Septic Systems for Custom Homes
Good morning. This is Bill Freeman, with Freeman’s Construction. I’m here waiting for an inspection on the septic system that was recently added onto and repaired. The size of the existing system here needed to increase in size with this new house. That is the new sewer line coming in, and as you can see, we had to repair the tank, because it was broken. It had an old clay pipe inside, which is what the old tanks included. This is the actual piece that we took out of there. The old clay always breaks off, which limits the proper flow into the tank, and then things can get plugged up.
Diagnosing the Smell
As you can see, this tank is a two-compartment tank, and you can see the new line we put in. There’s a new cap on top of that “T”. Often, we get a call from somebody saying that they smell sewer around their house. If they’re on a septic system, what’s happened is that the cap has either come off or it never got put on. This allows the smell to vent back up through the pipes, out the top of the roof vents, and then depending on the airflow around the house, it will fall along outside. The owners may have had a barbecue that day, and it smells bad.
Two Compartment Tank
Anyway, in this two-compartment tank, the effluent flows into the second side, while the solids stay in the first compartment. You can see that we installed a new outlet here, from which the effluent can flow out to the leach lines. You can see all the roots that we pulled out of this tank, which caused the repair. Because of those holes, it allowed the roots to get in and plug things up.
The Repair and Added Leach Lines
After the repair, we added onto the lines, and we used what’s called an infiltrator system in place of the traditional rock and perforated pipe. You can see where we tied onto the end of the existing pipe, there’s the rock and the four-inch perforated pipe. We used these new dome shaped infiltrators to extend the leach lines. The infiltrators sit on the bottom of the trench and provide much more area for the water to go out. We added another 100 feet to give it the correct capacity for this house, which is based upon the bedroom count.
You can see how we make the transition here down to another lower line. Once this line fills up, the effluent will spill down over, and this dam will not allow the water to cross over. Then it spills through that pipe and ties into the next level, which is approximately one to two feet lower. That varies depending on the grade of the terrain. You can see the new line here, let me jump over this ditch… this gets us up to the elevation that we need to properly service the house.
That’s your septic education for today. Hopefully, you don’t have to do this at your own house, but this is the way we do it, which concludes with better results rather than using rock and four-inch pipe. Have a great day.
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