1. Improper Or Inadequate Installation
Septic systems that have not been installed properly is the number one reason we see for cause of failure. Many installers are either inexperienced with practical design and installation techniques or unfortunately, simply choose to just ignore them.
This inexperience or lack or care is reflected in the overall design including the components, material selection, elevation and backfill procedures.
A few symptoms of an inadequate installation are as follows.
- Slow drain lines inside your home
- Blocked or overflowing septic tank
- Water/Sewage surfacing in your yard
- Contaminated wells
2. Ground Water Entering Tank or Dispersal System
Many septic tanks are installed without waterproof seals at the pipe inlets, outlets and lids. This allows ground water to enter your tank as well as the sewage effluent in your tank to escape it.
Depending on how deep your septic tank is buried can also allow the sewage effluent that escapes to easily contaminate nearby wells or other drinking water supplies.
The geology of the area can also lead to ground water entering your dispersal system. The water can travel unseen along rock ledges and impermeable hard pan soil below the ground surface.
Ground water that enters your dispersal trench causes it to become excessively wet allowing water to bleed out at the ground’s surface.
- Surfacing sewage effluent
- Darker colored (greener grass)
3. Uneven Distribution Of Effluent To Dispersal System
Your dispersal system, typically lateral lines, is often composed of multiple lines. It is common for the effluent to not be distributed equally throughout each of these lines, which can cause one or more of them to be overloaded.
This is often a result of our number one reason, an improper and inadequate installation.
4. Excessive Inflow Of Water
Your septic system can fail if it is subject to an excessive inflow of water.
Here are some real world scenarios…
- Leaking toilet tank flappers
- Air conditioning condenser drains
- Leaking faucets
- Sump pump discharging to septic system
- Water softener discharging to septic system
5. Improper Backfill Procedures
Your septic system may have been installed to near perfection, but if the procedures implemented during the backfilling stage were poorly performed, then you will likely see it fail at some point in the future.
Backfilling is simply our term for filling in the gravel and dirt around the pipes, lines, tank and components. One might assume that adding these materials where they belong is ample to complete the installation. However, adding it with no proper method of compaction leaves your system prone to failure.
The backfilling procedure must be performed with either manual hands on compaction or by means of compaction equipment. We utilize hydraulic operated compaction equipment to ensure the ground doesn’t settle over time and cause your system to fail.
6. Dispersal Lines Plugged With Sludge & Grease
A septic system has components inside that allow it to perform certain tasks such as separating solids from liquid. However, if these components are not installed correctly, whether they are not level or secured properly, then it can lead to failure of your system as well.
One of the biggest issues on this example is the result of solids that will clog the dispersal lines and surrounding soil.
- Slow or no drainage from house to tank
- Overflowing tank
- Overflowing sewer clean-out
- Overflowing basement floor drains
7. Root Infiltration
Tree and plant roots are capable of completely blocking off all flow of effluent to the dispersal field. Shallow rooted trees and plants are more likely to cause this.
Related: You may also want to check out why septic tank pumping may not solve your problem.
If you’re ready to determine the issues you might have with your septic system you can request an evaluation.