Where Should a Septic Tank Be Installed on My Property?

December 30, 2021 Published by Leave your thoughts

What’s the best location for your septic tank? While there’s no specific recommended site for any given parcel of land, there are some simple rules for septic system placement. You might be limited by geographic features or local building codes, but the ultimate goal is to make sure that the tank and drain field are in an area that won’t interfere with your health and safety.

Here’s a quick guide to proper septic system placement to help ensure the successful installation and function of your system.

Soil quality and geographical features

When you rely on a drain field to treat wastewater and release it back into the groundwater supply, soil quality is important.

Before installation, your septic contractor will likely test the soil to determine its suitability. You need soil that is dense enough to keep the tank from shifting but not so dense that effluent cannot drain back into the groundwater supply. Loose and rocky soil may cause the tank to shift and the water to drain too quickly, while hard clay soil makes it difficult for the water to penetrate the dirt. Many properties have different types of soil within one parcel, so that may help you find a better location.

Geographical features matter, too. You wouldn’t want to place your septic tank uphill from your home. This makes it very difficult for the effluent to move from your plumbing to the septic tank. Similarly, if you’re building a home on the edge of a cliff, placement can be more challenging.

Proximity to building

Generally, septic tanks should be close to the building they serve—no more than 10 feet away if possible. As noted above, however, this isn’t always possible. Depending on geographical features, existing buildings and where you plan to construct your home, your septic tank may be farther away than normally recommended. Your contractor should have plenty of suggestions to install an efficient and appropriately-located septic system.

Drain field considerations

Finally, don’t forget to take the drain field into consideration. The best location for a septic tank factors in the drain field location, too. Just as placing a septic tank downhill from your home allows gravity to move the wastewater into the tank, placing the drain field downhill from the tank allows for easier effluent movement; therefore, you should look for a good drain field location at the same time you decide where to place the septic tank.

Drain fields also need to be a safe distance away from your property, where children and animals may potentially play. When the water leaches out into the drain field, it hasn’t been fully treated. This presents a health hazard. It should also be far away from anywhere you may drive or park your vehicles, since that can damage the tank and pipes.

Septic system placement is an art not a science. That’s why it’s important to work with experienced septic contractors. Get in touch with Cleveland Septic today to learn more about our services and get started.

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