Residential properties that aren't connected to a municipal sewer system rely on septic systems for waste disposal. Modern septic systems are made up of many parts that must work together to effectively treat both liquid and solid waste. One of these parts is the drainfield. Liquid waste moves through the septic tank and into the drainfield, where it is filtered through the soil to remove contaminants. A drainfield that isn't functioning properly can create serious problems, so it's critical you know whether you should repair or replace your drainfield when an issue arises.
Why Drainfields Fail
Identifying why your drainfield is failing can be the key to determining if repairs will fix the problem or if you need a new drainfield entirely. Oversaturation and flooding tend to be the most common causes of drainfield failure.
If the soil in the drainfield is too saturated, it cannot properly filter out liquid waste. The result is a drainfield that releases unprocessed waste into the environment. An experienced septic professional will be able to evaluate your drainfield to determine if repairs can be made to restore proper saturation levels or if you will need to install a new drainfield for your septic system.
Signs of Drainfield Failure
Homeowners should be able to identify the warning signs of a failing drainfield. Early recognition of these signs will help you repair your drainfield before it fails completely. You may see pools of water forming on the surface of the soil above your drainfield when failure is imminent. Pooling water occurs when the drainfield isn't properly filtering liquid waste. You may also hear gurgling or bubbling from the drains in your home when the drainfield isn't functioning properly.
One of the most obvious signs of a drainfield problem is the release of foul odors. Unprocessed wastewater can cause your property to smell, and the odor can even waft into your home through your drain system. You should contact a septic professional immediately if you notice any of the warning signs of drainfield failure.
Repair vs. Replacement
An experienced septic professional can inspect your septic system for signs of damage when your drainfield fails. The pipes that run throughout the drainfield can become crushed, causing improper filtration. Repairing these pipes can restore the function of your septic system.
It's important to work closely with your septic technician to weigh the cost of repairs against the cost of drainfield replacement so that you can make an informed decision. Reach out to a professional to see if you need septic tank drainfield repair.