Leach field not taking or holding water

As a homeowner, you already know that when the leach field is not taking or holding water, the situation is abnormal. Everything in the septic system should be taking in water because it is all about wastewater. There should be a continuous flow in the entry and exit points of the septic system. All the major components should be in optimal condition for this to happen.

The septic tank is the first place where the wastewater is treated. Here, the wastewater stays for a while so that the solid wastes could be separated from the clear effluent before it is dispersed into the leach field. If the septic tank has anaerobic bacteria, the leach field has aerobic bacteria that purify the effluent further by continuing the breakdown of much more minute particles. It also regulated the bio-mat that filters off the pathogens and contaminants before it’s returned to the surrounding environment. The bio-mat needs to be regulated because it has a tendency to thicken too much. If this happens, it would then contribute to the blockage of the leach field.

The leach field is the final component of the septic system. It is where the final stage of the wastewater treatment takes place. Many septic experts say that when the leach field suffers, the entire system suffers. Its overall condition depends on the status of the septic tank. When the homeowner sees to it that the septic tank is well-taken care of, then the leach field remains fine and functional.

But there will always be occasions when the leach field won’t be healthy. It is a natural phenomenon for a homeowner to experience the leach field not taking in or holding water. This usually takes place during heavy rains. Heavy rainfall allows great quantities of water to enter the leach field. The drastic increase in water load literally drowns the entire process. The bacteria don’t have the ideal time to do their job in decomposing the solid waste materials. As a result, the wastewater just literally enters the tank and then flows into the leach field together with all the solid waste materials that it carries upon entry. When this happens during heavy rains, you should not pump out your tank to help the system. This would only make the silt and sediments enter the septic system. The mud and sediments will eventually reach the leach field and heavily clog it.  This leads to the situation where the leach field doesn’t hold in water anymore.

The additional water load is only one of the many reasons that cause this inability of the leach field to take in water. It mainly starts in how the homeowner uses the system. It’s no secret that the use of antibacterial cleaning agents and harsh chemical cleansers has been long practiced. These kill of the resident bacteria that digest the solid waste particles in the tank. As you know, when there are no bacteria, the septic system fails to do its primary and secondary treatments. Treating the drains, toilets, and sinks as trash bins by dumping non-biodegradable materials (napkins, tampons, condoms, food scrapings and toilet paper), grease, and fats also make it difficult for the smooth wastewater treatment process to take place.

Failure to pump out the septic tank as well contributes to the situation in the leach field. When the tank is not pumped out regularly, the accumulated sludge transfers to the leach field and this disables the leach field from taking in water because of the clogging. When the wastewater flow stops in the leach field, the next batch of wastewater that enters the system cannot be accommodated anymore. This results to backing up or simple the return of the wastewater into the home or the yard. The saturation of wastewater is clearly very unhealthy for you, your household, and the surrounding environment.

Do your best in preventing the issue of a leach field not taking or holding water. Take good care of the septic system as a whole and you can never go wrong.

Leave a Comment