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A Homeowners Guide in Choosing the Type of Septic System

In the past, sewage was not treated and disposed properly causing harmful diseases to people living in the area. Now in our generation, rules and regulations has been established on how to properly dispose sewage waste water. If you are not connected to any waste water treatment facility, the septic system is your long term solution. Septic systems are made up to maintain the health of your household for you and your family, protect the water quality and as well as help you in saving money.

It is very important to make sure that your septic system works properly but first you must need to choose the suitable type of septic system for your location. There are 4 types of septic systems that you can choose.

    1. Gravity System – this system is the most basic type of system permitted for long use. This system consists of 3 parts which are the septic tank, soil and the drain field. This requires a great area of native and undisturbed soil beneath the drain field.

    2. Pressurized System – used where sufficient soil is present but the waste water needs to be pumped to a certain area in your property. This system is also used where the soil type requires a specific vertical separation of 2 to 3 feet. The system composed of the septic tank, pump tank, drain field. The waste water from the septic tank is accepted into the pump tank and where the water is then pump and distributed in the drain field. The pump tank consists of 3 floats to control the pump 1) on/off float; 2) Redundant off float and 3) Alarm float.

    3. Alternative System – there are 3 types of alternative systems namely:

    • Mound System – this can be used where there is only one or two feet of suitable native soil because additional vertical separation is built up in a mound of specially engineered sand. The waste water is applied at the top of the mound and percolates down the sand to the native soil below.
    • Sand Filter System – a sand filter is basically a box of engineered sand and gravel which treats the waste water. This system only requires 1.5 to 2.5 suitable native soil.

    4. Proprietary System – this system is for properties that does not have sufficient native soil depth. This system has 2 kinds.

    • Aerobic Treatment Unit or ATU – needs a minimum of 12-18 inches of soil. An Aerator injects air into the tank enhancing the aerobic microbial action. This system will require a disinfectant such as chlorine or UV treatment before the waste water enters the drain field.
    • Bio filter system – this system is designed and installed on properties where there is as little as one foot of suitable soil is available.

In general, as the vertical separation decreases, the complexity of the system increases so as the cost and the maintenance requirement of the system. Alternative systems cost more than your basic system. Therefore, you need to properly use and maintain your system because repair and replacement of the system can be very costly.