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Local Articles in Webster

Septic tank

How To Maintain a Septic System

A contractor describes how to properly maintain your septic system and drain field. Here are five tips to help.

man flushing septic system

Septic Systems

Septic systems are commonly used in rural areas and sometimes in areas not served by a municipal sewage system. Septic systems absorb household sewage and distribute the liquid waste into a designated leach field where natural processes can reclaim it. However, solid wastes and grease must be pumped out of the septic system periodically.

landscaping around septic system (Photo by Brandon Smith)

Don’t compromise your septic system while trying to spruce up your landscaping.

septic tank system

You’re looking to buy a home with a septic system, which you’ve never had before — so what do you do now?

professional septic tank pumper cleaning residential tank

Follow these safety precautions when working on or near your septic system.

septic tank distribution box (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)

Do you believe these septic tank suburban legends?

Angie's Answers

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In almost all areas, you have to get a permit from the county or city to rebuild a septic tank or leach field - permit cost typically $150-600, though can reach $2000 in some areas for a new installation. The reason is they will then come out and inspect the installation and review the test results from the civil engineer, from whom a design and soil percolation test and construction inspection report will be required before they issue an operating permit.

If you have a question on the process, the county or city most likely has a permit requirements info sheet on their website describing the process and requirements - googel your locale name combined with a search phrase like this - leach field test

The real reason a permit is required is to be sure an engineer designs the field, that the leach field is designed to match the existing soil conditions, and that it is built to the design so hopefully it will neither break through to the surface, contaminate the groundwater, nor contaminate nearby wells or waterways, thereby creating a public nuisance and health hazard.

The reason for the initial presale infiltration capacity test you had done is to provide some assurance to the buyer that the system is likely to work as needed, at least for the forseeable future, and is based on the number of bedrooms and sometimes number of bathrooms in the house as the basis for estimating the "load" the system is likely to see. There are different tests in different locales - some use a minimal criteria of 3 or 4 gpm flow for 20 minutes, other use the more common design guide of 150gpd (gallons per day) per bedroom in the house- some prorated for a 1 hour period, some far more strict by requiring a 24 hour test. 300 gallons in 45 minutes is an extremely stringent criteria - I would check with the buyilding department that this is right, because this adds up to a rate of 9600 gallon sper day - of about 64 bedrooms worth of capacity ! I am sure I have never ever seen that strict a criteria for a residential (as opposed to resort/ hotel/ commercial) septic system, so I would check that the tester did not somewhere add a zero to the volume to be pumped or something.

Also, returning water is not a viable basis for failing the test - the proper way to conduct a test is to pump the specified amount of water, and verify that the water level at the discharge pipe has returned to the original level by the end of the specified time - usually to the invert (bottom) of the pipe, but generally a conditional or "warning" approval will be given to one that does not raise the water table above the top of the 4" discharge pipe during the test time. You might discuss this with the civil engineer before going ahead with a new leach field construction - to me it sounds like the test may have been rigged to fail,, because in-service leach fields would not take 300 gallons of water without raising the water level to the top of the pipe for a period, even though they could take that flow for an extended period ot time.

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I would guess that the wrong term was used to describe your problem. What was probably meant was that the leach field was saturated. This is to say that the soil around your leach field is saturated with solids from the septic tank and you may have to have it replaced. If you do not have the tank pumped often enough this can happen as well as just aging of the system. Many people ignore the septic till there is a problem do to out of sight out of mind or the false belief they are saving money. If you have a large family you may have to have the tank pumped every 2 or three years. Some of the towns around here have passed laws to that effect to avoid such problems.

 

Don

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There should be no growth other than grass on your leach field - for brush, bushes or trees use the kill-all Roundup herbicide to kill off the entire plant. For roots intruding from outside the leach field, use a root killer like RootX once or twice a year - I would do two treatments a month apart initially if you have root problems. Unfortunately, just killing the roots is not going to solve the problem you currently have, because they decay extremely slowly or not at all in a leach field due to the saturated and greasy conditions - they are almost embalmed in the sludge. If you have a significant problem, you may have to kill them, then get them routed out. This can be a $500-1000 job depending on how your field is designed and how accessible the inlets of the field distribution pipes are.

Septic Tank Services in Webster, MA

Companies below are listed in alphabetical order. To view top rated service providers along with reviews and ratings, Join Angie's List Now!

911 Restoration

20 Blaine Street

ABS DRAIN

9 ESSEX ST
Lynn

Adams Street Plumbing

272 Adams St.
Boston

ADC Septic

Blackstone

ADH CONTRACTING INC

161 E GROVE ST
Middleboro

All in one drain cleaning

85 Worcester Rd
Webster

All In One Drain Cleaning

85 Worcester Rd
Webster

ALLBUILDERSERVICES

PO BOX 376
Lynnfield

Antanavica Construction Co

208 Pine St.
Leicester

B.C. Building Company

98 North Street
Medfield

Barrows Contracting Inc.

37 North Street
Upton

Blue Hill Plumbing

1049 Blue Hill Ave.
Boston

BP Plumbing and Heating

209 Boston Post Rd
Sudbury

Construction Specialties, LLC.

9 Poplar Street
Worcester

Corey Street Plumbing

113 Corey St
West Roxbury

Crane's Property Maintenance

405 Groveland St
Haverhill

D F Clark Inc

22 Mitchell Rd
Ipswich

D.P. Mercurio & Son Construction

206 Lancaster Street
West Boylston

DC Contractors Inc.

243 Bridge Street
Raynham

G NICHOLS CONSTRUCTION INC

146 Central St
Acton

G.S. Redlon & Sons, Inc.

3 Shaw Street
Middleboro

Gary C Flaherty

335 Broad Street

Gem Plumbing & Heating

1 Wellington Rd

GRADY CONSULTING LLC

71 Evergreen Street
Kingston

Grand Plumbing

Dorchester

Group Work Design Build

7 Windsor Dr
Plymouth

Gulla Landscape Inc

467 Washington St
Norwood

Hamma Construction Co

P.O. Box 1266
Framingham

Hancock Street Plumbing

981 Hancock St
Quincy

Hancock Street Sewer and Drain

1070 Hancock St
Quincy

Harborside Drive Plumbing

101 Harborside Dr.
Boston

Hardy Engineering

1287 Washington Street
East Weymouth

Huntington LLC

40 Providence St
Millbury

J & C Project Services

190 Whipple Road
Tewksbury

J G Schmidt Inc

149 E Union St
Ashland

J White Contracting Inc

3 Murray Hill Ln
Andover

J.P. Farrell Construction Inc.

40 Cross Street
Ashland

JDD Remodeling

10 Central Ave
Burlington

Johnson Services LLC

75 cook st
Boylston

Joseph Berthiaume & Sons

510 Stafford St
Charlton

Just Call Me LLC

177 River Rd
Uxbridge

Kerr Place Plumbing and Heating

1 Kerr Pl
Roxbury Crossing

Kiernan Road Plumbing

17 Kiernan Rd
West Roxbury

Knowles Construction Co., Inc

20 Dean Street
Norfolk

Lamartine Plumbing

97 Lamartine St
Jamaica Plain

Lyall Street Plumbing

95 Lyall St
West Roxbury

Lyon General Contracting

250 Bent St
Franklin

M F REYNOLDS INC

125 E ALBION ST
Medford

Medford Sewer & Drain

144 Mystic Ave.
Medford

Miller Environmental

608 Spring Street
East Bridgewater

MJD Excavating Inc

147 Horbine Rd
Rehoboth

Muzzi Drain Cleaning

49 Rockland St
Hingham

MV Plumbing

Everett

NPM Inc

400 B Lake Ave
Worchester

NVP Plumbing & Heating

197 Neponset Valley Pkwy.
Hyde Park

Paul G Jenner Associates Inc

31 Riley Ave
East Weymouth

Peabody Emergency Plumbing

121 Lynn St
Peabody

Peabody Sewer and Drain

8 Rita Rd
Peabody

Penn Street Plumbing

85 Penn St
Quincy

Presidential Way Plumbing

120 Presidential Way
Woburn

R. Moreshead Excavating

98 Central St
Foxboro

RAPID FLOW DRAIN CLEANING

PO BOX 499
Revere

RAPID ROOTER

3 Surrey Cir
Woburn

Saugus Sewer Service

160 Broadway.
Saugus

SB Plumbing Experts

544 Dorchester Ave
Boston

Seelig Services

108 Old Southbridge Road
Dudley

Servpro Industries Inc

P.O. Box 44
Bedford

Sherman Home Inspections, Inc.

263 Plymouth St
Middleboro

Sherman Inspection, Inc.

97 Stanley Street
North Attleboro

Sherwood Sewer and Drain

20 Sherwood St
Roslindale

Stone Street Plumbing

55 Stone St
Walpole

Stoneham Plumbing

29 Landers Rd
Stoneham

Stonley Sewer and Drain

76 Stonley Rd
Jamaica Plain

Stoughton Plumbing and Heating

757 Pleasant St
Stoughton

Sunset Hill Design

67 Mountain Road

SW Plumbing Heating and Cooling

35 Royden Rd
South Weymouth

Tankaway

2 Shawsheen Rd
Boston

TCD Contracting Inc

1009 Chandler St
Tewksbury

Tileston St Plumbing

21 Tileston St
Everett

TROOPER SIDING, INC.

1 Juna Way
Franklin

Williams & Sparages LLC

189 North Main Street
Middleton

Wind River Environmental

190 Washington Street
Abington

WR Plumbing Experts

64 Laurie Ave
West Roxbury

WR Sewer and Drain

743 W Roxbury Pkwy
West Roxbury

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