A drainfield is an important component of your home’s septic system. The drainfield is responsible for distributing the waste water (effluent) that accumulates in your septic tank and allowing it to filter back into the soil. In this article, we look at the most common types of residential drainfields, as well as some of the signs your system may need repair.
The best way to minimize the disruption to your home is to catch minor problems before they become serious. Knowing the signs of a failing drain field can mean the difference between a small repair and a major overhaul of your septic system.
Contact Miami Dade Septic if you notice any of the following:
Drain field problems can be more accurately diagnosed with a septic inspection.
Any of the following signs may indicate that a septic problem is specific to the drainage field and not caused by any other issue:
Gravity drainfield: Gravity systems are the most common variety of residential drainfield. They work by allowing the effluent to flow down a series of gravel-filled trenches and filter through the soil before returning to water table. Gravity systems are most effective in areas with dry, permeable soil.
Pressure distribution drainfield:
For lots where a gravity drainfield isn’t effective, usually due to the septic tank being positioned below the home’s outlet pipe — a pressure distribution drainfield is the most common alternative. The system works the same as a gravity drainfield, but adds a pump to manually move the effluent through the drainage trenches.
Mound system :
A mound system is a specialized type of pressure distribution drainfield constructed in homes with a high water table. In it, an artificial drainfield is built above the ground, ensuring the effluent has enough space to filter properly.
Aerobic treatment unit (ATU):
An ATU speeds up drainfield efficiency by promoting the growth of aerobic bacteria, which processes sewage much faster than naturally occurring anaerobic species.Cesspool: Cesspools (or cesspits) are often found in older homes. Less efficient than drainfields, they work by allowing effluent to seep out of a single holding chamber and into the ground.
A drywell (or seepage pit) is similar to a cesspool but adds an extra layer of crushed rock around the holding chamber to increase absorption.Holding tank: In some situations, non-permeable holding tanks are used for temporary storage of sewage effluent.