Percolation Test for Building a Septic Drain Field

Proper installation of a septic tank as part of a septic system requires a percolation test to determine the soil’s rate of liquid absorption in the proposed location of the septic tank to be installed. This helps to determine the absorption rate of the material that forms part of the septic system into the surrounding soil.

This material flows from the septic tank installed into leach lines adjacent to it From there, the organic material seeps gradually into the ground. However, in case the surrounding soil is unable to absorb voluminous amounts of liquid from the prospective tank system than it would be prudent to identify a new location to avoid potentially expensive repairs in the future.

The Percolation Test

The placement or building of septic tanks, as well as the entire septic system, is an act that is highly regulated by the industry’s building codes. In this regard, a percolation test is highly recommended to determine the project’s viability before a contractor is issued with a building permit. Atlanta septic tank installation professionals ( adhere to these strict local building codes to ensure that the septic system would serve the purpose for which it was built.

As a resident of Atlanta, it is recommended that you get an approved Georgia County engineer to help speed up the approval process by the relevant county building department. Professional inspection typically involves drilling several holes in the area of the proposed septic system as part of the percolation test to aid in obtaining a building permit approval.

There are generally acceptable perc rates concerning the construction of a septic system. Below are the general guidelines for performing a perc test before placing a septic system.

Step 1, A 2-feet deep hole is dug in the prospective septic tank’s location. A measuring tape can be useful in measuring the depth, but the hole’s width is not significant.

Step 2, The hole is then filled with water and left to saturate the soil in the surrounding. This hole is then refilled with water before measuring its depth.

Step 3, Set the timer to 30 minutes and, as soon as it goes off, measure the depth of water remaining. Step 4, Using the formula highlighted below, calculate the soil’s percolation rate, 30 minutes / (Initial water depth — final water depth) If the initial and final water depths were 30 inches and 24 inches, respectively after 30 minutes, then 30 minutes is divided by the difference in inches.

30 minutes /(30 inches -24 inches) = 30 /

In the above example, 5 minutes per inch would be our percolation rate.

Step 5, Apparently, this is the last step and involves comparing the results obtained from your percolation test with those of local building codes in an effort to determine whether or not the soil where you intend to install your septic tank meets the relevant percolation bast requirements set by your county, state or local authorities.

Note that every municipality or county sets different building codes and requirements that must be met before one is allowed to build a septic tank within a prospective location. Some of the requirements and variables that may be contained in building codes include tank size, house size, percolation rate and the number of leach lines, just to mention a few.

Atlanta septic tank services and companies follow certain guidelines to ensure they provide customers with the most efficient septic system that also meets the county building codes. Ideally, the first step usually involves evaluating the site to be sure it is best suited for holding the septic tank and system. The health department may also have to review your application.

When selecting a septic system to exert, consider attributes such as experience and expertise, as these prove that the service provider is skilled enough to deliver as required. Qualified septic system technicians are also able to inspect your septic system for any minor or major damage and recommend the best action plan to help repair or reinstate the tank and system.

A septic drain field completes the septic system and renders it functional. Note that while you can save money by digging a septic drain field on your own, other aspects of the project, such as site inspection and perc tests, require the input of an engineer or a septic system professional.

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