Where is my leach field?

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  #1  
Old 06-21-16, 08:30 AM
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Where is my leach field?

Is it possible for a homeowner to determine where his septic drain field is located? 4 years ago when I was preparing to buy my cottage I had an inspection done. The inspector opened the septic tank & said it was in good condition and that my field was downhill of the tank. I didn't question it at the time but downhill is the lake and these days I wouldn't be allowed to put the field there. After moving in I found a copy of the septic application and there's a drawing showing the field uphill of the tank. I couldn't determine if it had been inspected/approved.

2 weeks ago I had the tank pumped and the servicer said my discharge is on the downhill side.

So either my field is about 30 feet from the lake and possibly partly on a neighbors property or it's buried VERY deep uphill from the tank. How can I find out the answer?

 

Last edited by guy48065; 06-21-16 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 06-21-16, 08:54 AM
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The cheap way: Locate the outlet of your tank. Then push a long rod through the ground until you hit the pipe. Then just continue on feeling for and following the pipe. When you get to the leach field you'll likely feel and maybe hear the cruchiness of gravel.

The more expensive way: Hire a professional to come out and locate the field for you. Some have a transmitter they can shove in the outlet pipe of your tank and then use a locator on the surface to follow the transmitters path.
 
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Old 06-21-16, 09:09 AM
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Have they always used gravel? Soil is all sand and the septic was installed mid '70s.
 
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Old 06-21-16, 10:10 AM
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There are other methods of leach field construction but gravel is one of the most common.

Is there a agency or group that regulates your lake? If so is there a water line that they will not let you build below? If there is you can ask around for how long that regulation has been in affect.

I used to live on a lake and the lake authority controlled everything below 420' elevation which was most of the yard. The septic was behind the house and had a short 100' run of leach field between the tank and 420' elevation with the line running parallel to the back of the house and lake.
 
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Old 06-21-16, 10:22 AM
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My town keeps records of all the houses built here since at least the 60's. The plot maps show the locations of septic tanks and leach fields. Try a phone call to your town clerk or building inspector.
 
  #6  
Old 06-22-16, 10:14 AM
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Zoning & codes took effect much later than the 70's in this cottage community. I'll try the county health dept in the hope that they have a different version of the septic application that shows it HAS been inspected and the field is as proposed. One hint that's probably not the case is there's an order on the app that the original well which is on the same side as the septic be "abandoned and sealed by a licensed well man". This was not done. There's only a rag stuffed in the pipe under the kitchen counter.
 
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