Causes of Drain Field Problems and Repair Costs

Problems with septic tanks or drain fields can be pretty messy for most owners. Some of them overlook their drainage systems because these are things that they don’t see daily. You can read more about drain fields on this site here.

However, most systems will malfunction at some point. But most homeowners only realize the problem after their sewage starts to emit odors, and the smell begins to come out in the open. Older systems will not have any warnings other than the toilet is starting to become inefficient. Flushing may become a battle, and you realize that the sewage water is coming out at the back of your home.

There are newer systems that were installed with codes. These are often high-water alarm systems that will warn the homeowners that there’s water in their garage or backyard. But if the flood comes from the septic tank, then this is a problem that needs to be quickly addressed. A repair from the right company can prevent the problem from turning into a full-blown one, and the components of the septic system can be fixed as soon as possible.

Saturated Drain Fields and Overloaded Tanks

The troubles may start early when the snow is beginning to melt in colder areas. The strong odors that you may be smelling from your rooms are just signs that there are failing components in your sewage system.

Field failures often occur when the ground reaches its maximum saturation point. The additional groundwater from snow or rain will force sewage water to the surface, which will cause foul odors.

One of the efficient ways to prevent this scenario from happening is to make sure that you rest your field area during the months where it is the most overstressed. Most companies offer drain field repairs to ensure that the ground where your septic tank is located will not be oversaturated in spring. If there’s already a malfunction, it is helpful if you can get a complete assessment of the system and remedy specific areas to avoid future problems.

Additional Family Members May Mean Bigger Tanks

When a property changes hands to a family with more members, or another person decides to live in the house, the tank may not be able to handle the additional load. This is because most of the properties may have implemented designs according to the initial number of family members. 

Other reasons why there is a system failure in your drainage are dishwashing and laundry machines. Most cycles of washing can consume about 2,000L of water. When you do multiple loads in a single day, this can overload your tank and make the fields around it oversaturated. You need to spread the volume over the next few weeks to give the water a chance to evaporate.

Is It Time for Repair?

You may have already done all you can, but the stench is still reaching the interior of your house. What you can do is to contact an expert that can inspect your area. You need to tell them your concerns or how the system works to have a good idea of what to check. They can also help you with replacements and other work that needs to be done so that you won’t have problems with your drainage system in the future.

The Older Septic Systems May Not Have Certifications

Most often, only the homeowners themselves are the ones that built septic tanks in their houses. They might not have any idea about hydraulic conductivity or the process of the water traveling through the soil. You can get more idea about hydraulic conductivity in this link: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/earth-and-planetary-sciences/hydraulic-conductivity.

If there are large soil pores in an area, it will be easier for them to absorb water than the clay loams. As the water begins to dry out through evaporation, those who were in larger pores evaporate first. One of the most common bases for system malfunctions is that the type of system is not appropriate to a certain area’s soil.

This is not to say that you have to replace your entire system if it’s in the wrong soil type or if it begins to malfunction. What you can do is to do the replacement on a certain field area or do remediation to the location that has an issue. Most of the time, an expert will have to fix the network piping or do component repairs to make the drainage functional again.

How Much is Cost for Repairs?

Many homeowners may want to know the cost of a septic repair. But this is sometimes a difficult question to answer. This is because there are a lot of factors involved. Some of the things that you need to consider are the volume of the tank, its age, and the type of soil where it is located.

If there’s a need for drilled wells or a water body that is considered a setback, then the company may require additional fees. If they have to dig more room to accommodate the new system in the case of replacements, you will also need to be ready for extra expenses.

However, this is an investment that is worth it. Sometimes, a 3-bedroom that needs a gravity-specific system with sandy soil can range from $12,000 to $15,000. An additional thousand may apply if there’s an extra bedroom. 

If your place has restrictive soils such as floodplains and bedrocks, know that there might be tight regulations concerning them. Other companies are careful that wastewater doesn’t go into larger bodies such as rivers, aquifers, lakes, streams, and other areas to better protect the environment and its natural resources. 

Some of the costs may involve the treatment of wastewater whenever necessary. A quick consultation may be required to know some estimates. The prices may depend on factors like site challenges, different technologies used, and other restrictive elements upon working on the drain field. 

What you need is a company that knows how to locate the root of the problem, and they should be able to provide you with a quick fix. They can tell you about the things that are needed to be done on-site after the inspection. When they are finished with the job, the foul odors’ problem should not be an issue anymore.

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