septic problem

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Hi everyone, We had the septic tank pumped six months ago when we bought this house, because it was full and backing up into the house. Everything was fine up until Easter Sunday when we had over six inches of rain around here and our yard was pretty much under water for awhile. Whenever we flushed the toilet or ran any water in the house, we could see water bubbling out of the ground approximately 18 inches away from the septic tank's clean-out pipe. Just yesterday we paid someone 250 bucks (if anyone reading this is in middle Georgia, does that sound excessive or about right?) to come take a look and he pumped it out, saying that the leach field had become saturated which caused the rain water to back into the septic tank. When the tank was full, the water began seeping out of the top of the tank. He said that once the tank was emptied, water started flowing back into it from the saturated leach field, but that it should be ok. Well it just finished raining again - not a tremendous amount, it rained heavily for a bit, but the ground was still pretty wet from Sunday so there is standing water all over the place once again and water is bubbling up from above my septic tank when we flush or run water. I'm wondering why the water bubbles out of the ground just above the tank instead of backing up into the house if the tank is full? Does it sound like our septic guy was right in his assessment of the situation? Remember, Sunday's rain was well above any normal rainfall amounts. School in our county was closed the following day due to flooded out roads and a few coffins in a nearby burial plot were unearthed. Any opinions and comments are appreciated. Gayle
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gnb wrote:

<SNIP>
Instead of calling the septic guy, you should have been calling the attorney guy.
It's hard to believe that the sellers did not know of this condition, but failed to disclose it in the contract. (IMHO)
Jim
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Speedy Jim wrote:

house,
fine
here
water
septic
is
come
septic
I don't know, to hear the old guys around here talk, they haven't had this much rain in such a short period of time since the '60's. The former owner built this place in the '80's, so he may have been unaware of it. He and his wife seem like good and honest people. One never knows, though, that's for sure, but I think they're decent people. Thanks for taking the time to reply :) Gayle
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Dick wrote: <snip>

the
Ah, that explains that question!

Once
The rains have been so severe that I don't believe there is a spot on our nearly 19 acres that isn't saturated! The weatherman was bemoaning the fact this morning that the ground is saturated and they were speaking of possible flooding today when more rain makes it's way through.

Hmm, it's nearly a quarter of a mile from out house out to the street!

take
to
that
That water recirculating pump sounds interesting. It does take forever for the water to get hot in the bathrooms. I'll have to google that. Five minute showers? I'm going to time myself this morning, but I think I spend nearly all that time trying to get the soap out of my hair! My son and husband most likely don't go over that by much. I'm going to look into the showerhead and the toilets as well. Good advice on conserving well water during a drought as well. Thank you for taking the time to address each of my questions, I appreciate it. Gayle
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You don't need to drain the entire 19 acres, just where the leach lines are located. And you don't have to get it all the way to the street. Just somewhere away from the leach field.
If you decide on toilets, go with Toto. Toto is the world's largest manufacturer of toilets, and none work better. We bought two, and now have a third one on the way. They have outstanding performance. Take a look at HomeClick.com. That's where we got ours. No tax or shipping charges. If you want to research the best brands, go here: http://www.terrylove.com/crtoilet.htm
Don't know if you have Home Depot or Lowe's near where you live. Both carry the Autocirc hot water recirculating pump. Lowe's was $20 cheaper in our area. Very easy to install. http://www.autocirc.com/Autocirc.htm
Dick
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If your soil has slow percolation, 2 leach fields may be necessary but the standard installation is one field.

that
Sounds like you got a lot of our rain. Here in central Alabama we've had about 14", plus hail, in the last week - 7", 5", & 2" at a time with only a couple of days inbetween. The ground is really "squishy".
My septic tank has 2 access holes, one over each of the 2 sections. Each access hole is about 14" square and tapered like a bottle cork so the hole covers make a tight fit without dropping into the tank. To pump the tank you remove the dirt from the top, lift the covers, insert the hose, and start pumping. I'm sure there are other designs though.
Bob S.
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wrote:

You can find them on their respective web sites. It is $198 at Lowe's and $219 at Home Depot.
Dick
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"Dick" <LeadWinger> wrote in message > Don't know if you have Home Depot or Lowe's near where you live. Both

Dick,
I just checked our Lowes and Home Depot for the autocirc and neither store has them. What is the aproximate cost?
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Thank you.
"Dick" <LeadWinger> wrote in message

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To look at my leach field it too would only look like one leach field, they divide the length at the diverter valve to send it to part of the filed and switching the diverter valve sends it to the other half. So it may look like one field but work as two.
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wrote:

I should have added that when I went to Lowe's to purchase our pump about a month ago, there were none on display. They did have some brochures in the plumbing department. The sales person had to call to the office to locate them. They were stored on the very top shelf in the back of the store.
Dick
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wrote:

It's fairly easy to find out if the ground is super-saturated. Our pump out guy carries a long, steel probe. He sticks this in the ground along the area of the leach lines. Works like a dipstick. If it's all wet all the way down when he pulls it out, there is a problem.
Dick
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: Hi everyone, : We had the septic tank pumped six months ago when we bought this house, : because it was full and backing up into the house. Everything was fine : up until Easter Sunday when we had over six inches of rain around here : and our yard was pretty much under water for awhile. Whenever we : flushed the toilet or ran any water in the house, we could see water : bubbling out of the ground approximately 18 inches away from the septic : tank's clean-out pipe.
It could be the vent.mine is only right abouve ground level. It looks like an upside down J. Only 2 or 3 inch diameter pipe.
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Dick wrote:

Arizona,
excess
Who do you hire to put in swales? what do I look for in the yellow pages? Do I have to figure out where they should be placed or does the...er.. "swale-guy" do all the figuring?

I was just wondering whether trying to direct and drain water to other areas that are also saturated, with little rivulets of water running all around, what good would that do? Because the entire piece of property was saturated. After a day with no rain, though, I see where some areas dry out while others still have standing water on top, so I'm assuming that with the swales the water will drain away from the saturated area once it has somewhere else to go. I think I'll show this entire thread to my husband, even though he isn't nearly as concerned about it as I am.

now
Take
Both
Thank you for the links and other useful information. :) Gayle
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Bob S. wrote: <snip> If your soil has slow percolation, 2 leach fields may be necessary but

It has been able to handle a few rainy days in succession prior to this, but the amount of rainfall this past week has been well above the norm. I can't believe the soil would have slow percolation, as it appears to be mostly sand around here.

Bob S.
Your rain? Well come and get it - it's causing me all kinds of problems. ;) Gayle
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snipped-for-privacy@here.now wrote:

<snip>
field,
the
My husband is certain that we have one leach field only. Two fields sounds like an excellent idea under normal circumstances, but I'm sure I would have simply had two saturated leach fields, instead of just the one,after the amount of rainfall we've recently had. :) Gayle
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Kathy wrote:

Whenever we

It doesn't look like a J, it's just a section of white pvc (pcv?) pipe sticking up out of the ground with a cap on it. The septic guy told us to buy a huge bag of salt, the kind the farmers use around here (don't know what *they* do with it) and put it down that pipe. He said that would prevent tree roots from growing into the pipe.
Sometimes I miss my old home. This country girl business has it's down-side! Nothing will make you feel more uncivilized than having a screwed up septic system. :) The positives far out-weight the negatives, though. Have a good one, Gayle
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Kathy wrote:

Whenever we

It doesn't look like a J, it's just a section of white pvc (pcv?) pipe sticking up out of the ground with a cap on it. The septic guy told us to buy a huge bag of salt, the kind the farmers use around here (don't know what *they* do with it) and put it down that pipe. He said that would prevent tree roots from growing into the pipe.
Sometimes I miss my old home. This country girl business has it's down-side! Nothing will make you feel more uncivilized than having a screwed up septic system. :) The positives far out-weigh the negatives, though. Have a good one, Gayle
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The idea is to pick the sink that is furthest from the hot water heater. That way, the maximum number of faucets get the fast hot water. If you have branches, the efficiency is not as good, but still better than none.
In our case, the furthest sink is a half-bath off the laundry room in the garage. Unfortunately for us, the house baths are in the opposite direction from the water heater which is in the center of the house. So we get fast hot water at the dishwasher, kitchen sink, washing machine, laundry tub and half-bath sink. We get an improvement in the two house baths, but not really quick. Before it would take about 45 seconds to get hot water in the furthest shower. Now it takes 20 seconds. Not great, but acceptable. If you are fortunate enough to have all the hot water faucets in series away from the hot water tank, you will have a great system. Where we really get help is with the dishwasher. You are supposed to let the kitchen faucet run until hot, then turn on the dishwasher. It was painful to watch all that cold water go down the drain waiting for that to happen. Now, it's 1 or 2 seconds and we're ready to go!
Dick
wrote:

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gnb wrote:

Slow percolation is caused by dense clay/rock underneath the top soil. It's rare in the lower half of AL/GA, but can occur in isolated pockets.

Hey, we got our share and sent the rest in your direction! Some folks just can't accept a gift. ;>)
Bob S.
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