New Construction Home Owner
The septic system is one of the most important things to consider when you are building a new home. Why, because even if it is designed correctly and properly installed it will probably at some point fail. Too many engineers and installers are using old technology to save money for the consumer. But are they really saving?
Consider this when choosing a design. Using our treatment systems, we will guarantee our sub-surface drip disposal against septic related failure for 10 years. Everyone else may or may not have a warranty, be sure to ask, as fields do fail. In the fall of 2013 we had six failures under reconstruction, none of them ours.
Fields fail for many reasons. Grandpa had a homemade bar of lye soap. When Grandma needed to do laundry he shaved a few flakes off for her. Today we have commercial soaps with additives, conditioning shampoos, bath oils, lotions, anti-bacterial soaps, disinfectants, chlorinated dishwasher liquids, garbage disposals and water from low flow fixtures all going to a disposal field that hasn't changed much since the 70's and may not be able to treat this mixture.
Yes there have been attempts to improve but disposal is essentially the same:
Flush it, forget it because it went away to the underground by way of a gravity flow system, the shortest way to failure.
We do not use gravity flow. It was fine when toilets used 5 gallons per flush and the washing machine used 40 gallons. This was because there was sufficient water volume to flood the field. Today our 1.6 gallon flushes barely reach the disposal site, and when they do, they form a biomat (think a black, Jell-O like substance) which will eventually clog the system.
With new technology, we either treat the effluent (liquid from the septic tank) to high standards, and reuse it for irrigation purposes, or we store it in a small tank and then release it via a siphon or pump vault to disperse throughout the entire field. Over the years we have seen many field failures both in residential and commercial septic systems. Some, we could remediate and some which had to be replaced. It is a frequent enough issue that the regulations read "there must be room for a second field for when the first one fails." The word "if" is not used.