Septic System Maintenance in Warrenton VA: How to Locate your Drainfield

You may be new to septic system maintenance at your Warrenton VA home. An important part of septic system maintenance is keeping your drainfield safe, so that it can do its job.

Why It’s Important to Locate Your Drainfield
You need to know where your drainfield is located so you can care for it properly, without causing any damage to the drainfield. You also need to know where your drainfield is located, so you can check it for problem signs, such as soggy soil and odors.

How to Locate Your Drainfield
If a copy of the drawing of your drainfield is not available from other sources (such as the former homeowner, or the Town or County government) you can follow these tips for locating your drainfield:

  • Monitor the lawn: in late summer, if you stop watering your lawn you may see green stripes in your yard, and that’s where your drainfield pipes are located. During the winter, the areas above your drainfield pipes may be the first place frost melts in your yard.
  • Look for white-capped tubes or pipes, cut off at or near the ground surface. They allow you to check the liquid level in the drainfield pipes and are located at the ends of the pipes.
  • Carefully probe the areas leading away from the septic tank. Avoid using heavy steel wrecking bars or similar probing tools that can damage the septic tank top or other components.
  • Look for clues such as shallow, parallel depressions, which may mark the drainfield trenches. It is unlikely that a drainfield could have been installed among large trees or in very rocky areas.
  • Go under the house and look where the sewer pipe exits the foundation. The septic tank is usually within 10 feet of the foundation.

Once you know where your drainfield is located, you should be sure to never:

  • Pave over the drainfield
  • Park or drive heavy equipment over the drainfield
  • Place an aboveground pool over the drainfield
  • Planting trees or shrubs too close to the drainfield
  • Disturbing the soils with a landscaping project or livestock
  • Divert any water from your home or pool to the drainfield

Of course, you can alway call SES Mid-Atlantic LLC, and we will help you locate your drainfield. Serving Warrenton VA, and all of Northern Virginia, the professionals at SES are trusted, knowledgeable, licensed, and insured to provide septic tank maintenance.

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