I have 2 basement drains in my house.
It looks like at one time a washer and dyer was down there.
They do not appear to be hooked to my septic tank.
Where would these go?
I am thinking of adding a 1/2 bath in the basement and wonder if I can
Any clue how I can figure out where they go?
They make dye for this. Pour in some dye and go watch for it to appear in
the sewer pipe in the street at a downstream manhole. If no dye appears
then your drains are not connected to the sewer.
You obviously have to access the line to the septic system. In mine,
I have a downstream box to switch grey water to separate leach field
if needed and access is easy for me. I would think if access is
difficult, you could call your septic guy out to pump tank and he or
you could simultaneously run dye test.
I can see the main line from the house that runs to the septic.
it is 4 foot up from the basement floor.
So line from the basement probably do not run to the septic.
I need to find the septic tank, I am not even sure where or what it
I have no indications of an access cover in the yard.
The septic is probably pretty old
Finding one can be a problem. Most systems have the cover completely
buried down a foot or so.
Can you contact the previous owner? That would be the simplest.
If not, then the tank _should_ be in a direct line with the pipe you
can see exiting the basement. A thin metal prob inserted repeatedly
every few feet on that line should trace out the pipe until you come
to the tank itself. Works best if the ground is damp.
For your purposes it doesn't matter where they go if it isn't the
septic. Pop the cover- have someone pour a bucket of water in the
drain. When it doesn't come sloshing into the septic you know you
need to rethink the 1/2 bath.
You might not even need to pop the cover. If your septic isn't too
deep- go stand by it and see if you can hear a toilet flush. If you
can, then repeat with bucket in drain.
you obviously have never had a septic system. They don't have covers you
can 'pop' as a rule. AND they are always full, so you'd never see water
'slosh' into the tank. Unless you were having it pumped and happened to try
the test whilst the tank was empty. Also, they don't make noise whilst
standing next to them.
I've never had anything but a septic system. If there is no cover
on yours how do you pump it out? And I can hear water run into my
tank when a toilet flushes.
The inlet is higher than the outlet by design.
When I was a kid we had a septic tank and we never had to have it
pumped while we lived there, which was at least 7 years, maybe 10
years. I believe it had a cesspool as well as a septic tank, at least
that was what everyone said. The water flowed first into the cesspool
where the crap settled out but the water overflowed into the septic
tank where it filtered down into the ground. The septic tank was
about 4 times as big as the cesspool as I recall. Cesspool probably 2
or 3 feet in diameter, not sure how deep. I never heard any noises
come from it.
Okay, the line goes out four feet from the basement floor, so the tank
"cap" is likely a little above that line. But the floor drain is
below that point, going into a dry well. And your perimeter drains may
well go into it, too, if you don't have a good spot for them to
deliver to the
surface away from the house.
If you really want to put in the 1/2 bath, and decide after due
consideration to put in a macerator pump, it would only add about
$500 to the project, and the floor drain could be left alone to catch
"overflow" onto the floor. But if you go the macerator route, make
the unit is NSF approved and is installed in a rather inconspicuous
And I suggest an audible warning if the unit gets too full. After all,
sorta like a sump well, but more difficult if it stops working without
you knowing it.
No need to consider a "dye test" with indocyanine green.
If it is like my house my wash water goes to a separate system, commonly known
around here as a dry well. Mine was built by a previous owner. I would never
consider hooking up a half bath to it.
As someone else suggested pop the cover on your septic and do the bucket test.
Five gallon bucket would probably work best.
As Steve said, the bucket test won't work on a septic tank system
unless you pump it first. Also, in order to 'pop the cover' in most
septic systems it will take at least an hours work digging the 'cover'
out by hand before you can 'pop' it
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