often observe water falling back into septic tanks from the
field as the level is pumped down. This is an important sign
of soil failure. It is obvious that the problem does not originate
in the tank, but in the drainfield. Puddles of water appearing
on the surface of the drain field are a good indication that
the soil is flooded and the drain field is failing.
not always easy to diagnose the cause of backups. A recent
issue of the EPA newsletter Pipeline lists signs of failure
as "slowly draining sinks and toilets, gurgling sounds
in the plumbing, plumbing backups, sewage odors in the house,
or tests showing the presence of bacteria in well water."
Clay soil and sodium
of sodium in wastewater can turn clay bearing soil into hardpan,
which will not allow water to pass through it.
can I tell if I have clay soil?
A. Clay soils are made up of tiny particles that cling together
and subsequently cling well to water. To help determine how
much of your soil is clay you can simply take a handful of
your soil and try to squeeze it together. Once squeezed, release
your fingers and see if the soil is still in a ball. The more
clay it has, the more solid and less-brittle it will appear.
Although it is not unique to any one place, you can usually
find an abundance of clay soil in the southeast portions of
HERE for detailed information on the effects of sodium on
Grease and Sludge
layer called the biomat forms near the surface and around
the inner walls of the drain field. This biomat is made up
of organic material which is home to billions of microbes
and naturally ocurring bacteria. When the biomat grows too
dense is can form a waterproof barrier and prevent wastewater
from being absorbed into the soil.
absorption stops, soils flood. Water backs up into the tank
and into household plumbing.
often the first sign of soil failure in your septic system.
SEEP helps solve two key problems which result in
septic system failure...
releases sodium bonded clay and reopens soil, restoring passage
of air and water through the drain field soil.
disperses greases and scums, and penetrates the biomat which
clogs soil passages.
dissolves fat, oil grease, hair, paper and other matter that
clogs soil pores.
Broken or crushed drain pipes
are built on small lots where there is not enough room to
properly install an on-site septic system. It is never recommended
to install tanks, drainpipe, or drain fields under an area
where vehicles travel. The weight of vehicle traffic can compress
soil, and crush plastic, or, in older systems, clay drain
built in the early 1940s used sewage pipe called Orangeberg.
This pipe was made of paper and tar, and will eventually fail.
If your home still has this type of pipe in the septic system
it should be replaced.
Waste solids escaping septic tank
tanks must have waste solids removed by licensed pumping service
companies every 3 - 5 years depending on use.
build up through neglect, or overuse, they can overflow into
the drain field system, and clog drain pipes and soil. When
this condition is present, it is often possible to restore
normal functioning by having the pipes cleaned with high pressure
streams of water. This is commonly known as hydro-jet cleaning,
and it can be performed by most licensed septic system maintenance
companies. Once the hydro-jetting is done, have the tank pumped,
then apply a full shock treatment (4 gallons) of Septic Seep
directly to the drain field. Follow this with a treatment
of Mega-Bio™ dissolvable industrial-strength bacteria
never a good idea to plant trees, or shrubs near, or over
a drain field. You will notice that shrubbery near your drain
field is larger and more robust than similar plants in other
areas farther away. This is due to the additional moisture
and nutrients the plants near the drain field are able to
reach by extending their roots into drain field soil, and
eventually into drain pipes.
can be remedied in 2 ways: mechanical removal with a rotating
rooter machine, or chemical removal using one of several root
killers commonly found on hardware and plumbing store shelves.