How to find septic tank field lines?
- To find the septic tank field lines start the search from your home. Keep tracing the drain lines towards the septic tank. The septic tank will be installed at least 10-20 feet from the exterior. Since the tank is located just to the opposite side of the house, drain lines go to the leach field.
How does an old style septic tank work?
Septic tanks work by allowing waste to separate into three layers: solids, effluent and scum (see illustration above). The solids settle to the bottom, where microorganisms decompose them. The scum, composed of waste that’s lighter than water, floats on top.
How do septic tank field lines work?
The lines or pipes in the septic leach field have small holes along their sides and bottom. As the wastewater flows through the pipes, it leaches into the gravel, sand, or soil surrounding them. The bacteria in the leach field septic layer then digest the organic materials, purifying the wastewater.
When did septic tank regulations change?
According to new regulations passed in 2015, if your septic tank discharges to surface water such as a ditch, stream, canal or river, you will have to upgrade your system to a sewage treatment plant or install a soakaway system by 1 January 2020.
How were old septic tanks built?
Many of the first septic tanks were concrete tanks that were formed out of wood and poured in place in the ground and covered with a concrete lid or often some type of lumber. In the 1960s, precast concrete tanks became more prevalent as the standard of practice improved.
What were old septic tanks called?
This treatment chamber became known as the septic tank. Note that the septic tank has a baffle at each end to help keep waste in the tank. The original pit remained as the part of the system that returned “clarified” wastewater to the ground. It now became known as a drywell.
How long are septic lateral lines?
A typical drainfield trench is 18 to 30 inches in depth, with a maximum soil cover over the disposal field of 36 inches.
What are the signs that your septic tank is full?
Here are some of the most common warning signs that you have a full septic tank:
- Your Drains Are Taking Forever.
- Standing Water Over Your Septic Tank.
- Bad Smells Coming From Your Yard.
- You Hear Gurgling Water.
- You Have A Sewage Backup.
- How often should you empty your septic tank?
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 do I find my septic tank outlet pipe?
The outlet pipe should be approximately 3 inches below the inlet pipe. Inlet Baffle: The inlet baffle is installed on the inlet pipe inside the tank.
What is the slope for septic lines?
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.
How deep is the sewer line in my yard?
How Deep Is a Sewer Line? Sewer lines on private property can be as shallow as 18–30 inches deep or as much as 5–6 feet deep. In areas with cold climates, the pipe will be buried deeper to prevent freezing in the winter.
Does heavy rain affect septic tank?
It is common to have a septic back up after or even during a heavy rain. Significant rainfall can quickly flood the ground around the soil absorption area (drainfield) leaving it saturated, making it impossible for water to flow out of your septic system.
Are septic tanks still legal?
Septic Tanks Explained… Septic tanks cannot discharge to surface water drains, rivers, canals, ditches, streams or any other type of waterway. 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.
Is my septic tank illegal?
No, septic tanks aren’t going to be banned. Septic tanks do a good job of holding back solids and separating solids from liquid, they also offer a small degree of biological cleaning, however the waste that is discharged from them is still very high in ammonia and requires treatment before entering the environment.
How Your Septic System Works
Underground wastewater treatment facilities, known as septic systems, are often employed in rural regions where there are no centralized sewage lines. They clean wastewater from residential plumbing, such as that produced by bathrooms, kitchen drains, and laundry, by combining natural processes with well-established technology. A conventional septic system is comprised of two components: a septic tank and a drainfield, often known as a soil absorption field. It is the septic tank’s job to decompose organic matter and to remove floatable stuff (such as oils and grease) and solids from wastewater.
Alternate treatment systems rely on pumps or gravity to assist septic tank effluent in trickling through a variety of media such as sand, organic matter (e.g., peat and sawdust), constructed wetlands, or other media to remove or neutralize pollutants such as pathogens that cause disease, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other contaminants.
Specifically, this is how a typical conventional septic system works:
- All of the water that leaves your home drains down a single main drainage pipe and into a septic tank. An underground, water-tight container, often composed of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene, serves as a septic system’s holding tank. Its function is to retain wastewater for a long enough period of time to allow particles to sink to the bottom and form sludge, while oil and grease float to the surface and produce scum. Sludge and scum are prevented from exiting the tank and moving into the drainfield region by compartments and a T-shaped outlet. After that, the liquid wastewater (effluent) exits the tank and flows into the drainfield. The drainfield is a shallow, covered hole dug in unsaturated soil that serves as a drainage system. Porous surfaces are used to release pretreated wastewater because they allow the wastewater to pass through the soil and into the groundwater. In the process of percolating through the soil, wastewater is accepted, treated, and dispersed by the soil, finally discharging into groundwater. Finally, if the drainfield becomes overburdened with too much liquid, it can flood, causing sewage to flow to the ground surface or resulting in toilet backups and sink backups. Finally, wastewater percolates into the soil, where it is naturally removed of harmful coliform bacteria, viruses, and nutrients. Coliform bacteria are a kind of bacteria that may be found in the intestines of humans and other warm-blooded animals, with humans being the most common host. As a result of human fecal contamination, it is a sign of this.
A septic tank is where all of the water drains from your home through a single main drainage line. An underground, watertight container, often built of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene, serves as a septic system’s holding tank. Its role is to retain wastewater for a long enough period of time to allow particles to settle to the bottom and form sludge, while oil and grease float to the surface and produce scum. It is also known as a settling tank. T-shaped outlets and compartments prevent sludge and scum from exiting the tank and migrating into the drainfield region.
- An excavation built in unsaturated soil, the drainfield is shallow and covered.
- As wastewater percolates through the soil and eventually discharges into groundwater, the soil takes, processes, and disperses it.
- Finally, wastewater percolates into the soil, where it is naturally removed of harmful coliform bacteria, viruses, and nutrients.
- As a result of human fecal contamination, it is a sign of contamination.
Do you have a septic system?
It’s possible that you’re already aware that you have a septic system. If you are not sure, here are some tell-tale symptoms that you most likely are:
- You make use of well water. In your home, the water pipe that brings water into the house does not have a meter. In the case of a water bill or a property tax bill, you will see “$0.00 Sewer Amount Charged.” It is possible that your neighbors have a septic system
How to find your septic system
You can locate your septic system once you have confirmed that you have one by following these steps:
- The following are some methods for determining whether or not your home has a septic system.
Failure symptoms: Mind the signs!
A bad odor is not necessarily the first indicator of a septic system that is failing to work properly. Any of the following signs should prompt you to seek expert assistance:
- Water backing up into the drains of homes and businesses
- It is especially noticeable in dry weather that the drainfield grass is bright green and spongy. The presence of standing water or muddy soil near your septic system or in your basement
- A strong stench emanating from the area surrounding the septic tank and drainfield
Septic System Life Expectancy Guide for Septic Systems, Septic Tanks, Septic Drainfields and other septic components
- ASK a question or make a comment regarding the normal life expectancy of septic system components in the comments section.
InspectAPedia does not allow any form of conflict of interest. The sponsors, goods, and services described on this website are not affiliated with us in any way. The life expectancy of a septic system is: This page explains the normal life expectancy of septic systems as well as the various components that make up a septic system. The life expectancy of a septic tank is mostly determined by the materials used in its construction, but the life expectancy of septic system pipe is largely determined by the likelihood of damage by vehicle traffic, root blockage, or flooding by groundwater.
For this topic, we also have anARTICLE INDEX available, or you may check the top or bottom of the page.
Septic System Component Life Expectancy
When a homeowner understands the right techniques for septic tank care, such as the frequency of septic tank cleaning and other septic tank maintenance duties, he or she will be better able to extend the life of their onsite septic system and ensure that it is operating effectively.
How Quickly Does A Septic System Fail? How long will a septic tank, D-box, or absorption bed last?
Keep in mind that the most essential thing a homeowner can do to extend the life of a private (onsite) septic system is to pump the septic tank on a regular basis based on the number of building occupants, the size of the tank, and the amount of wastewater produced. See TANK PUMPING SCHEDULE for further information.
- Septic Tank Pumping Frequency: Assuming you have a working and reasonably-designed septic system to begin with, the most major action you can take to extend the life of your septic system is to have the septic tank cleaned or “pumped” on a regular basis. See TANK PUMPING SCHEDULE for further information. the name of a table that calculates how frequently a certain septic tank need this treatment
- It is important to understand how the septic system is used, including the amount of wastewater produced and the kind of things that are flushed down the septic system drains. Reducing the amount of water used lessens the stress on the absorption field. By avoiding the use of chemicals or materials that do not biodegrade, the pace of solid build-up in the septic tank can be reduced. Please see the section “DON’T FLUSH INTO THE TOILETthese items into a septic system” for a list of what is and is not acceptable to flush down toilets or down building drains
- Soil conditions such as soil percolation rate, ground water or surface water levels, and the volume and level of ground water or surface water that have an impact on the soil absorption area or drain field The materials used in septic tanks corrode over time, first losing their baffles (which causes drain field obstruction) and then rusting at the bottom or sides of the tank. The pace at which rust develops is determined by the soil conditions, soil acidity, and other variables. When properly installed and maintained, an unlined concrete septic tank may last for over 40 years, excluding instances of improperly mixed concrete or acidic soils, both of which might shorten the tank’s life expectancy. Unless they are mechanically damaged, plastic or fiberglass septic tanks may be expected to survive for a similar amount of time. In many cases, the lifespan of Special Components (such as effluent pumps or septic grinder pumps) along with the lifespan of septic filters, media, and sand bed filter systems dictates the requirement for maintenance of alternate-design septic systems that make use of these components. Trees or plants in the vicinity whose roots have infiltrated system components
- Septic soakaway beds located in wet soils, near high water tables, near creeks and streams that are susceptible to flooding all have a short life expectancy and may be improperly or illegally installed
- Surface and roof runoff directed into drainfields
- And roof or surface runoff directed into drainfields The following is the water use in the building: The amount of water used in a building has an impact on the drainfield, as do exceptional or abnormal amounts of water consumption, such as toilets that are always running. See When a toilet runs continuously or a water softener is stuck in the “backwash” cycle, it can overwhelm a septic drainfield, causing it to break and contaminating the surrounding area. Similarly, a water softener that is trapped in the regeneration cycle and continues to run can cause flooding in septic fields, and a water conditioner that is incorrectly calibrated can introduce an excessive amount of salt into the water can cause damage to the drainfield. For more information on how water softeners function, see HOW SOFTTENERS WORK. Advice on how to set the water softener timing and salt dose may be found atWATER SOFTENER ADJUSTMENTCONTROLS.
How Quickly Will the Septic System Fail if We Have One or More of the Problems Listed Above?
Septic Tank Pumping Frequency: Assuming you have a working and reasonably-designed septic system to begin with, the most important action you can do to extend the life of your septic system is to have the septic tank cleaned or “pumped” on a regular basis. A schedule for tank pumping may be found here. while looking for a chart that determines how frequently a specific septic tank need this treatment; It is important to understand how the septic system is used, including the amount of wastewater produced and the kind of things that are flushed down the septic system drainage system.
Reduce the pace of solid buildup in the septic tank by refraining from flushing chemicals or substances that do not biodegrade.
soil conditions such as soil percolation rate, ground water or surface water levels, and the volume and level of ground water or surface water that impact the soil absorption area or drain field The materials used in septic tanks corrode over time, first losing their baffles (which causes drain field obstruction) and then rusting at the bottom or sides of the tank over time.
When properly installed and maintained, an unlined concrete septic tank can last for over 40 years, excluding instances of improperly mixed concrete or acidic soils, both of which can shorten the tank’s life expectancy considerably.
In many cases, the lifespan of Special Components (such as effluent pumps or septic grinder pumps) along with the lifespan of septic filters, media, and sand bed filter systems dictates the requirement for maintenance of alternate-design septic systems that make use of these components Trees or plants in the vicinity whose roots have infiltrated components of the system Septic soakaway beds located in moist soils, near high water tables, near creeks and streams that are susceptible to floods all have a limited life expectancy and may be improperly or illegally installed; surface and roof runoff directed into drainfields; and roof runoff directed into drainfields The building’s water consumption is as follows: A building’s water use has an impact on the drainfield, as do odd or irregular water consumption patterns, such as toilets that are always running.
See A septic drainfield can get saturated if a toilet is used continuously or if a water softener is left in the “backwash” cycle.
For further information on how water softeners function, please see HOW SOFTENERS WORK (in English). Advice on how to adjust the water softener timing and salt dose may be found atWATER SOFTENER ADJUSTMENTCONTROLS;
How Long do Individual Septic System Components like Tanks, Piping, D-Boxes, Filters or Pumps Last?
A steel septic tank will rust out on a timeline that is determined by the acidity of the soil, the grade of the tank steel, and the integrity of the coating. An older steel septic tank, such as one that is 15 or 20 years old, is likely to have corroded to the point of losing its baffles and maybe having a rusted out bottom, which are issues that can be identified during septic tank cleaning and inspection. A steel septic tank cover will survive until it is either driven over by an idiot or rusted away.
- A traditional septic drain field has a variable life span that is determined by the soil percolation rate, the drainfield size, and the degree of usage.
- I’ve witnessed a traditional septic drainfield collapse within 24 hours of being used for the first time on a new system due to improper pipe installation.
- If you ask your neighbors who have comparable soils and systems, they may be able to provide valuable insight.
- A septic tank is simply one component of a complete on-site wastewater treatment system.
- Preserving the septic tank, on the other hand, will help to extend the life of the absorption system, leach field, or drainfield, which is the more expensive second part of the onsite wastewater treatment system.
What to Do ifyou have just moved into a home with a septic system
If you’ve recently purchased a property that has a septic tank, you may not be aware of the size of the tank, its maintenance history, or even the location of the septic tank in question. As a result, you should have your tank emptied out and checked for damage. The business that is pumping the tank will be able to tell you the size, age, and condition of the tank.
Reader CommentsQ A
Pete Providing your excavator digs enough space around the concrete septic tank and the tank is not damaged, it should be feasible to lift and transport the tank without difficulty. I need to relocate a 1000-gallon septic tank because of construction. My main concern is the tank’s structural stability given its age. It’s 40 years old and appears to be in fine shape; the baffles have exhibited just little degradation. Without pumping, I can’t see the edges or the bottom of the tank. If the baffles appear to be in excellent condition, I suppose that would imply a tank that is sufficiently sound to transport.
Additionally, the baffles and concrete of the distribution box appear to be of high quality (I do realize this is a separate entity).
Please keep all comments to a minimum.
“Code” compliance is, of course, a contentious issue; no one purchasing a 40-year-old home can reasonably expect that all of the home’s features will comply with current building codes, nor can the owners be required to update every item to current codes, which cover a wide range of topics from structure to mechanicals to lot line setbacks and clearances to radon mitigation.
- Septic tanks of greater capacity can lengthen the life of any drainfield in general; nevertheless, my 50+ years of expertise in this field leads me to advise that it would be folly to place any expectations on a 40-year-old septic drainfield’s ability to perform.
- It’s all too usual for new homeowners to move into a house, possibly with a younger or larger family, and immediately discover that the drainfield has collapsed due to a lack of maintenance.
- We had an inspection on a 40 year old house with the original septic system.
- Working with our realtor, I’m attempting to determine if the property owners would be willing to replace it with a new 1500-gallon tank.
- Greg Once the new drainfield has been installed, if there is enough space on the site for it, the contractor leaves everything in the old field in its original condition while excavating new drainfield trenches either in another location or in parallel with the existing trenches.
- If there isn’t enough space, the entire field design is dubious and should be reviewed by a septic engineer who will take into consideration soil perc rates, available space, and other factors.
Beyond that basic advise I’m uncertain what about your site necessitates digging up and shifting old lines but I assume it’s a shortage of space for the fields.
Just the size of an extra hole that will have to be excavated on my land in order to fit all of the stone, sand, and whatever other materials come with it is something I’m concerned about.
Once again, thank you.
You might be wondering how much excavation and disruption will be required in the first place.
Thank you so much for your prompt answer.
That being said, he said that all of the debris from the failed field would be buried in another location in my yard, which I’m not certain about.
Alternatively, should I request that the material be taken away?
Once again, thank you.
After a few years, you switch between them, giving the one that is “off” time to thin and reduce the likelihood of clogging and failure.
It’s a well-known design, however if I were the builder, I wouldn’t make any guarantees about how long it will last.
See STEPS FOR IMPROVED SEPTIC LIFEHello Sirs and Madams, My standard drain field, which has been in place for 23 years, is nearing the end of its useful life.
His advice is to build a new chamber field and install a valve to allow for switching from one field to another.
He stated that my traditional system will self-restore after approximately 7 years and will continue to function normally.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Rita According on what you’ve described, a realistic planning estimate indicates that you’ll need to:1.
replace your existing septic tank.
create a drainage system (or at the very least scope every drainfield line and dig up a couple of sample cross-sections to see how the field was constructed, amount of gravel, biomat condition) If the tree and its roots are removed, the drainfield must be relocated to an appropriate location.
What about a system that was built in 1978 but has seen minimal use since then?
Twenty years ago, a tree root had broken the cement tank in half, so they chopped the tree root and placed root killer in it.
We wish to bring the property back to life, however we are unsure about the system after so many years of inactivity.
We had a discussion about this system at You’ll see that I’ve presented a number of questions that I hope will assist you get a better understanding of the current state of the system.
We have a steel clargester that has been in service for 30 years and manages the garbage for nine residences.
Ron, how many more years do you think it will be before it has to be replaced?
I wish there was a solution like this that worked and didn’t pollute the environment like some of the harsh chemicals that people have tried in the past.
Is there a method to divide the field into smaller sections?
Alternatively, view the FAQs on SEPTIC LIFE EXPECTANCY- questions and answers that were originally presented at the conclusion of this page. Alternatively, consider the following:
Articles on the life expectancy of a septic system
- DISHWASHER vs. SEPTICS
- NO ROCK SEPTIC SYSTEM LIFE
- SEPTIC LIFE EXPECTANCY
- DISHWASHER vs. SEPTICS
- THE COMPARISON OF DISHWASHER AND SEPTICS
- NO ROCK SEPTIC SYSTEM LIFE
- SEPTIC LIFE EXPECTANCY
- THE COMPARISON OF DISHWASHER AND SEPTICS
Suggested citation for this web page
DISHWASHER VS. SEPTICS; NO ROCK SEPTIC SYSTEM LIFE; SEPTIC LIFE EXPECTANCY; DISHWASHER VS. SEPTICS; DISHWASHER VS. SEPTICS; DISHWASHER VS. SEPTICS;
INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES:ARTICLE INDEX to SEPTIC SYSTEMS
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How to Run a Septic Tank Line From Your House
A septic system is made up of two lengths of pipe that are connected together. Initially, it runs from the house, where the system services are located, to a tank, where the waste is separated and solids settle out. The second section runs from the tank to the drainage field, where fluids from the tank are dispersed into the earth underneath the tank. The process of installing the first run of pipe is quite similar to that of installing a traditional sewage line. It is necessary to maintain a downhill slope to the storage tank.
Locating the Septic Tank
The tank serves as the nerve center of the septic system. It is required to be situated between the residence and the drainage field. Each and every septic installation must begin with a soil test, and depending on the results, soil conditions may necessitate the placement of the tank in a less-than-ideal site for digging sewer lines. Also required are minimum setback distances from property borders, functioning wells, surface water and other obstructions to provide a safe working environment.
A standard septic tank has a 4-inch intake at the top, which is positioned towards the bottom. Ideally, a 1/4-inch-per-foot slope toward the pipe from the house should be maintained by the pipe connecting to it. To put it another way, for every 10 feet of distance between a tank and a home, the inlet must be 2 1/2 inches lower than where the pipe departs the house at its lowest point. The pipe usually exits at ground level, although it may need to pass beneath a foundation footing or concrete pad in rare cases.
Digging the Trench
The trench for the septic pipe should be dug before the hole for the tank since you will need a backhoe to complete the work and the tank will get in your way if it is already in the ground. The pipe should lay on a 2- or 3-inch bed of drain rock to allow rainfall to drain, so take this extra depth into mind when digging.
It is normal to use a four-inch pipe, and it should be installed far enough down to link with the main soil stack, which is a three-inch pipe that runs vertically past the main bathroom and through the roof of the home.
Local building and health agencies will demand permits for a septic tank installation. You will also be required to submit a design plan before the permits will be provided, so prepare ahead of time. This layout should be developed in collaboration with a local builder who is familiar with the unique characteristics of the topography in your neighborhood. Stay away from planting trees or plants near the tank, drainage field, or any of the pipe systems. They will be drawn to the pipes in their hunt for nutrition, and their roots will be able to successfully block them.
Removal may be both expensive and time-consuming.
Caring for Septic Systems
However, while it may appear that maintaining a septic system is more difficult than maintaining a sewer system, it is just a little amount of effort to avoid big repair or replacement expenditures in the future. Do you know what happens when you flush the toilet? Photo courtesy of Josh Reynolds In a metropolis, people seldom give the question much attention because their wastes are normally channeled via a central sewage system and then to a wastewater treatment facility. Most suburban and rural homes, on the other hand, have their own on-site wastewater systems.
- Instead of using a sewage system, on-site systems collect, treat, and dispose of wastewater generated by your home on your own property.
- Cesspools are enormous vaults made of brick, stone, or concrete in which solids can collect and settle.
- A privy is a simple structure built over a hole in the ground that may be relocated once it has been filled.
- Privies are generally considered illegal, although you may come across them in extreme rural areas.
- Plastic is being used in the manufacture of newer tanks (as illustrated above).
- (Images courtesy of John Van Pelt) Wastes are transported from the toilet, sink, shower, or washer to the septic tank through the indoor plumbing system.
- The tank is a waterproof, subterranean receptacle where microbes decompose the solid waste.
- With each run through the tank, lighter particles and grease rise to the surface and congeal to the surface, generating an imperceptible floating layer that remains in the tank.
Although the liquid has reached this condition, it still includes a huge amount of hazardous bacteria and organic materials. In order for the liquid to reach underground water supplies, it must first pass through the soil and be absorbed.
Why Do Septic Systems Fail?
It is inevitable that solids will accumulate in the septic tank due to the fact that the pace of decomposition is far slower than the rate at which the system is adding new sewage. Some substances, on the other hand, will never disintegrate at all. Furthermore, the fats and oils that build in the scum layer accumulate at a higher pace than the rate of breakdown, resulting in a scum layer. The scum layer is held in place by baffles in the tank. Scum can get into the disposal pipes through broken baffles, blocking them and making the disposal system malfunction.
- All of these items will not degrade, and they may have the effect of killing the “good bacteria” or just clogging the tank’s drainage system.
- The main issues with older systems are the degradation of components (especially tank baffles) and the clogging of laterals (pipes in the leach field).
- These, which are made of ceramic pipes or concrete blocks, are susceptible to cracking or deterioration over time.
- In the past, pipes were often composed of ceramics or tar paper composites, which had a lifespan of 20 to 30 years if used properly.
Maintaining Your Septic System
The disposal field (also known as the leaching bed) is set out in the shape of a pitchfork on level ground. The leaching bed may zig-zag downwards in areas where the home is situated on a rise. Many homeowners, particularly those who live in older homes, are unsure about the exact location of their tank and field in relation to their home. It is critical that you identify the location of the tank since it will ultimately require service. First, locate the pumpout and observation openings on the equipment.
- To gently probe the soil for the tank and distribution box, you can also use a slender steel rod with a 1/8-inch diameter to gently probe the earth.
- Once you’ve located the tank, look for the dumping field, which is normally accessible by a distribution box fanning from it.
- Please be aware that identifying the laterals can be difficult—in fact, in some situations even septic professionals have problems locating all of the components of the system.
- The most important thing to remember is to empty your tank on a regular basis.
- Depending on the size of the tank and the number of people that it serves, the frequency will vary.
- A septic tank requires cleaning on average every three to five years if it is used and cared for correctly (more if you use a sink-mounted garbage disposal unit).
- Expect to spend around $200 for each pumpout, depending on the size of the tank and your geographic location.
In addition, while the tank is open, the technician can inject some water into the distribution box to obtain an idea of how effectively the leach field is performing.
You should also use caution while just peeking in the tank.
Depending on the tree, roots can grow up to 30′ to 40′ from the base of the tree and burst or dislodge the distribution box, connecting pipes, and laterals.
Don’t even think of driving cars or heavy equipment over the dumping area.
Because of this, solids will ascend to the top of the tank and block the laterals, overloading the tank.
Installing water-saving toilets and showerheads is one technique to limit the quantity of water that enters the system.
Don’t attach sump pumps to your septic system until you’ve fixed any leaky toilets and faucets.
After being clogged with sediments or having their integrity compromised by tree roots or automobiles, laterals begin to collapse.
Cooking oils, fats, and grease should not be poured down the kitchen sink drain.
Please do not flush non-biodegradable things such as disposable diapers, clumps of cat litter, filtered cigarettes, feminine hygiene products or plastic tampon applicators, paper towels, condoms, or other similar materials.
These chemicals have the potential to harm beneficial microorganisms in the tank and the soil, as well as pollute groundwater supplies.
None of these goods has been shown to be of considerable benefit in terms of enhancing performance or preventing failures.
Many over-the-counter septic system cleaning products include chemicals that are potentially harmful and are not biodegradable, as is the case with many household products.
Experts advise against using cleansers that contain sodium hydroxide, potassium hydroxide, or hydrogen peroxide.
Use of any product containing toxic chemicals in excess of one percent by weight is prohibited, including trichloroethane, trichloroethylene, tetrachloroethylene, methylene chloride, benzene, carbon tetrachloride, toluene, napthalene, trichlorophenol, pentachlorophenol, acrolein, acrylonitrile, and benzidine.
How To Tell If Your System Is Failing
While there are no 100-percent accurate ways for spotting a malfunctioning septic system, you should be on the lookout for the following signs of a potential problem: In the event of a toilet backup into the house: To begin, rule out the possibility of a clogged soil line or other interior plumbing issues. Drainage system failure due to sewage or effluent leaking into the structure or basement: The water resulting from this condition will have a distinct odor. In the vicinity of the disposal field, there is a puddle of effluent on the soil surface.
It is not recommended that the grass above the septic field be too green in a healthy system.
It is important to remember that wastewater on the ground is a major health danger and should be addressed as soon as is practical.
What To Do If The System Fails
If you have any reason to believe that your system is failing, contact your local health department. In addition, you should seek the services of a skilled septic system installer. Then collaborate with both of these parties to build a strategy for moving forward. It is not unusual to find a septic system that is either underdesigned for the current level of use required by the residents, incorrectly placed, or at a position that will no longer sustain the sort of system that is already installed in an older home.
While a new septic system installation can be expensive (usually between $4,000 and $10,000), a properly operating septic system is critical to the running of your home as well as the health and safety of you and your loved ones.
As with so many other aspects of an old property, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to septic systems.
Prevent Septic System Problems During Heavy Rain
Do you have a slow-draining toilet in your bathroom? When you flush your toilet, does it make a gurgling sound? Is there standing water in your leach field area that has a foul odor to it? All of these concerns might be signs of septic problems, which are more common during years with a lot of rain. Heavy rains can cause ground water levels to increase, resulting in flooded leach fields that are unable to function efficiently. If your septic system has not been properly maintained, heavy rains might potentially cause difficulties.
In the event that solid waste makes its way to the leach field, it has the potential to block the leach lines or, even worse, clog the soil pores.
If the pores in the earth get clogged, your septic system will not function properly. You can maintain your septic tank running smoothly by doing the following preventative maintenance procedures:
- Every 3-5 years, you should pump out your septic tank. It is recommended to pump the septic tank every 3-5 years to prevent the solids side of the tank from overflowing into the liquid side of the tank, which drains to the leach field. Riser and lids for septic tanks should be installed. The majority of tanks are buried beneath the earth and are not easily accessible. In order to prevent flooding, it is recommended to have your septic tank dug up and to build risers with lids at the ground level. If a problem does arise, septic tank risers and lids make it possible to make repairs more quickly and at a lower cost. It will be necessary to locate and dig up your underground septic tank lid, or to hire someone to do it for you, in order for the tank to be serviced if you do not have risers and lids. Most septic tanks have their tops buried between 1′ and 3′ below the surface of the ground. Check out the baffle shirts. Inside the tank, baffle tees can be located on each side of the pipes leading into and out of the tank. Ties used to block the flow of wastewater are called baffle tees. The baffle tee allows incoming trash to flow into the tank below the crust level, allowing it to be recycled. Check to see that the baffle tees are correctly placed and that they are not blocked with debris. If a baffle tee is not present, this will result in tank stoppages because the solid side crust level will prevent the flow of incoming waste from entering the tank.
If you require expert septic tank services in the local area, contact Fletcher’s Plumbing Contracting at 530-285-3793 now. Visit our website for further details.
How to Find My Septic Tank Lines
Credit: Petegar/E+/Getty Images for the image
In This Article
- Septic System Fundamentals
- Identifying and Locating a Septic Tank on Your Property
- Conducting Regular Inspections
- Checking for Clean-Outs
- Identifying Natural Indicators
- Viewing System Diagrams
- Seek Professional Assistance
- Check the distribution box
- Understand the size and scope of the project.
Wondering where your septic lines run? It is critical to know where the septic tank is located on a property in order to properly manage and preserve the system. For example, you don’t want to pave over the ground or grow trees too close together in a forest. It is possible to obtain a copy of the septic tank diagram of the drain field, which will give you a fair sense of where the pipes will go. If this is not the case, you may need to attempt some other methods of locating septic drain lines.
The solids and liquids are separated within the tank by a baffle or wall that is built inside the tank.
When pipes get clogged or when drain fields become too saturated with fluids, problems arise.
Locating a Septic Tank on Your Property
Begin your search for the septic tank lines at the residence first. Drain lines from the home’s plumbing should be traced to the septic tank, which is typically located 10 to 20 feet from the home’s exterior. The drain line connects the tank’s end, which is located opposite the house, to the leach field. Check the natural slope of the ground to see whether the leach field may be found there. It is never a good idea to look for drain lines using heavy gear, wrecking bars, or jackhammers. Call your local electric utility provider or gas company to discover hidden gas or utility lines before digging.
Plunge the long, thin metal probe into the earth until you can feel it strike the tank and feel the tank’s edges.
Perform Regular Inspection
According to industry experts, you should examine your septic tanks and, if required, pump them out once every three years. If you are experiencing gurgling sounds in your house or water backing up after your system has been repaired, a saturated drain field might be the source of the problem. Drain fields that have been clogged or damaged are unable to be rectified. In order for the septic system to function properly again, you’ll need to have a new drain field installed. Find capped clean-outs that are a few inches vertically above the ground in the leach field itself, or check behind a wall or in a closet in the basement for capped clean-outs.
- You can visually trace the orientation of the pipe from the clean-out if there is no other information available.
- Credit: Kyryl Gorlov/iStock/Getty Images for the image.
- When you are looking for the lines, look for grass or vegetation that greens in stripes when the grass surrounding it browns.
- Putting hot water into your system might cause snow or ice to melt above the drain pipes if the system is not properly insulated.
- If you have a deep system, as is the case for homes with basements, you will most likely not be able to observe natural signs since the drain field is too deep to be seen from above.
- Unless the system was built without a permit, the blueprints or designs for septic system installations are kept on file with the local health authority until the system is operational.
- If your search does not provide any relevant results, you can request a record search based on your street address or the tax account number associated with the property.
- If the agency has a copy of the record, they will mail it to you.
- If you don’t have a drawing of the septic system, you need enlist the assistance of a disposal system contractor or a certified liquid waste transporter to find it.
Another option is to purchase a flushable transmitter from a plumbing or rental business, or you may contract with a tank cleaning firm. The signal from the transmitter is picked up by a hand-held receiver after it has been flushed down the toilet.
Check the Distribution Box
There are certain septic tanks that feature an extra distribution box that is located a few feet from the tank on the tank’s downstream side. Water is channeled into the trenches by ports and pipes in the box. It is recommended that, if your system includes a distribution box, the box’s top be designed to expose the orientation of the ports that connect to the drain field lines. It is feasible to locate the box with a probe, but extreme caution should be exercised. Avoid applying excessive force to the probe, since this may result in damage to the box.
In most cases, individual drain lines run perpendicular to the intake line, but they may also branch into an H-pattern or other patterns that are appropriate for the terrain.
Find the location of your septic drain lines so that you can safeguard the area in and around them with a little detective work.
Septic drain field – Wikipedia
Septic drain fields, also known as leach fields or leach drains, are subsurface wastewater disposal facilities that are used to remove contaminants and impurities from the liquid that emerges after anaerobic digestion in an aseptic tank. Septic drain fields are also known as leach fields or leach drains. Microbial ecosystems decompose organic molecules in liquids by using them as energy sources. Aseptic systems are made up of a septic drain field, an aseptic tank, and any related plumbing. An arrangement of trenches with perforated pipes and porous material (oftengravel) topped with a layer of soil to prevent animals (and surface runoff) from getting the wastewater spread inside those trenches is characteristic of a drainage field.
A septic reserve area is a piece of land that has been set aside for the purpose of constructing a septic drain field (SRA).
These are more common in dry regions because the waterflow on the surface allows for irrigation (and fertilization) of agricultural land, which is beneficial in droughts.
Septic drain fields, also known as leach fields or leach drains, are subsurface wastewater disposal facilities that are used to remove contaminants and impurities from the liquid that emerges after anaerobic digestion in an aseptic tank. Septic drain fields, also known as leach fields or leach drains, are subsurface wastewater disposal facilities that are used to dispose of wastewater. Microbial ecosystems decompose organic molecules in liquids through catabolism. Among the components of an aseptic system are the septic drain field, the aseptic tank, and the accompanying piping.
A septic reserve area is a piece of land that has been set aside for the construction of a septic drain field (SRA).
A sequence of ditches and lagoons are used to dispose of wastewater in sewage treatment plants (often with little or no pre-treatment). Because the surface waterflow enables for irrigation (and fertilization) of agricultural land, they are more commonly seen in dry climates.
- Septic tank effluent will be adhered to soil particles by microbial colonies that are catabolizing soluble organic compounds from the effluent. This will diminish the interstitial space available for water movement between soil particles. When these colonies colonize the soil interface of the disposal trench, they tend to produce a biofilm of gelatinous slime with a limited permeability. A buildup of insoluble particles that are too small to be carried through the septic tank will occur at the soil interface of the disposal trench, while non-biodegradable particles such as synthetic fibers from laundry, mineral soil from washing, or bone and eggshell fragments from refuse will remain to fill the interstitial spaces that were previously available for water flow out of the trench. Flowing cooking fats or petroleum products emulsified by detergents or dissolved by solvents can pass through prior to anaerobic liquefaction when the septic tank volume is insufficient to provide adequate residence time, and they may congeal as a hydrophobic layer on the soil interface of the disposal trench. The availability of hydraulic head (or vertical distance) may be reduced as a result of rising groundwater levels, forcing gravity water flow away from the disposal trench. It is possible that effluent running downward from the disposal trench will eventually reach groundwater or impermeable rock or clay, prompting a change in direction to horizontal movement away from the drain field. In order for gravity force to overcome viscous frictional forces preventing flow through porous soil, a specified vertical distance between the effluent level in the disposal trench and the water level applicable when the effluent leaves the drain field must be maintained. If groundwater levels surrounding the drain field approach the level of effluent in the disposal trench, effluent levels in the region of the drain field will increase toward the ground surface in order to maintain the vertical distance difference
- Frozen ground may diminish the cross-sectional area available for flow or evaporation on a season-to-season basis.
Similarly, septic tanks are designed to hold anaerobic organisms capable of liquefying anticipated amounts of putrescible materials in wastewater, and drain fields are designed to hold aerobic soil microorganisms capable of decomposing the effluent from anaerobic septic tanks and releasing aerobic water into the environment. When effluent has not been entirely oxidized before reaching surrounding wells or surface waters, smells of hydrogen sulfide or iron bacteria may be detected in such places.
Groundwater flows through the aquifer soils around the drain field, islaminarin the process.
Diffusion of soluble organic compounds into groundwater is controlled by Molecular diffusion, which also controls the transport of oxygen from underlying groundwater or the capillary fringe of the groundwater surface to microorganisms capable of catabolizing dissolved organic compounds that remain in the effluent plume.
In some cases, when an aseptic tank is utilized in conjunction with a biofilter, the drain field’s height and catabolic area can be lowered. High-density residential building, less site disturbance, and more useable space for trees, swimming pools, and gardens are all possible using biofilter technology. It is possible that proper periodic maintenance will lessen the likelihood of the drain field becoming clogged. It is unlikely that the biofilter will lower the amount of liquid that must percolate into the soil, but it may reduce the oxygen demand of organic molecules in the liquid that is being treated.
Operation and maintenance
Aseptic tanks used in conjunction with biofilters have the potential to minimize both the height and catabolic area of the drain field. High-density residential building, less site disturbance, and more useable area for trees, swimming pools, and gardens may be possible using biofilter technology. It is possible to lessen the likelihood of the drain field being clogged if you do proper routine maintenance. The biofilter will not lessen the volume of liquid that must percolate into the soil, but it may reduce the oxygen requirement of organic elements present in that liquid, according to the manufacturer.
Dosing schedules or resting periods
Several distinct disposal places for effluent from a single septic tank can be provided by a drain field, which can be constructed to accommodate several septic tanks. It is possible for one region to be “rested” while effluent is channeled to another location. When the anaerobic septic tank effluent is no longer accessible, the nematode colony in the resting drain field continues to feed on the biofilm and lipids that have formed in the field. As the organic material that has collected in the soil is oxidized, this natural cleaning process may help to prevent bioclogging and increase the hydraulic capacity of the field by expanding the accessible interstitial area of the soil.
The percolation rate after resting may be close to, but not identical to, the site’s original clean water percolation rate, which is unlikely to occur.
Microorganisms in septic tanks and drain fields have very limited ability to catabolize petroleum products and chlorinated solvents, and they are incapable of removing dissolved metals, despite the fact that some metals may be absorbed into septic tank sludge or drain field soils, and their concentrations may be diluted by other groundwater in the vicinity of the drain field (see Figure 1). It is possible that cleaning formulas will affect the efficiency of the drain field. The use of laundry bleach, as well as sanitizing and deodorizing chemicals, may have a comparable effect on microbial activity in the drain field.
- Blackwater (waste)
- Dry well
- French drain
- Groundwater contamination
- Onsite sewage facility
- Reuse of human excreta
- Sewage treatment
- Wastewater treatment
- Steel, E.W.McGhee, Terence J. “Water Supply and Sewerage”McGraw-Hill Book Company (1979)ISBN0-07-060929-2pp.576-577
- ABBREVIATED PROCESS(PDF), Bel Air, Maryland, USA: Harford County Health Department, October 2014, retrieved4 April2020:CS1 maint: url-status (link)
- Alth, MaxCharlotte Water and Waste-water Technology” John Wiley & Sons (1975)ISBN0-471-34726-4pp.407-408
- Linsley, Ray K. and Franzini, Joseph B. “Water-Resources Engineering (2nd Ed.)” McGraw-Hill Book Company (1972)ISBN978-0-07-037959-6, p.88
- Linsley, Ray K. and Franzini, Joseph B. “Water-Resources Engineering” McGraw-Hill Perry, Robert H., Chilton, Cecil H., and Kirkpatrick, Sidney D. “Chemical Engineers’ Handbook (4th Ed.)” McGraw-Hill Book Company (1963), p.14-13
- Perry, Robert H., Chilton, Cecil H., and Kirkpatrick, Sidney D. “Chemical Engineers’ Handbook (4th Ed.)” McGraw-Hill Book Company (1963), p.14-13
- Perry, Robert H.
- At Wikimedia Commons, you can find images and videos connected to septic drain fields.