What Can Be Used As Back Fill Around A Septic Tank? (Solution found)


  • Fill sand is recommended for many projects that require a backfill material because it compacts into a solid mass. It is often used as a base for concrete and to fill around septic tanks. Fill dirt is used in low-lying construction sites to raise building foundations, reducing the chances of flooding.

What do I need to backfill my septic tank?

The preferred material for backfill surrounding and covering the tank is a sand/gravel mixture as described below. For blue BRUISER tanks and white cistern tanks, native soil may be used for backfill and those tanks may be left empty while backfilling.

What can you put around a septic tank?

Put plastic sheets, bark, gravel or other fill over the drainfield. Reshape or fill the ground surface over the drainfield and reserve area. However, just adding topsoil is generally OK if it isn’t more than a couple of inches. Make ponds on or near the septic system and the reserve area.

What kind of sand do you use for a septic system?

Septic sand is used as an effective filtration system in modern septic systems and sewage mounds. It is produced from some of the highest quality sand & gravel, which is washed and finely screened.

How do you hide a septic tank cover?

The Do’s For Hiding Your Septic Tank

  1. Plant tall native grasses with fibrous roots around the opening to conceal the tank lid from view.
  2. Place a light statue, bird bath or potted plant over the septic lid.
  3. Septic tank risers and covers are an alternative to concrete and blend into green grass.

Can you put mulch over septic tank?

Gardens. Landscape fabric, plastic, bark, or mulch should not be used over your septic system. These materials reduce air exchange while bark and mulch also retain excess moisture. Adding more than a few inches of soil over the drainfield, such as for raised beds, limits air exchange and can lead to compaction.

Can you put anything over a septic field?

To maintain the integrity and longevity of your drainfield, you should never put anything heavy on top of any part of it. You shouldn’t even drive over the drainfield, as the vehicle can crush the drainfield lines. Heavy items cause soil compaction.

How do you bury a septic tank?

In most cases, septic tank components including the lid, are buried between 4 inches and 4 feet underground. You can use a metal probe to locate its edges and mark the perimeter. If you do not find the lid by probing, shallow excavation with a shovel along the tank’s perimeter should reveal the lid.

Why is the ground soft around my septic tank?

The presence of healthy, lushly growing plants around your septic tank or along the route of your drainage lines indicates wet areas, as does a spongy or damp feel to the ground. Excess moisture might mean that your tank is full or that your drainage pipes are damaged.

Can you put a backflow preventer on a septic system?

If a septic system is located in a flood-prone area, a plumber should install a backflow preventer on the building sewer so sewage cannot back up into the home during a flood. A backflow preventer is recommended, as a simple check valve may not close properly and sewage may back up into the home.

Why does my septic tank fill up when it rains?

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

Proper Backfill for Septic Tanks

Receive articles, stories, and videos about septic tanks delivered directly to your email! Now is the time to sign up. Septic Tanks and More Receive Notifications After a septic tank has been installed, it must be backfilled in the proper manner. Backfilling all tanks with successively tamped “lifts” or depth increments of consistent gradation should be the standard procedure. The installer should ensure that the backfill material is devoid of clods, big boulders, frozen stuff, and debris, all of which can cause voids in the backfill material, which may enable the foundation to settle over time.

Each layer should be homogeneous in thickness, no more than 24 inches thick, and of roughly identical heights around the perimeter of the tank, with the exception of the top layer.

If the material being used is compactable, it should be compacted in order to prevent the earth surrounding the tank from sinking.

Backfill the tank with granular material until it reaches at least the midseam of the tank to ensure that settling is kept to a minimum.

  1. Fill around a septic tank that has been compacted All pipe penetrations through all tanks must remain waterproof after the tanks have been refilled with water.
  2. In order to provide a stable foundation for the pipe, the backfilled earth should be tapped.
  3. Pipe joints should be laid atop native soil rather than in the excavation to avoid the risk of their settling in the future.
  4. It is possible to sleeve pipes that may run over the top of the tank or through excavated portions (such as electrical conduit and/or return lines) to give additional support.

It is possible that the manufacturer of a nonconcrete tank will recommend or require that the tank be simultaneously filled with water to just above the backfill level in order to avoid uneven or excessive pressure on the tank walls during the installation process and to reduce the risk of the tank shifting position during installation.

It may be required to use a tamping tool to ensure that backfill makes adequate contact with and between tank ribs, but care must be given to prevent harming the tank during the process.

She has a master’s degree in civil engineering and a doctorate in environmental engineering.

Her responsibilities include serving as the education chair for the Minnesota Onsite Wastewater Association and the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association, as well as serving on the National Science Foundation’s International Committee on Wastewater Treatment Systems.

Send an email to [email protected] if you have any concerns concerning septic system care and operation. Heger will respond as soon as possible.

Septic Tank Installation Best Practices

Dennis Hallahan, P.E., posted a message on For a high-quality septic tank installation, proper excavation and bedding techniques must be followed closely. The optimal methods for establishing a septic tank are outlined in this section of the guide.


Before installing the tank, make sure that the site has been adequately dug and that the base has been leveled. The length and breadth of the excavation should be sufficient to allow for appropriate compaction and backfilling, as well as, most significantly, to offer a safe working environment for the construction team. Prior to establishing the tank, the heel of the bucket can be used to compress the excavation bottom before the tank is set.

Setting the Septic Tank:

The septic tank should be lowered into the hole with care and precision. Ensure that the tank is level in both directions and that it is level in both directions as needed.

Backfill and Compaction:

The backfilling of the tank should be done in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions for installation. The backfilling of Infiltrator’s IM-Series tanks may be done with native soil in lifts of 12 inches on all sides of the tank when the tanks are installed. Fill up any gaps between bucket lifts of 12″ and by walking through the dirt surrounding the tank to make it more compacted. Tees should be installed at the prescribed places, and risers should be erected in accordance with the plan and the manufacturer’s instructions as well.

See also:  How Often Should A 1250 Gallon Septic Tank Be Pumped? (Correct answer)

Following correct backfill and compacting of the septic tank, topsoil should be placed up to the final grade and positive drainage should be provided away from the septic tank. In addition, the land should be seeded to reduce erosion and channel surface water away from the site. For further information on septic tank installation, please refer to our video collection or the Infiltrator IM-Series Septic Tank General Installation Instructions in our Online Resource Center, both of which are available for free.

Consult the local health department or permitting authorities if you are unclear about what is required for a given location.

About the Author: Dennis Hallahan, P.E.Technical Director

Following correct backfill and compacting of the septic tank, topsoil should be added up to the final grade and positive drainage should be provided away from the septic tank. In addition, the site should be planted to reduce erosion and redirect surface water away from the structure. For further information on septic tank installation, please refer to our video library or the Infiltrator IM-Series Septic Tank General Installation Instructions in our Online Resource Center, both of which may be found in our Video Library.

All septic tanks must be installed in accordance with state and/or municipal standards, which take precedence over the manufacturer’s installation guidelines. Consult the local health department or permitting authorities if you are unclear of what is required for a given site.

Using gravel back fill around septic tank instead of drain field (grey water forum at permies)

7 years have passed since this post.

  • Sending the appropriate number of slices with an optional ‘thank-you’ message is as follows:

Optional ‘thank-you’ note:; Number of slices to be sent;

What Gravel Do You Use in a Septic Tank Bed?

Gravel is made up of tiny bits of rock that are thrown together. Photograph courtesy of Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images Septic tanks are used by homeowners in remote places who do not have access to municipal sewage services to dispose of the wastewater generated by their homes. The tank requires a bed of well-draining material beneath it in order to regulate the rate at which water drains from it. Because you choose the gravel, you may rest assured that your yard will not grow muddy and damp due to sewage.

Size of Gravel

Gravel is made up of microscopic pieces of rock that are thrown together. Credit: Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images for the image In remote places where there is no public sewer system, septic tanks are used to dispose of the wastewater generated by residents’ homes. It is necessary to place the tank on a bed of well-draining material beneath it in order to manage how rapidly water drains from it. By using gravel, you may avoid having your yard get muddy and soiled with sewage water.


Not every gravel is made from the same sort of crushed rock as another type of gravel. Although softer stones, such as sandstone and shale, are commonly utilized for roads and ornamental purposes, these types of stones will not serve as a septic tank bed. Without compressing or crushing the bed, a septic tank full of waste and water would be too heavy to support it. In the opinion of Maloney’s Landscape Supplies, granite gravel is robust enough to sustain the tank, which makes it an excellent choice for use in septic systems.


Not every gravel is made from the same sort of crushed rock that another type of gravel is made from. Driveways and cosmetic reasons are served by softer stones such as sandstone and shale, however they are ineffective as septic tank bed materials. The bed must be robust enough to support the weight of a septic tank filled with waste and water without compressing or crushing it. According to Maloney’s Landscape Supplies, granite gravel is robust enough to hold a tank, making it an excellent choice for use in septic tanks.


Gravel is not the only drainage material that may be used in the construction of a septic tank bed. According to the National Environmental Service Center, sand and crushed materials – such as recycled tires, concrete pieces of the appropriate size, and shattered glass – all function in some cases. It will function as long as the material does not degrade when exposed to water, allows for drainage, and supports the tank. The whole drainage process is handled by a prepared vault in certain septic systems, therefore a bed is not required in these systems.

Septic Tank Manufacturing — Rahn Sanitary Service

The excavation for the septic tank must be approximately 24″ longer and broader in diameter than the tank measurements if you are doing the installation yourself. Installing the septic tank on a level, secure foundation that will not settle is essential. It is necessary that the bottom of the hole be level. If there are rocks visible in the tank hole, then sand or pea gravel should be used to fill up the hole. It is important to backfill the earth around the tank gently and uniformly around all four sides in order to ensure that the tank does not shift during construction.

  1. When backfilling around the concrete riser, extreme caution should be exercised.
  2. In the septic tank, the inlet and outlet connections have already been fitted.
  3. Installing a watertight manhole riser that extends to the ground surface or above is required for a septic tank installation.
  4. A properly installed and weighted septic tank, or the installation of an anti-buoyancy device, is required if the septic tank is to be put in an area with high ground water levels.

It should be noted that our dosing septic tank is intended to take only a “Orenco Pump and Vault Assembly.” The pump assembly can be installed in the tank prior to delivery if you choose.

Backfilling For Underground Fuel, Septic & Water Tanks

In order to preserve the integrity of your underground fuel, septic, or water tank, or an ADS StormTech system, it’s critical to use the right backfill material and installation procedures. This involves much more than a shovel and a bucket of soil to complete the job correctly and safely. Ground Solutions’ staff has more than 15 years of backfilling experience and can advise you on the best materials and equipment to use for your particular project. For example, did you know that a cylinder tank cannot be fully backfilled with soil, and that aggregate must be used instead to prevent voids and settling in order to prevent settling?

Backfilling with more traditional methods may be incredibly time consuming, especially when working on bigger projects with a lot of material.

Bedrock Slingers are rock slinger trucks that are used for bedrock slinging.

Backfilling the vacuum up to the tank’s maximum capacity is a standard work for us, but we are more than pleased to discuss any special projects you may have in mind.

Plastic septic tanks

I’m certain that one of these elements was not followed throughout the installation since there was too much chance for error: whistling I looked up the installation instructions and found them to be as follows: 5. EXTERIOR BACKFILLING WORK A WARNING: BE CAREFUL. Tank should be filled with water as you backfill it, maintaining the water level even with the backfill, and leveling the tank as you go to avoid a possible collapse. B. Backfill with 12″ layers of material, compacting between each layer.

  1. Tamp and compress the backfill material beneath the inlet and outflow pipes.
  2. – 6.
  3. Backfilling blue BRUISER tanks and white cistern tanks with native soil is permissible, and the tanks may be left empty while the soil is being re-filled with it.
  4. After installation, BRUISER tanks and cistern tanks should be filled to a quarter of their capacity.
  5. The sand/gravel mixture should be a combination of sand and gravel with a particle size of no more than 1-1/2″ and no more than 50% of the particle size of 1/4″.
  6. Any wood, masonry debris, silt, or clay should be removed from the fill material.
See also:  How Much Weight On Septic Tank? (Question)

It is possible that the tank could collapse and its contents will spill out.

Tanks are not immune to fires in any way.

It is not permissible to place any tank in the way of cars or heavy equipment.

If a yellow or black septic tank is drained as part of routine maintenance, it should be refilled as soon as possible.

It is permissible to leave the spherical 300 and 500 gallon tanks empty.


Where approved by local standards, blue BRUISER tanks, white cistern tanks, and 300 or 500 gallon spherical tanks can be utilized for holding or pumping applications.

Yellow septic tanks and black septic tanks are not permitted to be used for the storage of drinking water.

Keep sharp items away from the tank, as they might pierce it and produce a leak.

In any other situation, Norwesco strongly warns against the usage of a plastic subterranean tank! Such applications would void any express or implied guarantee provided by Norwesco on the product. Norwesco shall in no way be liable for any indirect or consequential damages of any kind.

Should I install the vessel in concrete or gravel?

When it comes to establishing a sewage treatment system or a septic tank, one of the most often asked questions is which backfill material to use. Concrete and pea gravel/pea shingle are the two backfill materials that we propose for use in the installation process. Advantages of using concrete as a backfill material After setting, concrete forms a natural solid shell around the tank, preventing any undue pressure from being applied to the vessel’s structural members. This implies that the tank’s structural integrity will not be jeopardized, and if there is any flooding or movement on the site, the tank should be provided with additional stability and protection.

Advantages of using pea gravel/pea shingle as a backfill material According to the manufacturer’s specifications, some vessels are acceptable for installation with crushed pea gravel or crushed pea shingle.

Generally speaking, vessels constructed of GRP (fiberglass) are inappropriate for installation with pea gravel because the material might become damaged or implode when the vessel is mounted.

Septic Tank Installation

With offices in Raleigh and the neighboring areas of the Triangle, Forever Clean offers septic tank installation services to residents of the area. Whenever conventional septic tank pumping or septic tank maintenance will not suffice, it is time to rely on our professional team to assist you with your new septic tank installation project. In order to offer you with a quick and inexpensive quotation for the removal of your old septic tank as well as the installation of your new septic tank, our crew will arrive on-site and on-time for your appointment.

Septic Tank Installation Process

Our septic tank and system installation procedure at Forever Clean is meant to be as quick and as efficient as possible. A consultation is the first step in our process of installing your new septic system or tank, during which we learn about your septic needs and requirements. An on-site examination follows, during which we analyze your property and acquire a clear picture of the complexity of your septic system installation job. Once we have provided you with a price and you have decided to proceed, we will begin the process of constructing your new septic system.

We make every effort to restore your property to its pre-installation condition, and we will not leave until you are completely happy with our job. Our polite staff The following are the steps that we do as part of our service:

  • In order to guarantee that your property is safe and clean, we will remove your present septic tank in a safe and efficient way utilizing cutting-edge technology. Inspection of your septic systemInstallation: Once you’ve decided on the new system that’s best for you, we’ll install it for you, making certain that it’s installed in the most efficient spot possible on your property. It is our goal to keep your yard safe and clean, therefore we backfill around the system and test all of our work with a final inspection to confirm that your new septic system is functioning correctly
  • Maintenance of Septic Tank: Finally, we will supply you with an affordableSeptic PumpingService plan that will ensure that your septic tank is thoroughly cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. Proper septic tank maintenance is essential to ensuring that your septic tank continues to operate at peak performance for many years to come.

We provide the most comprehensive range of septic system installation services in the Triangle, and our skilled experts have years of experience installing high-quality septic systems for customers just like you. Our company is really happy to be a family-owned business, which means that we are concerned about every part of your experience with us. Do you have any queries about the process? Good! The removal and replacement of a septic tank is a major undertaking. When it comes to larger tasks like these, the homeowner is likely to have more questions than he or she can answer.

When it comes to septic installation, we go above and beyond to ensure that the process is as easy and stress-free as possible.

High-quality equipment and materials, as well as knowledgeable employees The Forever Clean team is constantly striving to keep up to date on the newest technology and products in the septic business, ensuring that we are always able to provide our customers with the most up-to-date, high-quality septic systems possible.

Forever Clean is your go-to option for septic installation in Raleigh, NC, and across the Triangle region, thanks to our high-quality equipment and supplies, as well as our knowledgeable staff and commitment to providing excellent customer service.

Several factors influence septic tank installation costs, including the size and complexity of the operation as well as the kind and size of septic system being constructed.

Therefore, without knowing more about your individual project, it is impossible to provide a firm response to this issue.

  • Call 919-552-0200 at 116 W. Academy St., Fuquay Varina, NC 27526.

About Forever Clean

We are a full-service septic cleaning, drain cleaning, and porta potty rental company based in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina, and we serve the greater Triangle area, including Wake, Durham, Chatham, Johnston, and Harnett counties, as well as Raleigh, Cary, Durham, Chapel Hill, Pittsboro, Apex,Garner, Holly Springs, Fuquay-Varina, Lillington, Clayton, Zebulon, and Wake Forest. We are

How Long Does Septic Tank Last?

Concrete tanks have a lifespan that is determined by the manufacturer and the year in which they were constructed. The regulations governing tank manufacture differ from one state to the next. A sort of on-site sewage facility is represented by a septic tank.

This type of toilet is commonly seen in rural locations that are not linked to the municipal sewer system. After 23 years in the septic tank maintenance field, I’ve discovered that the vast majority of people are completely unaware of how their septic system works or how to properly maintain one.

Septic Tank Types and Design

Concrete, plastic, and fiberglass are the most common materials used to construct septic tanks. Some tanks were made of steel in the past, but this is no longer the case. Metal tanks, on the other hand, are currently prohibited in several states. Steel tanks are prone to corrosion, which can result in holes and the possibility of collapse in some cases. It might also make it tough to get rid of them.

See also:  If I Dont Have A Septic Tank, What Do I Have?

Average LifeSpan of a Septic Tank

Photograph courtesy of mrrooter.com Tanks made of plastic or fiberglass will survive nearly indefinitely if they are erected with care and attention to detail. Almost 90% of the failures we observe are caused by poor tank installation depth or improper backfilling of the space around the tank. If they are buried too deeply, the weight of the dirt on top of the tank might cause the tank to become twisted and even shatter if it is not properly supported. Depending on the manufacturer, different depths are recommended for tank installation.

  1. If, on the other hand, rocky soil is used to backfill around the tank, the pebbles may eventually rub a hole in or puncture the tank over time.
  2. The regulations governing tank manufacture differ from one state to the next.
  3. As the cast iron deteriorates, it often shuts up, similar to a blocked artery, delaying or completely stopping the flow of blood through them.
  4. Tanks were frequently fitted with a plastic baffle, which was connected to the tank walls, throughout the 1980s and 1990s, in order to remedy difficulties with concrete and cast iron baffles.
  5. PVC pipe baffles are used in the construction of concrete tanks constructed between the mid-1990s and the present day.

Factors Affecting Septic Tank Lifespan

Photograph courtesy of chicagotribune.com The human being, as is true of most things in this world, is the biggest threat to a tank’s longevity. When a tank is erected and maintained properly, it will often endure for several decades, provided that it is protected from human error and natural disasters during that period. Natural disasters include things like when a tree falls on top of a tank or when a major lightning strike occurs (something I’ve only witnessed once in my life). Tanks are susceptible to cracking or breaking in earthquake-prone areas.

It is possible that the top of the tank will break or collapse in due to human error, such as when individuals decide to drive or park heavy things such as equipment or cars over the tank’s top, even if the tank is underground.

At the very least, this makes it difficult to keep the tank in good condition.

It’s also crucial to be aware of the kind of trees that have been grown in the region where your septic system will be installed.

More information on this issue may be found on our BBBseptic.com blog.

Signs of an Aging Septic Tank

Cleanwateraction.org is the source of this image. Cracks, fractures, and punctures on the outside of tanks are frequently caused by pebbles or hidden sharp objects, although you won’t normally notice them unless you dig up and uncover the tank and examine it closely. The tank’s inside can frequently reveal signs of deterioration that would otherwise go undetected. The most important signal is the water level. If the level is very high, it may signal that there is an issue with the tank’s egress section, the distribution box, or the lateral line system itself.

If you have an older tank with baffles that are not made of PVC, you may notice that the plastic baffles are beginning to peel off or have fully fallen off.

Both of these forms of degradation may be remedied by having a professional install a new PVC baffle assembly in their place.

Most of the time, this is only cosmetic and should not be a source of concern.

Proper Septic Tank Maintenance

Credit for the image goes to dropinanddecorate.org. The installation and maintenance of septic systems varies from state to state in the United States, owing to differing norms and regulations. This is largely impacted by the soil types found in different places, ranging from sandy soil near the gulf coast to black dirt in the north, as well as the moist circumstances found in the lowlands and the dry conditions found in the southwest. Fortunately, there are some easy recommendations that apply to the majority of situations, such as pumping out your tank on a regular basis and remembering not to flush any more solid objects or trash down your drains than strictly required.

This implies that typical usage will result in a solid buildup that will need to be pumped away in order to prevent them from accumulating in the absorption region and compromising the soil’s capacity to cleanse the water when it re-enters the natural water tables.

When employing a septic system in an area where the water comes from a spring or well, it is important to make it easier for the natural bacteria to proliferate.

It’s also crucial to remember that the use of antibacterial soaps, bleach, detergents, and cleaners, as well as various drugs and medical treatments such as chemotherapy, may inhibit or prevent the growth of germs.

This is especially true in the home. Some septic system bacteria therapies are effective in alleviating these problems. BBB Septic and Portable Toilets is a family-owned business.


Photo credit: dropinanddecorate.org (taken from their website). Septic systems are established and maintained in a variety of ways depending on the state in which you live in the United States. In large part, this is determined by the soil types found in different places, ranging from sandy soil along the gulf coast to black dirt in the north, and by the moist circumstances found in the lowlands or the dry conditions found in the southwest. Fortunately, there are some easy recommendations that apply to the majority of situations, such as regularly pumping out your tank and remembering not to drop any more solid objects or rubbish down your drains than strictly required.

The result of this is that typical usage will result in a solid buildup that will need to be pumped away in order to prevent them from accumulating in the absorption region and compromising the soil’s capacity to cleanse the water when it re-enters the natural water table.

It is recommended that those who use a septic system in areas where the water supply is provided by a spring or well make it simpler for the naturally occurring bacteria to flourish.

As a side note, it’s crucial to remember that the usage of antibacterial products such as antibacterial soaps and disinfectants, as well as some drugs and medical treatments such as chemotherapy, will inhibit or prevent the growth of bacteria in the environment.

We are a BBB Accredited Septic and Portable Toilet Contractor.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *