If you’re building a new home, it’s important to know what type of septic system the property will use. A typical tank holds five or six thousand gallons and is typically set up ten feet below ground level. The construction process for most tanks starts by digging a hole in an area away from lakes, streams and wetlands – but many people are still surprised how deep they actually go.
The “how to find septic tank cleanout” is a question that has been asked many times. The answer of how deep the septic tanks are buried will vary, but most people should be able to find it with some digging.
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Septic tanks might become a need in more remote places where certain services aren’t readily accessible or available. After all, we need contemporary conveniences like adequate plumbing to live comfortably.
However, the depth to which septic tanks are buried remains an issue. Knowing where your septic tank is located, as well as what may be grown near or on top of it, can help you determine how much of your yard is suitable for regular gardening.
You Might Not Be Aware
Knowing how deep the septic tank is buried might be a mystery, despite the fact that it seems like something a homeowner should be aware of. Perhaps you forgot about the septic tank after it was installed years ago, or you’re moving into a house that already has one.
Whatever the situation may be, determining the depth of your septic tank might be tough under the conditions, particularly if you don’t know where the lids are located.
Most septic tanks may be placed anywhere from four inches to four feet underground, according to the usual rule of thumb.
How to Find the Location of Your Septic Tank
Maybe you’re looking for your septic tank because you’re not sure where it is on your property. There are a few simple techniques to discover out where your tank is without having to go through a lengthy process.
The first option is to follow your sewage lines. The tank and drain field are usually built parallel to the sewage line that runs from your house.
You may even be able to find a four-inch sewage line that exits your home in the crawl area or basement. This should guide you to the septic tank if you discover it.
Follow the pipe all the way across the yard, checking every few feet to be sure you’re still on the right track. Septic tanks must be at least five feet from the home, as stated above, but most are in the 10- to 25-foot range.
If you don’t feel like digging around in your yard, you may always look for your house’s county records. Most counties will keep track of any construction permits, which would include any septic system installations on your property.
This should include schematics with measurements and even the exact place where the septic tank is located. Not only will this help you locate your septic tank, but it will also offer you a better picture of the layout of your unique piece of property.
You may also dig up your lid. To get an as-built drawing, contact your municipality. This is the number of lids on your septic tank that will be shown. It might be two or three lids, depending on the arrangement. The majority of septic tanks are rectangular and measure about 5′ x 8′ in size.
Mark the perimeter with a metal probe after locating the boundaries. If you can’t detect the position of your septic tank using a probe, you’ll have to dig a shallow trench around the perimeter with a shovel to finally reach the lid.
If you’ve just acquired a home and know there’s a septic tank on the property, but aren’t sure where it is, you’ll need to identify it.
First, look for visual cues. You should be able to observe septic tank risers or clean-out ports sticking above earth. This will immediately reveal the location of the subterranean tank.
However, if you can’t locate any visual cues, you may make some educated assumptions. Examine the pipes in your building as well as the overall state of the property to get a good indication of where the tank is.
If you can see the cleanout or the risers, examine them to make sure everything is operating correctly. If your tank is filled to its typical level, it will only be a few inches below the underside of the tank cover.
The top surface of the lid may vary depending on whether it is constructed of plastic, fiberglass, or steel.
What Is the Best Place for a Septic Tank?
If you don’t already have a septic tank on your property but want to install one, it’s crucial to understand where it should go. Most septic tanks will be between 10 and 25 feet away from the house.
Please remember that septic tanks cannot and should not be located within five feet of your house. You may use a probe to strike for flat concrete if you’re looking for a tank that’s already been put on a property you’ve just purchased. This will show you where the tank is located.
Planting on the Roof of a Septic Tank
While it may not seem to be the finest idea in the world, planting over a sewage tank may really be perfectly acceptable if the proper vegetation is grown. It’s not only acceptable, but it may even be advantageous depending on what you produce.
The appropriate kind of vegetation may assist minimize tank erosion and even absorb some of the additional rainwater that might accumulate in your drain field. If you want to signal and cover the location where the tank is situated, you may simply grow tall grass over that piece of land.
Grasses and perennials are the finest plants to grow around your drain field and septic tank, as previously stated. This is because to their shallow root systems, which will not obstruct or harm the tank’s subsurface infrastructure.
You may also go with non-woody ground coverings for the same purpose. You may do your own research on non-woody ground coverings since there are so many possibilities available. Consider the expanding environment.
If your septic tank is in a sunny location, this is definitely the greatest option for sun-loving perennials. If you don’t have enough sunshine, a shade garden plant can be a better option. Remember that these plants will only thrive under ideal circumstances.
Keep in mind that the soil around the septic tank drain field is likely to be wetter than normal. In other cases, it may even be saltier, or both.
Make sure you cover all of those bases when planting by using a perennial like a hollyhock, wild violet, or bee balm, which are all more tolerant of salty, moist conditions.
The presence of a septic system underneath these plants does not guarantee that deer will avoid the area. If you don’t want deer to invade your yard, try planting deer-resistant perennials. Something that the deer don’t ordinarily eat, such as a spring bulb or attractive grass.
You Don’t Want to Grow These Plants
Just because you can plant over your sewage tank doesn’t imply you can utilize it for anything. Large, fast-growing trees are among the plants you should avoid putting over your septic tank.
On the same point, shrubs and trees with aggressive root systems are some of the worst plants. These roots will spread out in quest of water, regardless of where it is found. Finding a source of water in the pipes of your septic tank drain field is one option.
When those roots begin to encroach on your septic drain field, your septic tank may suffer significant harm. Repairs are inconvenient to deal with, and even then, they may not be sufficient. It’s possible that you’ll need a complete replacement.
Pussywillow bushes, weeping willow shrubs, birch, beech, elm, maple, American sweetgum, tulip, and ash trees should all be avoided. Others have vigorous root systems that you should avoid planting near your septic tank or drain field.
What Your Septic System Is and How It Works
Knowing What Your Septic System Is and How It Works can give you a greater appreciation for how to manage, maintain, and care for it. Otherwise, it is just a big tank in the ground that collects your waste (which is true, but still).
There may be a paucity of sewage infrastructure in rural locations. Because not every rural location is the same, there’s no certainty that septic systems will be required in yours. In any case, the septic tank acts as a wastewater treatment facility when there are no sewer lines in place.
All of the wastewater from your showers, toilets, sinks, and washing machine is piped out of your house and dumped in that subterranean septic tank. The tank is designed to keep your wastewater from leaching into the ground by being waterproof.
The tank is truly sophisticated enough to separate particles (or sludge) and scum from liquid waste. Solids sink to the bottom, scum rises to the top, and liquids sit in the center, sandwiched between the two levels.
The liquids will finally exit the septic tank via a T-shaped baffle pipe. The wastewater from your home is the cause for the departure.
The baffle is set up so that only liquids, not solids, may pass through this particular pipe. This liquid is pumped out of the pipe and into a bigger section of your septic system. This is the drain field, also known as the leach field.
Your drain is usually made up of a series of perforated PVC pipes that are buried in a trench. For durability and longevity, these ditches are filled with gravel or crushed stone, however you may cover the drains with a drain field cloth to prevent debris from getting into the drains.
The perforated drains allow the wastewater to flow out into the crushed gravel or stone, and ultimately into the soil. Before it reaches the groundwater, the wastewater will gently float through the soil, eradicating the majority of the hazardous bacteria contained in the waste.
Unless you do anything to stop the flow out of the pipes, any surplus moisture in the soil is taken care of by natural evaporation.
You should hire a septic service to come out every three years or so and pump the scum and sludge out of your septic tank, thereby cleaning it and restoring it to its former condition.
How to Layout a Septic System
The tank is just one piece of the puzzle. You’ll also need a drain field to catch all of that liquid waste. When it comes to planting around your septic tank, the drain pipes are the most important consideration.
The last thing you want is for those invasive roots to infiltrate your septic system and cause harm to your pipes. This may prevent your septic tank from emptying correctly and potentially put your groundwater at risk.
It’s a good rule of thumb to perform as little gardening as possible near your septic tank. Use annuals like impatiens, which have shallow roots and need minimal maintenance. The one exception is that they must be planted year, so keep that in mind.
When gardening near your septic tank, there are three things you should avoid. The first step is to fill the septic drain field with earth. The second is overcrowding that area with mulch. The third issue is that you may be overwatering your plants.
All three of these things may impair your drain field’s capacity to dissipate properly.
If you have an old house, the septic tank may be buried. To find it, dig a small hole in the ground around the area that you are looking for. If there is no soil on top of the septic tank, then there should be a pipe sticking out of the ground near where you found the hole. Reference: how to find septic tank in old house.
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