septic repair – Sutton, MA
The repair of a septic system can present many difficulties. This particular project in Sutton was indeed a tricky one. Typically, the first step is to perform soil tests called deep holes and perc tests (short for percolation tests). At Land Planning, Inc. we have a slightly different approach to septic designs particularly for repairs. We start the job with a land survey. We survey the Property lines, structures, topography, any surrounding wetlands, neighboring wells, and any ledge or other obstacles that will affect the septic design. Also, in the case of a repair we locate the existing failed cesspool/septic system. We plot up all of this data into a Drawing file. We look online for other supporting data such as wetlands, watershed districts, endangered species areas, and most important the soil map of the area. Armed with this information we decide on the ideal place to perform the percolation tests. The logic of this method is to avoid expensive, unsightly, mounded septic systems and to avoid having to dig again and again in different locations because the soil tests were done in the wrong place. Most companies will perform all of the above services for a septic repair after they perform the soil tests; this can lead to unnecessary pumps, extra fill and and large mounds that can greatly detract from the beauty of your land. Also, they may not be licensed to certify the location of property lines and wetlands forcing you to hire extra Professionals if you r project is near these features.
This Particular septic repair had many challenges involved. From a glance it seamed this septic system would be easy to design. It was a house surrounded by a farm field. Our survey field crew quickly realized that the lot was surrounded by a protected wet meadow and various protected intermittent streams. According to the soils map online the soil in the area did not drain well, which is apparent in the wetlands found in the abutting field. Most likely the septic system would have to be built in fill and if we perked at a high elevation it would need a pump and lead to an unsightly mounded design. If we perked to close to the wetlands, Conservation would deny the project. We decided that if we tested at a specific location it would be just low enough for a gravity system and just far enough from the wetlands for approval by the Sutton conservation commission. As it turned out the soil drained at 30 minutes per inch (very slow) and the seasonal high water table was 30″ below grade, (very high). However, because we tested in the right place we were still able to just barely get a gravity septic system that worked with the existing plumbing. Also, it allowed us to just barely have enough separation from the wetlands that got us an approval from the conservation commission. In the above photos you can see how much fill was used in the back yard of the house. The grade from the back door does go just slightly down hill away from the house and the steeper sloped sides of the fill take you pretty much right to the property lines. In essence the mounded septic is blended in and creates a fairly level back yard. We were even able to maintain the walkout basement on one side of the house with a plastic membrane barrier. The sale of the house, which had been held up for the septic failure, went through without a delay and both parties were very happy with the final product. If you have a similar situation and you would like to receive a free estimate please see our contact page or call us at 508-839-9526