommend that homeowners get their septic tanks tested every five years, many homeowners wait considerably longer than this period.

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At that point, inspectors will frequently recommend that you repair or replace your septic system, which can cost thousands of dollars if not done properly.

How is a septic inspection done?

Septic inspections may be divided into two categories.

Visual Inspections

If you are buying or selling a home, the home inspector will most likely do a visual assessment of the property. In order to do a visual examination, a few questions must be asked, such as the age of the house, how often the owner pumps the septic system, and when the previous inspection was performed. The inspector will next flush all of the toilets in the house and run all of the water in the house to ensure that the water pressure is enough and that everything is draining correctly. At the end of the inspection, the inspector will walk out to the drain field to ensure that there is no standing water, which might indicate the presence of a cesspool.

Full Inspections

A thorough inspection contains all that a visual inspection does, but it also goes above and beyond that level of service. This is the inspection you’ll want to have done every three to five years, at the absolute least. Inspectors will remove the lid from the septic tank and assess the amount of water in the tank during a comprehensive examination. The level of the water might indicate whether or not the water is draining adequately. The inspector will next run water through the home to ensure that it is correctly draining from the house to the septic tank and that the water level within the tank does not rise as a result of the additional water being introduced into the system.

Dye tests are conducted to determine how much dye is incorporated into the water that is draining and how much of it makes its way into the sewage treatment plant.

Inspecting the backflow level will reveal whether or not there is an issue with your drain field.

It is therefore necessary to check the flow level once again to ensure that every part of the septic system is functioning properly and that there are no obstructions. Morse Engineering and Construction can provide you with further information. Source:listwithclever.com

What To Expect When You’re Inspecting

When a septic inspection is required for a house sale, the process can be confusing and time-consuming. You have a slew of tasks to complete in preparation for the property sale. Furthermore, you are absorbing a great deal of knowledge in areas that may be unfamiliar to you. Then there’s the possibility of unexpected expenses and testing as part of the inspection process, which might add to the overall cost of the inspection. This article should assist you in removing some of the haze around the purchase of a property with a septic system and the various tests that will be required.

It’s critical to understand our code of conduct for conducting these inspections before we get started with the process.

Take a look at our ebook, which is provided below.

Take a look at the link provided below.

Our Philosophy

We think that it is our ethical obligation, regardless of who we work for, to ensure that the septic system is in good operating order for the future buyer of the property. When we arrive at a residence, we ask ourselves the following question: Would I buy a home with this septic system? We also think that we are here to assist, rather than hinder, the selling of your house. It is important for us to see properties sold at settlement since home sales are the reason we have a position. This implies that we don’t charge for unneeded repairs or testing that isn’t absolutely essential.

Septic Inspection Process

The basic concept for the septic inspection procedure is straightforward. We make our way down the septic system’s line, inspecting each component as we go. This procedure follows the flow of sewage from the inside out, beginning at the sewage treatment plant and finishing at the drain field. We’ll start by compiling as much information as we possibly can. We inquire about the history, upkeep, and placement of the septic system. We can start examining right away from here.

Sewer Line Inspection

The first component we’ll look at is the sewage system that runs through the building. The pipelines that should be connected to the sewage line are checked to determine if there are any that are not. Water that has been discharged from the sink or washing machine would be included in this category. Aside from that, we are looking for lines that should not be entering the sewage system but are yet doing so. Consider the case of a flooded basement sump pump. This is also a good opportunity to check to see if your pump tank has an alert system in place.

Afterwards, we’ll open up your sewer line and thoroughly check it all the way up to your tank.

This enables us to provide evidence of any difficulties that may have occurred.

This method can be used to check for sags, however it is not totally accurate in all cases.

A push camera inspection allows us to view far more information than we would otherwise be able to. Broken or fragmented pipes, root incursion, and deteriorating pipes are examples of such issues. The structural integrity of the septic tank is the next thing we’ll look at.

Septic TankInspection

We’re now prepared to inspect your septic tank in further detail (s). When we open up your tank, we check to see how much liquid is still within. Many people will look at how full the tank seems and conclude that it is ready to be pumped. This is actually a positive indication. To allow the septic tank to overflow into the next component, it must be completely full with waste. If the level is excessively low, it indicates that either the septic tank has a crack or that the tank has just been drained out of its contents.

  • After the tank has been opened and the liquid level has been verified to be at the right operating height, we will proceed to inspect the tank’s inside to determine its overall condition.
  • In order to photograph the inside of the tank, we utilize a digital camera to photograph the inside of the tank during the inspection.
  • Each and every one of the septic tanks must be opened and examined.
  • After the septic inspection report is completed, a pumper will be dispatched to the site prior to settlement to empty the tanks.
  • Once the status of the drain field has been assessed, this will not be possible to accomplish.
  • In certain septic systems, there will be an additional tank that will be utilized to store the pump.

Septic Pump Tank Inspection

The pump tank is utilized in particular types of drain fields. The purpose of a pump tank is distinct from that of a septic tank. The pump tank is not intended to treat sewage in the manner of a septic tank; rather, it is intended to contain the pump and accept enough effluent to allow it to be pumped to the drain field. However, we will also need to examine the operation of the pump, which will be carried out after we have examined the inside construction of the tank. The pump is controlled by a float switch that hangs above it.

An alarm switch is located above the float switch.

The homeowner will be notified if the pump is not operating as expected via this alarm.

The alarm is your final line of defense against sewage building up to a point where it will overflow the tank’s capacity and leak out. After we have finished inspecting all of the tanks, we will proceed down the line to the drain field.

Septic Drain Field Inspection

After leaving the processed sewage treatment system, it is discharged onto the drain field or into the sewer system. This is the most costly part of the septic system to install. The drain field is discovered by the use of a probe rod that is inserted into the earth. When we come over the stone gravel in the drain field, we know we’ve reached the right place. We may use this information to establish the size, shape, and kind of system. When we evaluate the drain field, we are most concerned with the amount of moisture that is present in the field.

It is unacceptable if the liquid level rises over the stone level in the drain field.

The kind of system will influence whether or not the standing liquid is close enough to the top for additional testing.

How a Buyer Can Prepare For a Septic Inspection

While we are conducting the inspection, you are welcome to ask us any and all questions you may have. We appreciate clientele that are well educated. It’s one of the reasons we developed this blog, so that you may learn more about the system in which you’re making an investment. Typically, we will locate every component in the system and then visit to your location to lead you through our field survey. The benefit of this is that we can identify anything that may be wrong with your system before we walk you through it, and we can give you a tour of your system while explaining how it works.

Read materials ahead of time

When we speak with customers, they sometimes appear to be overwhelmed by the amount of new information. You’re attempting to visualize how everything works while also attempting to comprehend the issues with the system as a whole. On top of that, you may also be undergoing a house inspection at the same time. This might result in an overabundance of information being presented. If you spend a little time before the inspection gaining a general understanding of how a system operates and the difficulties that might occur, you will be able to comprehend a great deal more on the day of the examination.

We are continually adding new material to our website that is relevant to your unique system, so check back often.

Besides this website, there are other sites that provide some information, but they are difficult to discover and some of the content is untrustworthy.

They give a couple of good briefs on the septic system and basic maintenance to help you along.

How a Home Seller Can Prepare For a Septic Inspection

Occasionally, a pumper will propose that you pump your tank before putting your house on the market for sale. Don’t pay attention to them! When you pump a tank, it causes the inspection to be delayed. When a tank is pumped out, the sewage that would normally be discharged into the drain field is instead used to fill the tanks back up. In this way, the drain field can be dried out. It would be the equivalent of leaving your house unoccupied for a few weeks. It does not provide a realistic depiction of the drain field’s capacity to drain properly.

When an inspector notices that the septic tank has been drained out, he will order a hydraulic load test to be performed. In addition, you will be responsible for the cost of pumping the tanks out again after the buyer’s inspection is completed.

Septic Inspection Precertification

Assume you’ve decided to put your house on the market. Everything appears to be in fine working order following the house inspection, and the buyers are looking forward to closing. After that, the septic inspection results in an unsatisfactory result. You’re now trapped in the middle of upgrading a tank or installing a new drain field. Permits will be required, as will perc testing with the health department, bidding out to contractors, and substantial construction for a replacement drain field to be completed.

This is why we recommend that you have your septic system precertified before putting your house on the market for sale.

This will relieve a great deal of tension throughout the house selling process, and the realtor will have a septic report to use to help advertise the home more effectively.

Gather Any Paperwork on the Septic System

It might be beneficial to have any permits or prior septic inspection reports on hand before the inspector arrives to expedite the inspection process. A permit aids in the identification of the locations of each component of the system. Having a permit is often all that is required to locate a concealed secondary septic tank or an additional trench if one exists. It is important to keep track of any septic inspection reports you obtain before putting your property on the market, or if you have an inspection record from when you sold your home.

Know that you can use a second inspection.

It might be beneficial to have any permits or past septic inspections on hand before the inspector arrives, as this will expedite the procedure. When locating each component of a system, a permit might be quite helpful. Having a permit is often all that is required to locate a concealed secondary septic tank or an additional trench if one has been built. It is important to keep track of any septic inspection reports you obtain before putting your property on the market, or if you have one from when you sold your home.

What if my septic inspection did not pass?

It is necessary to begin the procedure for a new replacement installation if your drain field is still unsatisfactory even after seeking a second opinion on the matter. To do this, a contractor or designer must collaborate with the health agency to conduct perc tests, describe soils, and identify a new absorption region. As part of the design process, we ensure that the system is one that will function for your soils and has a suitable price tag as well.

Hydraulic Load Test

By inserting a probing rod into a drain field, an inspector is making the assumption that there has been a continuous flow of waste into the septic system. If there is no sewage entering the drain field, it is impossible to determine whether or not the drain field is functioning properly. It is at this point that a hydraulic load test becomes essential. The purpose of a hydraulic load test is to put a particular amount of water into a field in order to determine whether or not it is functioning properly.

This can arise as a result of a vacant home or as a result of a septic system component that has been repaired and now requires testing.

This may appear to be a brief period of time to cause an inspection to be delayed.

The majority of individuals don’t take vacations of that duration more than once a year, if at all.

Throughout the rest of the year, that drain field is constantly receiving wastewater. We want to test the drain field when it appears to be in the same condition as it would be throughout the majority of the year.

How long does a septic inspection take?

The length of time it takes to accomplish a septic inspection is determined by how long it takes to locate and expose every component of the sewage system. We strive to be both comprehensive and speedy in our work. It is impossible to give an exact time due to the fact that it is dependent on the type of septic system that is being examined. If a system has more components, and they are all difficult to identify, it will take significantly longer to check the system as a whole. It’s crucial to understand that a septic check might take several days in some cases.

  1. When a hydraulic load test is required, the most typical reason for an inspection to span many days is that it must be completed.
  2. As early as possible throughout the agreement time, we encourage that you contact us to discuss your concerns.
  3. Another element to consider is the amount of rain that falls.
  4. This is not a typical problem and would only be required in the event of a heavy downpour.

What is included in a septic inspection?

A septic inspection includes two more items in addition to the actual inspection process: a septic inspection report and a video of the sewer line. Upon completion of the inspection, we write every septic report within 24 hours. We will explain all of our findings as well as any measures that need to be performed in the report. These are summarized once again towards the conclusion of the report. We’ve also included a few pointers on how to keep your machine in good working order. When we check the sewage line, we will videotape the entire process.

Please keep this video and the septic inspection report for your personal records, and we will email it to you.

Having a basic understanding of septic inspections might make your day of testing a whole lot less difficult to comprehend and manage.

You can find out more about our ebook here.

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