Septic tank maintenance

August 3rd, 2013:

How to keep roots away from drain field lines

This article will cover how to keep roots away from drain field lines. The holidays have come! Every homeowner knows that it is part of the season to decorate the lawn. It is always much more cozy to look at holiday decorations set up on your very own bushes and trees, rather than on artificial metal frames, right? That is why many people opt to have naturally growing plants on their lawns. Thriving gardens are always a welcome sight and they are very necessary elements on your property if you want to incorporate a Nature. In the desire to have trees and shrubs, the septic system often pays the price. The septic is usually affected by the invasive roots of hardwood plants. As you know, plants are living organisms that need a steady and abundant supply of water and nutrients. They are not mobile so they look for the closest sources available. In your property, the easiest to gain access to is your septic system.

The septic system needs to function smoothly to do the job of treating the wastewater that your household produces every single day. The process starts when the wastewater is collected in the septic tank. Here, the anaerobic bacteria break down the solid waste materials so that a clear effluent can flow outwards into the drain field. The drain field has drain field lines that help distribute the effluent so that it can be purified in the soil before it returns to the surrounding environment. The aim of the wastewater treatment is to make the effluent potable by the time it returns to the water table.

When you have plants on your property, you have to consider some things so that you may avoid septic system or drain field failure. You should know how to keep roots away from drain field lines so that your septic can go about handling the wastewater business without any issues. Tree root penetration or invasion is the biggest problem any homeowner could face if this issue is not taken seriously enough. Many trees are not suitable in a property that has limited space. Some trees need to have at least a hundred feet of distance from the drain field lines for them not to cause any blockage or failure. Tree roots are complex systems. They use time to their advantage. They grow gradually until they establish a firm hold onto your drain field lines. Drain field lines have perforations that roots can easily access. Once they are inside the pipelines, they grow deeper, over, and around the system to make sure that they get everything that they need.  Inside the drain field lines, the roots create a mesh that blocks the normal flow of effluent. This makes the raw sewage backup into your home, overflow onto your property, and flood the lawn. As a result, the aerobic bacteria in the drain field die off because the excessive moisture drowns them. Without the aerobic bacteria in the drain field, the biomat will increase in number. They become too abundant that they help clog the system. Eventually, the drain field fails. The damage will set you back thousands of dollars if the root invasion id not addressed properly.

Asking your septic expert about eliminating the roots near, over, or around your drain fields would be a good idea. They know exactly what to do about the problem tree and plant roots. They could manually eliminate the roots by excavating your lawn. They could also use some anti-root chemicals that can eliminate roots and prevent them from getting into your system.

Once you notice slow drainage, slow flushing, septic backups, and flooding in your septic, you should immediately consult your septic expert. You can also consult an arborist so that the trees could be safely replanted away from your drain field lines instead of killing them. It would certainly be nice to have plants on your lawn for the holidays but see to it that it is at a safe distance from your fully functional septic system.