If your home has a septic system, you may worry mostly about the tank and having it pumped on time. However, the drainfield is an important part of the septic system, and it can develop problems and need repairs. You'll want to watch for signs of drainfield issues and call for service before extensive damage is done. Here are things that cause drainfield damage, the signs of trouble, and the types of repairs that can be done.
What Causes A Drainfield To Be Damaged
A septic drainfield consists of a series of trenches with pipes in them that allow wastewater to drain through the soil. If the pipes are damaged, then water can't flow from the septic tank and through the field properly. Pipes can be damaged by tree roots, clogs from septic tank waste, and by cars driving over the field. Another type of damage that can occur is to the soil itself. It might become compacted that wastewater can no longer filter through it, or the trench can grow a film that blocks water from seeping through. When a film grows, it's usually because wastewater flows through the system too fast before solids have a chance to fall into the tank. This is often a result of not conserving water in your home.
How To Spot Drainfield Problems
If wastewater can no longer seep into the soil, it may rise to the top and create soggy areas in your yard. With sewer water on the surface of your lawn, you'll notice a foul odor in the air. The extra nutrients may cause the grass in the area to be very lush and green. A failing drainfield can also affect the septic tank and cause it to back up or clog. Sewage could even back into your house, or you might notice your toilet and drains take a long time to empty.
What Repair Options Are Available
The septic tank drainfield repair company may have limited options when it comes to repairing a drainfield. If the problem is a busted or clogged pipe, the pipe might be repaired or replaced. However, when the problem is with the soil in the drainfield, the only choice may be to dig a new trench. Problems with the soil can sometimes work themselves out in time as the soil dries out, but that could take months, so digging a new drainfield could be the best option for quick repairs.
Since drainfield damage is often costly to repair and it involves digging up your yard, it's important to learn how to care for your septic system properly so you can protect the drainfield and tank. This involves conserving water and not putting trash, grease, and food down the drains. In addition, have the tank pumped out on schedule and call for an inspection if you suspect problems with your septic system.