You also can’t afford to take your plumbing and septic systems for granted. Once you turn on that tap or flush something down the drain, you have responsibility for where it all ends up. Homeowners in the city don’t pay much attention to their sewage system; after all, if something goes awry, they just contact their municipality. That’s not the case for a rural homeowner.
Unlike urban homes, most country homes have their own septic systems. They may be modest or large, old or new—but each one has to be installed properly in order to work well.
If you need a new installation or just want to know how your current system works, read on.
The Design Phase
Before any property owner installs a new septic system, he or she needs to know more about the design. Will it be adequate for the expected daily output? How does the soil condition affect placement?
To ensure a good design, talk with your plumber about your current water output. You need to know for certain that your tank size can accommodate your usage patterns. Consider your family size, garden or farming needs, and any other factor that impacts water use.
You also need to choose your location wisely. Have the soil analyzed before you start; otherwise, you may not understand its limits and have seepage problems later. For instance, your soil may not drain well. Likewise, if the water table is too high where you want to dig, you’ll need a better location. Ask your installer for advice.
Once you understand your limits, you’ll know which type of system works best for your circumstances. At this point, your plumbing professionals can begin the installation.
Once your certified installer has a private permit in hand, it’s time to dig.
By this stage, the preliminaries are taken care of, so your property will be marked well. These markings help the pros avoid digging in the wrong places (for example, they know to stay 15–30 metres from surface ponds or private wells).
The backhoe operator begins by excavating the area where the septic tank will go. Once he or she has this done, it may be time to dig a separate pit for an overflow tank, if your area requires this. Once the hole reaches the right depth, the plumbing crew makes sure the earth at the bottom is firm enough so it won’t settle later.
Next, workers insert the septic tank itself—or its lower half. Once it’s in position, the crew aligns the top half of the tank over the lower portion, checking for a secure seal.
Now it’s time to dig the trenches. These are channels that make up what’s known as a drain field. The number and length of trenches depend on the system’s design and your property size. Once the professionals finish digging all the trenches to the proper depth, they attach overflow pipes to the holding tanks, and then they lower those pipes into the trenches.
As part of this process, workers also insert a specialized mesh medium into each trench. This material makes up an important part of the septic field, as it facilitates proper drainage. All the drain field components work together to eliminate any environmental or health concerns when waste water enters the area.
Once the crew properly inspects all open areas, they can fill in the trenches. During this process, workers use caution to avoid damaging pipes.
After the plumbing team has finished the entire installation, they’ll want to set up a future maintenance plan with you. This matters just as much as the installation itself.
To keep your new system working properly, make a plan to have your system inspected every three years (minimum). Depending on your system design and other environmental factors, you may need an inspection more or less often.
It’s not unusual to schedule a follow-up even before your first three years have run their course. Take note of any concerns you have, and if something doesn’t seem right, don’t hesitate to call your installer.
Once your periodic system inspection arrives, your certified plumber will locate your system, clear off the access points, test the system by flushing toilets and turning on faucets, and check for system problems. The pros will also measure tank scum and look for possible leaks. Every so often, they will pump your septic tank.
At the end of each maintenance visit, you’ll receive a service report that outlines any changes or points of concern. If the system needs repair, your plumber may do it right away or make a later appointment.
Now that you understand the basic installation process for your new septic system, you’ll be better prepared once you need to replace your current system or install a new one.
For further questions, contact your professional installer. Then check our blog again soon for more helpful plumbing and heating tips.