How to Build a Septic Tank

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How to Build a Septic Tank

How to Build a Septic Tank

As construction costs continue to rise, homeowners who wish to build homes look for ways to save money wherever they can. If there’s an opportunity to save you can be sure that people will jump at it. Some homeowners have even found that if they manage the installation of their septic system they can save money and appear as savvy savers to their friends and neighbors.

In concept this may sound like a good way of saving a few dollars. In practice it has the potential of saving a few dollars but also costing a whole lot more if not done right. Doing a cost/benefit analysis is a good idea before beginning the process.

Septic System Concept

The general concept behind a septic system is a very natural one. The idea is to remove organic waste to a secure location, of proper condition, for natural remediation. The key words in this situation are ‘proper condition’. Without proper condition the natural processes will not occur.

Who Runs the Show?

When it comes to building a septic tank system you are really the manager of the job more than anything else. Unless you own or know how to run a backhoe, are capable of signing the health departments acceptance forms, can do a soil test or design an approved drain field, you are the construction manager. But when all is said and done the health departments run the show. They hold the hoops for you to jump through.

Locating the Field

Part of building a septic tank system is the location of the drainage field. To arrive at this you must submit a lot of plans which locate all drainage features, structures, trees and lot lines. Every health department is different so make friends and not enemies with them.

Once there is some sort of an idea about where the drainage field might go you’ll need to find out how many soil test pits need to be dug. Everybody’s is different, so don’t count on the old perc tests. They are pretty much a thing of the past. Backhoe cost can vary but sometimes a potential builder can be talked into a quick dig if it betters his chance of getting the job. Once the soil has been tested and your home plans have been approved for the number of bedrooms, the authorities will tell you how big the drain field needs to be and where it needs to go.

Constructing the Field

Again, the health department dictates this aspect of the project. The materials themselves are not all that expensive given their importance but how they are installed is another matter. Slope, direction, depth, flow and soil-type need to be approved by the health department. The backhoe will need to return with its cost meter running as well. You will also need to be on-site because you are in charge. If it is not done right the first time you will end up paying quite a hefty sum to get it put right!

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  1. roy gardner said,

    on October 1st, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    I have bought a 12×30 prefab cabin to hunt and spend weekends at.It is located on a hill with trees surrounding it,my plans are to add a shower.commode and a sink how can i build a system that will handle this

  2. Jonas Moen said,

    on June 3rd, 2009 at 7:19 am

    I’d like to know the answer to the hunting camp septic system.

  3. Terry Gaines said,

    on February 22nd, 2009 at 10:41 am

    looking to build a septic system for hunting camp big enough for 8 guys (weekend hunters). what would be the most cost affective way to do it