- In most cases you can obtain a drawing of the location of your septic tank from the Health Department. It is rare that finding and uncovering the tank should be an additional cost. Find out up front.
Are septic tank locations public record?
Contact your local health department for public records. These permits should come with a diagram of the location where the septic system is buried. Depending on the age of your septic system, you may be able to find information regarding the location of your septic system by making a public records request.
How do I find out where my septic tank is?
Follow the Main Sewer Line Look for a pipe that’s roughly four inches in diameter that leads away from your house. Remember the location of the sewer pipe and where the pipe leaves your home so you can find it outside. The sewer pipes will lead to where your septic tank is located.
Will metal detector find septic tank?
If it’s Concrete or Steel, Use a Metal Detector. Based on your conclusions in Step 3, if your septic tank is likely made from concrete or steel, a metal detector can make the task of locating it much easier. But not just any metal detector will do.
How close to a property line can a septic tank be?
Common guidelines require at least 50′ clearance distance between a well and a septic system tank or 150′ between a well and a septic drainfield or leaching bed but you will see that different authorities may recommend different distances. Local soil and rock conditions can make these “rules of thumb” unreliable.
Do I have to change my septic tank?
Under the new rules, if you have a specific septic tank that discharges to surface water (river, stream, ditch, etc.) you are required to upgrade or replace your septic tank treatment system to a full sewage treatment plant by 2020, or when you sell a property, if it’s prior to this date.
How do I find my septic lateral lines?
Call your local electric utility provider or gas company to locate buried gas or utility lines before digging. A septic tank probe can also help you find the location. Stick the long, thin metal probe into the ground until you feel it hit the tank and feel the edges of the tank.
How much does it cost to pump a septic tank?
How much does it cost to pump out a septic tank? The average cost is $300, but can run up to $500, depending on your location. The tank should be pumped out every three to five years.
How do you tell if your septic tank is full?
How to tell your septic tank is full and needs emptying
- Pooling water.
- Slow drains.
- An overly healthy lawn.
- Sewer backup.
- Gurgling Pipes.
- Trouble Flushing.
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.
Are septic tanks metal?
Steel Septic Tank—Steel septic tanks are the least durable and least popular tank option. Designed to last no more than 20-25 years, they can be susceptible to rust even before that. Steel top covers can rust through and cause an unsuspecting person to fall into the tank.
Are septic tanks made of metal?
The majority of septic tanks are constructed out of concrete, fiberglass, polyethylene or coated steel. Typically, septic tanks with a capacity smaller than 6,000 gallons are pre-manufactured. Larger septic tanks are constructed in place or assembled on-site from pre-manufactured sections.
Can you use a metal detector to find sewer lines?
Using a Plumbing Pipe Detector to Locate Underground Pipes. As a property owner there will be times when, for a variety of reasons, you will need to locate underground metal objects. For example, using a pipe locator metal detector you can easily pinpoint leaking underground pipes quickly.
How far from the house should a leach field be?
Local codes and regulations that stipulate the distance of the septic tank from the house vary depending on the locale, but the typical minimum distance is 10 feet.
Can you build a deck over a septic tank?
You should never build a deck over a septic field; doing so will prevent the natural draining and dissipation of the effluent. This can ruin the septic system, not to mention releasing foul smells into the air all around your deck. The dissipating effluent can also rot the deck from underneath.
How far do septic lines run from tank?
A typical septic tank has a 4-inch inlet located at the top. The pipe that connects to it must maintain a 1/4-inch-per-foot slope toward it from the house. This means that for every 10 feet of distance between the tank and the house, the inlet must be 2 1/2 inches below the point at which the pipe exits the house.
Florida Department of Health in Volusia
- How can a new business determine whether or not it need an examination of its septic system? In order to add a room to my house, why do I need to get the current septic tank system authorized first? Who determines whether or not I require a mound septic system
- What exactly do I need to do in order to fix my drainfield? Does the government offer any help programs for septic system repairs?
1. What is the reason for an inspection of the septic tank system for a new business?
A shop in the perfect size and location has been found for my new business, which I plan to launch shortly after. When I went to get my Business Tax Receipt (BTR), (previously known as an occupational license), they informed me that I needed to have the septic tank system approved by the Florida Department of Health in Volusia County. I agreed to this. A: According to Florida Statute 381.0065, all companies that rely on a septic tank system for sewage disposal are required to acquire clearance from the local health authority whenever the company owner, the kind of business, or a tenant changes.
Modifications to business operations may result in an increase in sewage flow or a change in sewage characteristics.
Who is in charge of completing and submitting the application?
Section 1: Introduction
2.What is the reason to have the existing septic tank system approved before I add a room onto my home?
I intend to expand my current residence by adding a room. The building department informed me that they would not issue a building permit until the existing septic tank system had been approved by the department. Because it will not be air conditioned, I do not believe that I will be required to do so. If you are planning to build an addition to your current house, you will need to have your existing septic system inspected first. This inspection technique is required in order to establish whether or not the current septic system has sufficient capacity to accommodate the extension.
This criterion is not affected by whether or not the addition has air conditioning or heating.
Applications and guidelines for a Residential Inspection of Septic System Application for an Existing Septic System Section 1: Introduction
3. Who determines if I need a mound septic system?
I own a piece of land on which I intend to build a house. According to a buddy of mine, I will most likely require a mounded septic system in order to properly dispose of waste. My lot is high and dry, and it never flooded during the recent torrential rains, thus I do not want a mound built on top of it. The Florida Administrative Code, Chapter 64E-6, requires a 24 inch separation between the wet season water table and the bottom of the drainfield during the rainy season. It is possible for water tables to change dramatically between wet and dry seasons.
As soon as the water table has been determined, a permit is drafted in accordance with state law requirements.
If sod is to be used on the slopes, a 2:1 slope is required for mounds up to 36 inches in height, and a 3:1 slope is required for mounds greater than 36 inches in height; if hay and seed is to be used on the slopes, a 5:1 slope is required regardless of the height of the mound.
Application for a New Septic System Construction Permit, as well as instructions on how to complete the application
4. What do I need to do to fix my drainfield?
My drainfield isn’t performing as expected. A septic system repair permit must be obtained before any work on your septic drainfield may be done.
5. Are assistance programs for septic system repairs available?
If you qualify, the Volusia County Community Assistance Division may have cash available to you. Contact them for more information. Please email [email protected] or call 386-736-5955 for further information. Section 1: Introduction
Septic Tank Systems
Septic tank systems are small-scale wastewater treatment systems that collect, treat, and dispose of wastewater. They are used to collect, treat, and dispose of wastewater. They are dependable, cost-effective, and efficient in their operation. Septic tank systems are used in areas where municipal sewers are not available or are impractical to install. They are also used in rural areas. Generally speaking, your septic tank system is made up of four parts: the septic tank, the effluent filter, the distribution box or Flow Divider (if applicable), and the effluent disposal field (also known as the drain field).
- It is beneficial to have an effluent filter installed in your septic tank because it allows the partially digested solid materials to remain in the tank longer.
- When you have wastewater in your distribution box, it is divided into equal halves and sent to a drain field for treatment.
- Wastewater is channeled into level trenches that are lined with gravel and pipes.
- The soil purifies the wastewater, allowing it to be recycled back into the groundwater underneath it.
Where is Your Septic Tank?
In order to keep your system in good working condition, the tank must be accessible for pumping and the drain field must be well covered. The challenge of locating your system is not always straightforward. You should contact your county health department to obtain a copy of your septic tank system permit, which will specify the approximate location of the system as well as the size and capacity of the tank. It is expected that the completed permit (also known as the Approval for Use) would include a schematic of the actual system installation as well as additional information regarding your system.
Septic Tank Maintenance offers advice on how to keep your septic tank system in good working order.
A septic system, if properly designed, constructed, and maintained, can provide long-term, effective wastewater treatment for homes and businesses that do not have access to municipal sewage treatment. In the event that a septic system is not properly maintained, it may need to be replaced, which might cost thousands of dollars. Furthermore, a failing system has the potential to pollute groundwater, which might be used as a source of drinking water. Septic system inspections are provided by the Health Department in Boone, Campbell, Grant, and Kenton Counties, among other places.
George A. Moore ([email protected]) should receive the completed forms via email. If you prefer, you may mail your completed papers to the following address: NKY HealthATTN: George Moore8001 Veterans Memorial DriveFlorence, KY41042
Steps to receive approval for a new septic system
- In this step, the person selects a building site for their residence (house, mobile home, or commercial business)
- The person, or their agent, submits an application (WordorPDF) to the Health Department for an inspection of the site. The following items must be included in the application:
- Choosing a location for a home, mobile home, or business facility
- Submitting an application (WordorPDF) to the Health Department for a site review
- Receiving a site evaluation
- And moving forward. Included in the application are some items that must be completed:
- It is necessary to pay a $300 site evaluation charge at the time the application is filed. If the findings of the site inspection indicate that there is a usable space for a potential septic system installation, the inspector will mark the location of the usable area. Construction activities such as grading, heavy equipment traffic, the placement of building materials, and other associated activities are not permitted in this region. This is done in order to avoid compaction and soil structure damage, both of which could have a negative impact on the system’s ability to function. Disturbance of the allowed area in the way stated above may result in the site evaluation being nullified. Unless specifically prohibited, normal mowing or bush hogging of the area would be permitted
- An applicant will be provided with a copy of the site evaluation report after it has been completed. There will be a list of the inspector’s soil characteristic findings in the report, as well as information on the bare minimum system choice. The certified installer is responsible for determining the specific system component requirements associated with any options selected. However, if the installer or applicant has any doubts about the information provided, they can simply call the health inspector for further information. If the site got a suitable or provisionally appropriate overall rating, the certified installer may submit an application to the Health Department for a permit to build a septic system on the property in question. At that time, all relevant papers, as well as the permission money, must be presented to the city. The site evaluation findings about site features, as well as the installer’s system design proposal, will be used to determine whether or not to grant the permit. Once the septic system has been installed, the installer must seek an inspection from the Health Department before any of the work may be reimbursed.
Please keep in mind that the actions outlined above should be completed prior to any development taking place on the site. This will allow the property owner to learn about the restrictions of the site, obtain quotes on various solutions, and ensure that the property owner complies with all applicable regulations imposed by the Health Department.
Steps to receive approval to repair or alter a septic system
- Make contact with a certified installer to discuss possible system modifications. Fill out a repair site evaluation questionnaire. (Word,PDF)
- Obtain a permit for repairs
Requesting an inspection of an existing septic system
Existing septic systems may need to be evaluated in connection with the selling of a property, the construction of an addition, or the reconstruction of a home following a natural disaster. In the event that you are selling or acquiring a house, you can request that the Health Department check the current septic system. Local building code offices mandate that an existing septic system be inspected by the Health Department prior to the issue of a building or modification permit. Please fill out the form (Word, PDF) and send it together with the appropriate cost in order to request an inspection.
The Environmental Protection Agency of the United States has published A Homeowner’s Guide to Septic Systems. Kentucky’s septic system requirements are shown here (902 KAR 10:085)
Welcome to McDonald County Health Dept.
Septic system laws were put in place in 1996. McDonald County Septic Ordinance requires that all septic systems be approved prior to installation. All repairs to existing systems must also be approved by the local health department prior to being completed. Permits can be obtained from the health department if needed. At the bottom of this page, you may find a list of certified installers that you can use.
According to the McDonald County Food Service Sanitation Ordinance, environmentalists check food establishments to ensure that they are in compliance.
Well water testing kits are available at the health department for anyone who want to do their own testing. Bacterial and mineral content tests can be performed on samples.
Lodging establishments are inspected by environmental professionals once a year in accordance with state lodging laws.
Wells & Septics
Environmental Health is responsible for reviewing and approving properties in the County for the construction of private septic systems and wells. In addition to conducting perc tests and determining the design requirements for septic systems and wells, the department provides services such as inspecting and approving private septic systems and wells, investigating illegal installations of private septic systems and wells and testing private well water, as well as reviewing and approving commercial development and subdivisions.
COVID19 and Septic Systems – What to Know
Do you know what to do to protect your well and your family if you live in a flood-prone area?
Do you know how to protect your well and your family? Individuals living near or in a low-lying location or near water in our county are particularly vulnerable to floods. For more information, including the facts and what you can do, please visit this page.
If you live in a flood-prone location, do you know what to do to safeguard your well and your family? Individuals living close or in a low-lying location or near water in our county are at risk of floods. For more information, including the facts and what you can do, please visit this website.
Septic System 101: The Fundamentals of Septic Systems Taking Good Care of Your Septic System Do-It-Yourself Video of a Septic System Inspection Using the Services of a Septic System Professional The Safety of Septic Tank Lids Symptoms of a Failing Septic System
What is a septic system?
Sewage treatment systems (septic systems) are underground wastewater treatment facilities that you own and maintain. Septic systems are common in rural regions lacking centralized sewage systems. Septic systems clean wastewater from residential plumbing, including that produced by bathrooms, kitchen drains, and laundry, using a combination of nature and time-tested technology to do so.
Why should I maintain my septic system?
Saves you money– Regular maintenance fees of a few hundred dollars every few years are a bargain when compared to the cost of repairing or replacing a malfunctioning septic system, which can run into the thousands of dollars if not done properly. Maintains the health of you and your neighbors– Disease-causing bacteria and viruses, as well as high levels of nitrogen and phosphorus, can be found in large quantities in household wastewater. A properly functioning septic system aids in the removal of these pollutants, thereby preventing the contamination of well water and nearby surface water.
Septic systems that are not operating properly unleash germs, viruses, and chemicals into the environment, which eventually end up in streams, rivers, lakes, Puget Sound, and the ocean.
Protects Your Property Value– A septic system that is inoperable or in disrepair will depreciate the value of your home and may expose you to a potentially costly legal liability.
A septic system inspection can be performed by your local health agency, which can also provide a list of certified septic pumpers and, if available, certify you to perform your own septic system inspection. SepticSmart– The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides information on appropriate septic care, as well as pamphlets and factsheets for homeowners. Clean Water Loans from Craft3- Craft3 provides funding for the replacement of septic systems in a number of locations around Washington.
Onsite Sewage Systems Program
Welcome to the Onsite Sewage Disposal Program of the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), which may be found on this website. Onsite sewage disposal systems (also known as septic systems) are those that do not result in the discharge of treated effluent off-site. They are typically comprised of a septic tank to settle out and digest sewage solids, followed by a system of perforated piping to distribute the treated wastewater for absorption into the soil, and a septic tank to settle out and digest sewage solids.
- More than 15,000 licenses for new systems are issued annually by local health agencies, while around 6,000 permits are issued annually for repairs.
- A team of professionals from the program examines soil surveys for on-site sewage disposal systems, as well as plans and specifications for water supply and sewage disposal systems to service all sorts of public and commercial buildings.
- Mobile home parks, organizational campsites, and recreational campgrounds are all examples of this type of facility.
- Apartments, subdivisions, mobile home parks, churches, factories, petrol stations, grocery shops, convenience stores, post offices, restaurants, taverns, golf course clubhouses, campsites, and veterinary, dental, and medical offices are all examples of commercial facilities.
- To find out how the soil report and plan reviews are progressing, click on the following link:Plan Review Project Status Link.
- All types of camps are needed to submit an application; however, only Recreational Vehicle and Youth camps are required to have designs produced by a professional engineer or architect in order to operate.
- If an onsite sewage system is required, the designs for the onsite system must be developed by a qualified engineer or architect, and the drawings must be submitted with a full application and fee.
- In the case of a sanitary sewer that is within a reasonable distance of the proposed facility, the installation of an on-site sewage disposal system is prohibited, and a connection to the sewer must be made instead of the sewer.
IDEM is also responsible for sewage treatment facilities that flow into a stream or other surface water body, among other things. Please see the following link for an overview of the plan review procedure and requirements.
Announcements / Current News
IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON THOSE IN THE WATER AND WASTEWATER INDUSTRIES: Is it possible to obtain COVID-19 from sewage or waste water?
Soil Scientists who are licensed in the state of Indiana Exterior water and sewer piping that has been pre-approvedApproved manufactured septic tanks Septic Tank Outlet Filters that have been pre-approved Materials that have been pre-approved for use in onsite sewage systems
For the purpose of obtaining a permit for the construction or alteration of a commercial onsite sewage disposal system, A commercial onsite sewage system that is ready for use or that can be filled in the field. In this Word 97 document, you will find the following: Soil Evaluation for Onsite Sewage Systems.
Laws and Regulations
6-8.3 Residential Onsite Sewage Systems (410 IAC 6-8.3) In accordance with IAC 6-10.1, commercial on-site wastewater disposal is permitted. Plan review, construction permits, and fees for services are all covered under IAC 6-12 (410 IAC 6-12 Plan Review, Construction Permits, and Fees for Services). Bulletins and Rules from the Past
The Environmental Protection Agency’s SepticSmart initiative is a national public education campaign that aims to educate homeowners who live on properties served by septic systems about the importance of properly maintaining their septic system and to provide valuable resources to assist homeowners in making important decisions about their wastewater management needs. Septic System Upkeep and Repair Videos and information to help you out in a hurry
Program Information and Policies
Removal of an Onsite Sewage System or Abandonment of an Onsite Sewage System (PDF) Sanitary Vault Privy Information Bulletin S.E. 11 There is a planning guide that includes the very minimum standards for the building of vault toilets. Updated Version of Bulletin S.E. 11- The Sanitary Vault Privy – New for 2021 Eventually, the new 2021 version will take the place of the previous 1986 version. As a best practice guideline, this new bulletin will be utilized until it is formally integrated into Rules 410 IAC6-8.3 and 410 IAC6-10.1, which will be implemented by reference into a county ordinance until it is accepted by reference.
- The Construction of Constructed Wetlands (Constructed Wetlands Standards) In addition, these standards apply to the design and construction of subsurface constructed wetland treatment technology for on-site wastewater systems with a design daily flow of no more than 750 gallons per day.
- Detailed procedures for the design of elevated sand mound systems for one- and two-family dwellings are outlined in this document in addition to general information.
- Section 60 of this document discusses the use of this technology (h).
- IU hosts the Indiana Registry of Soil Scientists-State Chemist website, which is maintained by the Indiana Department of Agriculture.
- There is also a list of registered soil scientists and a map of the counties in which each of them is willing to work on this website.
- Standards for Chamber Trench Soil Absorption Field Technology in the State of Indiana These standards apply to chamber trench soil absorption field (SAF) technology for manufacturers who have demonstrated that their products meet or exceed Indiana performance criteria in a laboratory setting.
- At the conclusion of this paper, you can find a list of Indiana-approved manufacturers and chamber trench SAF items that you may purchase.
- Subsurface drainage systems, which are frequently used in conjunction with surface diversions, are used to provide the necessary drainage to prepare a site for the installation of an onsite sewage treatment system.
- Subsurface Drip Systems in Indiana Must Meet Specifications These specifications apply to drip integrated systems that are installed below the surface of the ground (IS).
Standards for Type II Elevated Sand Mound Systems in the State of Indiana Rules 410 IAC 6-8.3 and 6-10.1 of the Indiana State Department of Health (department) specify the standards for site appropriateness and design requirements for raised sand mound systems in the state of Indiana, respectively.
OSS Installation Training Presentations by the IOWPA for Residential Customers Individual Residential On-Site Sewage Systems Using TNI Technology: Protocol for Delegation to Local Health Departments of the Review and Permit Issuance for Individual Residential On-Site Sewage Systems The Indiana State Department of Health has the authority to permit the use of on-site sewage system technologies or components that are not specifically covered by the state’s onsite sewage system standards, such as septic tanks.
- Technology that is new to Indiana is the category in which these systems fall.
- For some TNI systems, the department has delegated broad authority for plan approval and permit issuance, but not for all of these systems.
- In accordance with the provisions of this standard, authority over those systems will be delegated.
- Specifications and clearances for sanitary sewers and lift stations Filters for Septic Tank Outlets Making your onsite sewage system last as long as possible.
- sewage holding tanks (also known as -PDF) Only temporary holding tanks can be approved, and they can only be used for a maximum of two years before they must be decommissioned.
- This document gives guidelines on how to evaluate soil profiles for the purpose of selecting an onsite system.
- Its purpose is to draw attention to the influence of the characteristics of a BC or CB horizon on the performance of an onsite system.
Listed on this page is the current status of soil survey submittals as well as designs for commercial sewage disposal projects that have been submitted to the City for consideration.
Indiana is a first-time adopter of new technology.
Tire chips and onsite sewage systems are two examples of waste management.
Backwash water softeners and on-site sewage systems are available in Indiana.
The goal of this paper is to give guidelines to local health agencies, onsite sewage system designers, and installers on the discharge of water softener backwash from a dwelling that is equipped with an onsite sewage system (also known as a graywater system).
Guidelines for Using a Xerolet Toilet In this article, we will present information on how to utilize the Xerolet Eco-System in one and two family residences, with the goal of reducing energy consumption.
Locating Existing Septic Systems
Currently, the Porter County Health Department is in the process of digitizing septic system records, with the goal of providing internet access to these information by 2018.
Determine the Year Your Septic Was Installed
- Prior to 1974, the Porter County Health Department did not have any septic permit data on file. As a result, residences constructed before to 1974 will not have any documentation on file.
- Porter County Health Department will want the following information in order to locate a sketch of your septic system on your property:
- The address of the property
- The name of the subdivision and the lot number, if applicable
- The name of the property owner at the time the septic system was built, or the name of the permit application
- PCHDwill require the following information in order to locate a drawing of your septic system:
Locating Your Septic System Without a Drawing
Discover where your main sewer line exits your home; this will give you a good idea of where your tank could be hidden beneath your home. A typical tank is about ten feet away from the house and measures five by eight feet across. The lateral lines are typically constructed down slope from the septic tank unless the laterals are particularly deep or unless there is a dosing chamber to pump the effluent upslope. When running from one edge of the trench to the other, the lateral lines are typically 3 feet broad and 4–5 feet apart on average.
In addition to purchasing a probe, any long solid rod may be used as a probe, which can be found at any hardware shop.
It is advised that, once a septic tank has been discovered, a riser be constructed above the access ports of the tank to provide for simple access to the tank in the event that it has to be pumped later on.
How Close Can My Septic System Be to a Pool, Pole Barn, Garage, Etc.?
Septic systems must be located at least 10 feet away from any structure, including pools, patios, and fences, among other things. Decks must be erected at least 10 feet away from lateral lines and cannot be built over a septic tank.
How Do I Get a Septic Location Report for a Building Permit?
Provide a drawing to the Porter County Health Department that depicts the location of your house, septic system, and any structures you intend to erect on the property, among other things. The drawing must either be drawn to scale or show the distance between the structure you intend to build on your property and the septic system, whichever is the greater. If the Porter County Health Department already has a drawing of your septic system, they will gladly provide you with a copy of it at no additional cost.
How Can I Find out Who Originally Owned My Property?
The Assessor’s Office may provide you with information on who owned your property at the time of purchase.
How Often Should I Get My Septic Tank Pumped?
A septic tank should be pumped once every three to five years, on average. The greater the number of people that live in your home, the more frequently your septic tank should be drained. Pumping your septic tank on a regular basis prevents solids from accumulating in your septic tank, which can lead to clogging of your lateral lines and the failure of your septic tank system. It is recommended by the Porter County Health Department that a riser be installed over the tank’s access ports in order to provide easy access for pumping the septic tank at a later date.
Wells and Septic Systems
The EH Safe Drinking Water Program ensures that water wells are constructed in a safe and proper manner. Private residences receive a thorough inspection and testing to guarantee that their water is bacteria-free and low in nitrate.
Conforming to IPDH standards, non-community public water supplies (such as churches, schools, and even food establishments) that rely on private wells are sampled once every 12 months and surveyed twice every 12 months. More information on NCPWS may be found on the IPDH’s website.
Environmental Health Private Sewage Program
This program ensures that wastewater treatment systems are installed properly and in accordance with all applicable codes and permits issued by the City of Chicago. The Environmental Health Department completed 2,010 water program activities, 1,166 sewage program activities, and 138 septic permit transactions in fiscal year 2018. There are many various sorts of systems that may be implemented, and the types of systems available are continually evolving as new technology is introduced. Please see the IPDH website for additional information and to find a contractor to work with.
EPA National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)
In order to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES), the WCHD EH lab gathers routine samples from discharging septic systems and induvial mechanical systems as part of its routine sampling program. More information may be obtained on the Environmental Protection Agency’s website.
How To Find My Septic Tank
- What is a septic tank
- How do I know if I have a septic tank
- And how do I know if I have a septic tank Identifying the location of your septic tank is critical for several reasons. The Best Way to Find a Septic Tank
- What to Do Once You’ve Discovered Your Septic Tank
You may have fallen in love with your new house because of its appealing good looks and characteristics, but there is almost certainly more to your new home than meets the eye. In many cases, the characteristics that make your house run more effectively and allow you to live a pleasant, contemporary life are not readily apparent. Septic tanks, for example, are an important part of your home’s infrastructure. A septic system is responsible for regulating and managing the wastewater generated by your home.
- “How can I locate my septic tank?” is one of the most often requested inquiries we receive.
- When your tank’s lid is difficult to locate – especially if you are not the original homeowner – you may be at a loss for what to do or where to look for the lid when you need it.
- The majority of the time, all of the components of the septic tank are buried between four inches and four feet below ground level.
- In order to do so, it is necessary to first comprehend the functions of septic tanks and septic systems and why it is important to know where yours is located.
How to Locate Your Septic Tank
Your septic tank’s location is not a closely guarded secret. There will be a method for you to locate it and make a note of its location for future reference, and here are a few examples of such methods.
What Is a Septic Tank?
Having a functioning septic tank is an important aspect of having an effective septic system. In the United States, around 20% of households utilize a septic system to handle their wastewater. Houses in rural parts of New England are the most likely to have a septic system, with residences in the Eastern United States being the most prevalent location for septic systems. When there are few and far between residences, it is typically more efficient and cost-effective to employ a septic system to manage wastewater rather than relying on a public sewage system to handle waste water.
Typically, a septic tank is a container that is waterproof and composed of a material such as concrete, polyethylene, fiberglass, or a combination of these.
An important function of a septic tank is to hold on to wastewater until any particulates in the water separate themselves from the water.
Any liquid that remains in the tank eventually drains into a leach field or a drainfield, where it is known as “effluent.” The dirt in the leach field aids in the filtering of the water and the removal of bacteria, viruses, and other pollutants that may be present in it.
Septic tanks installed in Onondaga County must have inlet and outlet baffles, as well as an effluent filter or sanitary tees, in order to effectively separate solids from liquids during the treatment process.
How Do I Know If I Have a Septic Tank?
What is the best way to tell if your home has a septic tank? There are generally a few of different methods to tell. Examining your water bill might help you identify whether or not your house is served by a septic system or is part of the public sewage system in your neighborhood. If you have a septic system for wastewater management, you are likely to receive a charge from the utility provider for wastewater or sewer services of zero dollars. In the case of those who are fortunate enough to have a septic system, it is possible that they will not receive any water bills at all.
- A lack of a meter on the water line that enters your home is typically indicative of the fact that you are using well water rather than public utility water, according to the National Association of Realtors.
- A septic system is likely to be installed in your home if you reside in a rather rural location.
- Septic systems are likely to be installed in all of these buildings, which means your home is likely to be as well.
- When a septic tank is present, it is common to find a mound or tiny hill on the property that is not a natural structure.
- Checking your property records is a foolproof method of determining whether or not your home is equipped with a septic system.
Why It’s Important to Know the Location of Your Septic Tank
You might wonder why you should bother trying to discover out where your septic tank is. There are several important reasons for this:
1. To Be Able to Care for It Properly
The first reason you should try to locate your septic tank is that knowing where it is will allow you to properly maintain and care for it in the future. The standard guideline is to avoid erecting structures or placing heavy objects on top of the septic tank. It’s possible that you don’t want to park your car or truck on top of it, and you don’t want visitors to your house to park their cars on top of it, either. Due to the weight of the cars, there is a possibility that the tank will collapse due to excessive pressure.
2. If You Want to Landscape or Remodel Your Property
If you want to build an addition to your home or perform some landscaping around your property, you will need to know where your septic tank is located. Nothing with deep or lengthy roots should be planted on top of or in the area of your tank, since this can cause problems. If roots are allowed to grow into the pipes of your septic system, it is conceivable that your system will get clogged. When you know where the tank is going to be, you may arrange your landscaping such that only shallow-rooted plants, such as grass, are in close proximity to the tank.
For starters, the tank’s weight could cause it to collapse due to the weight of the structure. A second issue is that getting access to the tank becomes more difficult if a permanent structure has been constructed on top of it.
3. If a Problem With Your Tank Occurs
Knowing where your tank is buried might also assist you in identifying problems as soon as they arise. Consider the following scenario: you wake up one morning and notice that there is flooding or ponding water in the area around your septic tank — a sign that your system is overloaded and that an excessive amount of water is being used all at once.
4. Ease of Getting It Fixed
Once you have determined the location of your sewer system, you can quickly send a plumber to it in the event that something goes wrong with the system, saving everyone both time and money. Get in Touch With A Plumber Right Away
1. Use a Septic Tank Map
First and foremost, make use of a road map. Using a map is frequently the quickest and most convenient alternative. Most counties keep records of the installation of septic tanks at all of their residents’ residences. These maps should include schematics that illustrate the specific placement of the tank on the land, as well as measurements that allow you to measure and locate the tank’s exact location on the property. Never mind that landmarks may shift over time depending on when the tank was built, so if there are a few more shrubs or a tree nearby, don’t rule out that location as a possibility.
- If you are unable to locate a map or other paperwork that identifies the location of your septic tank, there are a few locations to try to see if you can obtain a map of the area.
- The county health department is responsible for keeping track of septic systems.
- A septic tank’s position could be depicted on a survey map, for example.
- The creation of your own map and documentation may be worthwhile if you cannot locate a map or blueprint of your property and nothing appears to be on file regarding it at the county health department or another municipal agency.
2. Follow the Pipes to Find Your Septic Tank
Whether or not there is an existing map of your septic tank on file, or whether or not you choose to develop one for future reference or for future homeowners, you will still need to track down and find the tank. One method of accomplishing this is to follow the sewer lines that lead away from your residence. The septic tank is situated along the sewage line that goes from your home and into the yard, as we’re sure you’re aware. Find a four-inch sewer pipe in your basement or crawl space. This is the line that will lead to your septic system and should be accessible from the ground level.
- In general, though, you’re searching for a pipe with a diameter of four inches or more that leaves your home via a basement wall or ceiling.
- By inserting a thin metal probe (also known as a soil probe) into the earth near the sewage line, you can track the pipe’s location.
- The majority of septic tanks are located between 10 and 25 feet away from your home, and they cannot be any closer than five feet.
- Going through the sewer pipe itself is another method of locating the septic tank using it.
- Drain snakes are typically used to unclog clogs in toilets and drains, and they may be used to do the same thing.
- When the snake comes to a complete halt, it has almost certainly reached the tank.
- While drawing the snake back, make a note of how far it has been extended and whether it has made any bends or turns.
- When looking for your septic tank, you may use a transmitter that you flush down the toilet and it will direct you straight to the tank.
If you only want to keep an eye on the condition of your tank and don’t need to dig it up and inspect it, you may thread a pipe camera into the sewer pipe to see what’s happening.
3. Inspect Your Yard
Septic tanks are designed to be as unobtrusive as possible when they are erected. With the passage of time, and the growth of the grass, it can be difficult to discern the visual clues that indicated the exact location of your septic tank’s installation. However, this does not rule out the possibility of finding evidence that will take you to the location of your septic tank in the future. First and foremost, you want to rule out any potential locations for your septic tank, such as:
- Under a road or similar paved surface, for example. Right up against the house (the tank must be at least five feet away)
- Directly in front of the home Immediately adjacent to your well (if you have one)
- In close proximity to trees or densely planted regions
- In the shadow of a patio, deck, or other building
Once you’ve ruled out any potential locations for your tank, it’s time to start hunting for indications as to where it may be hiding in plain sight. Keep your eyes peeled as you go about your property, looking for any inexplicable high or low points that might suggest the presence of an underground tank. When looking at your property, you might notice a hill or mound on the ground, which is often an indication that there is a septic tank nearby. One further item to consider while searching for the right septic tank for your home is the amount of grass or other foliage in your yard.
Alternatively, if the tank was not properly buried, you may notice a “bald patch,” which is an area where the grass is struggling to grow in the vicinity.
4. Talk to Your Neighbors
If your neighbors have septic systems as well, they may be able to assist you in locating your tank. Inquire of your neighbors about the location of their septic tanks in relation to their residences. Having a polite conversation with your neighbors regarding septic systems not only provides you with a means to figure out where yours is, but it may also serve as a friendly introduction to the other residents of your community.
5. Look for Your Septic Tank Lid
It is only the first step in the process to discover where your septic tank is located. After you’ve located your tank, the next step is to locate the lid. You can locate it with the help of your soil probe. The majority of septic tanks are rectangular in shape and measure around five feet by eight feet. The perimeter of the tank should be marked with a probe once it has been probed around. A shallow excavation with a shovel within the tank’s perimeter and near the center (or broken into halves for a two compartment tank) should show the position of the lid or lids if you are unable to feel them by probing.
The tank itself is likely to be filled with foul-smelling vapors, if not potentially hazardous ones.
What to Do After You Find Your Septic Tank
Once you’ve determined where your tank is, it’s time to call in the professionals. Trust us when we say that opening a septic tank is not something that just anyone wants to undertake. Concrete septic tank lids are extremely heavy and must be lifted using special lifting gear in order to be removed. Since the vapors are potentially dangerous due to the contents of the tank, please respect our advice and refrain from attempting to open the tank yourself. An open septic tank can be hazardous to anyone walking along your property’s perimeter, and if someone were to fall into it, it could be fatal due to the toxicity of the sewage in the tank.
However, before you send in a team of experienced plumbers, there are a few things you can do to ensure that others do not experience the same difficulty locating the tank and to make locating the tank in the future easier.
1. Mark Its Location
The likelihood is that you will not want to post a large sign in your yard that reads “Septic Tank Here!” but you will want to leave some sort of marking so that you can quickly locate the tank and lid when you need them. In an ideal situation, the marker will be substantial enough that it will not blow away in the wind and will not be readily moved by children who are playing in the yard. A patio paver, a potted plant, or a decorative gnome or rock are just a few of the possibilities. In addition to putting a physical marker by the septic tank, you can draw a map or diagram of the area around it to show its location.
2. Take Care of Your Septic Tank
Taking good care of your tank can save you thousands of dollars over the course of its lifetime. The expense of maintaining your system could be a few hundred dollars every few years, but that’s a lot less than the thousands of dollars it might cost to repair or replace a damaged tank or a malfunctioning septic system. Two strategies to take better care of your septic tank and system are to avoid utilizing your drain pipes or toilets as garbage cans and to use less water overall. Things like paper towels, facial tissues, and cat litter should not be flushed down the toilet because they are not meant to be flushed.
In addition, installing low-flow faucets and high-efficiency toilets can help you reduce the amount of water used in your home.
For example, you don’t want to be washing load after load of laundry or running your clothes washer at the same time as your dishwasher all at the same time.
Call a Professional Plumber
Maintenance of a septic system is not normally considered a do-it-yourself activity. In the Greater Syracuse region, whether your septic tank requires pumping out or cleaning, or if you want to replace your tank, you should use the services of a reputable plumbing firm to do the job right. If you’ve attempted to locate your septic tank on your own and are still unsure of its location, it may be necessary to enlist the assistance of a professional local plumber. Our team at Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Greater Syracuse can assist you with locating, maintaining, or replacing your home’s sewage tank.
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Septic systems that are in good working order are beneficial to your family, your budget, and the environment. You can safeguard your septic system and save money on costly repairs by following a few easy procedures. Your groundwater, as well as the lakes, rivers, and beaches of Puget Sound, will benefit as well!
What is a septic system?
Consider them to be similar in size to a sewage treatment facility, but considerably smaller. They collect, store, treat, and dispose of the items that you flush or pour down the toilet. Various types of systems are available to choose from.
Some are straightforward, requiring merely a tank and a drainage area. Others are more complicated, necessitating the use of pumps, filters, or materials that have been particularly created. For more information, please see our 3D septic system models.
A maintained septic system keeps you and the environment healthy and helps:
- Reduce the likelihood of individuals becoming ill as a result of untreated sewage
- Reduce the likelihood of groundwater and surface water becoming contaminated
- You will save money and your system’s life will be extended.
Our role is to:
- Consult with septic system specialists to approve the design, placement, and installation of the system
- Property owners should be educated on the importance of keeping their septic systems in good working order.
What are the regulations?
- Environmental Health Code, Chapter 1, General Provisions
- Environmental Health Code, Chapter 2, On-Site Sewage
- Environmental Health Code, Chapter 3, Water Regulation
- Appeals Process for Orders and Decisions of the Health Officer
- Environmental Health Code, Chapter 1, General Provisions
- The Septic Systems 101 webinar is available online
- Designers and Engineers —A list of designers and engineers who are certified to work in Pierce County is available online
- Septic Systems 101 webinar is available online
- Installation Companies —A list of companies that have been certified to work in Pierce County
- Fee Schedule — Fee Schedule for On-Site Sewage, Wells, and Water Resources Services
- Complaints can be lodged against a Pierce County Septic Service Company or a person. A list of companies that have been certified to work in Pierce County’s septic system service industry.
Have questions? We have answers!
For more information, please contact us at [email protected] or (253) 649-1925.