Are you considering installing a new septic tank? Did you know that not every property or piece of land can have one installed? To determine if it is possible, first you need a soil test.
Soil tests let you determine the most effective location for your septic tank and if you are able to install one. Below, we give the reasons you need soil testing services.
1. To Determine if You Can Actually Have One
Septic tanks use the natural properties of the soil to drain away water. If the soil lets water go too fast, then the waste does not have time to break down. If it is too slow, the tank will eventually fill and overflow.
If you are considering having a septic tank installed, a percolation test is required before you can get a permit for installation. The type of test can vary depending on the type of system you want. Generally, it involves creating a hole, filling this with water, and then testing the time it takes to drain away.
The shape of the hole can change, as can the depth. This is usually anywhere between 5 to 10 feet. If a hole is too shallow, it will not accurately measure how quickly water filters from it, as it is only filtering from the topsoil.
If you fail the test, then unfortunately you are not able to build a traditional septic tank in the area. You may try other areas of land, but generally, you will have to consider other options.
Luckily, there are other options for residential sewage treatment. They are often designed to work in areas of poor or fast drainage, compensating for the soil type on your land.
2. To Determine the Soil Type
Not all soil types are suited for a septic tank. They can lead to ground and surface water pooling and creating contaminants near your home.
Clay soils are extremely compact. They do not let the water run through them easily. Clay also has a tendency to bond with sodium molecules, blocking drainage and resulting in a drain field failure.
Some soil is exactly the opposite. It lets effluence pass through too easily and quickly. This means that your water will not be filtered properly.
This usually occurs with fine, gravelly soil. One method of solving this is to bring other soil to work along with it and thicken it out. A soil test will not only work out the type of soil you have but its consistency.
3. Soil Testing Services To Find The Best Area
Even if you have the correct soil type, you may still need to test for the correct area. One particular part of your land may have a better consistency and be more suited for septic tanks. Because of this, you may need multiple tests to determine a location.
4. To Avoid Soil Degradation
Soil degradation is when the soil reaches a state in which it can no longer be used. This can happen through poor management of urban, agricultural, and industrial uses. However, it can occur naturally as well, through wind and water erosion or natural ground movements.
Restoring soil costs a lot of money and time. It also devalues the land you own. If you do not know how well your land holds or drains the water, it can lead to increased levels of soil degradation. Even though this is not part of the septic tank installation process, many people may choose to have a test done for this reason.
5. To Track Soil Progress
Once you start soil testing, you should begin to keep a record. This will let you plot the development of the soil over time. You may find it is becoming less able to dispose of the effluent waste or passing it through too quickly, and have to call specialist assistance.
Can I Do My Own Test?
It is possible to do your own preliminary tests. All you need to do is dig the hole to the required depth and see how it drains. However, this is a very rough approximation.
If you do decide to do a test yourself, make sure you slope the sides of the pit. This will prevent the collapse of the sidewalls of the hole. It will also allow you to exit easily should you need to do so.
In addition, it will not give you access to the correct certification required by your state authority. A professional service will know how to measure the drainage and have the correct tools to do so. They will also have the machinery to create holes quicker, more efficiently, and safely.
How Often Should I Test Soil?
Local soil testing services and their frequency of use should be determined by your goals. If you are getting a septic tank installed, you need it done before to gain the correct certifications and see if it is possible. After this, you can test when you see a problem arising or feel the ground has changed.
Other people may choose one just to check the quality of their land. People testing may be farmers who depend on soil for their livelihood or someone who just grows crops and plants at home
In both instances, it should be done before any crops or plants are planted. Other than this, at least once a year. It should also be done before any land development or building is set to take place, or being considered on a plot.
Soil Testing Services Near Me
In summary, if you need a new septic tank, soil testing services can not be avoided. You need a perc test to see if it works and to get the legal requirements to build one.
Your first stop should be Klein Excavating and Septic. We can perform the installation of your septic tank from early tests to the final installation. Click here today to arrange a quote, and let us take the hassle from your tank installation.