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Septic Industry Problems

We would like to discuss some problems or opportunities that are facing the industry. These problems are the result of improper installation of the alternative systems that are on the market today. We are finding many questions regarding the proper way to install these systems?

At Dixie Septic, our Rock and Pipe systems are tried and true throughout the industry. We honestly find that with proper maintenance and upkeep our systems will last well over 20-25 years. That is why we have stayed with the Rock and Pipe systems for over 40 years of serving our customers here in central Florida. What you will read below was taken from the “Onsite Installer” trade magazine that we get from the industry. This issue was February 2008’ starting on page 24.

The industry finds this is causing failure in the chamber systems. The failure comes in more than one way. We only ask you, which way would you prefer to go, a long lasting Rock and Pipe system, or a system that is doomed from the beginning?

fabric paper over a septic drainfiled
Drainfield Fabric Paper

The question is whether they should or should not install a fabric paper over the chamber type drainfield systems.

When Dixie Septic installs the Pipe and Rock systems we ALWAYS install a fabric paper over the drainfield. This prevents sand and dirt from getting into the rock and drainfield. In fact the Health Department requires us to do this. THEY DO NOT require that chamber type drainfield systems be covered with fabric.

Chamber type drainfield systems and fabric covers.

An Installer we spoke to posed a question: (We're paraphrasing here). When they started using chamber systems about eight years ago. they found even after using a fabric cover, that silt was getting into the chambers and had blocked them up about one-third full of silt. (Loam is a rich soil consisting of sand, silt, and clay. Some loam is found in our area of Florida, writers note). They wanted to know if it was coming in from the louvers on the sides or elsewhere? The answers are interesting.

One installer replied that he had found even with or without fabric cover that the bottom of the chamber had welled up to fill almost one-third of the chamber with silt.

This truly was some kind of expansion of the material as there was no overburden and no sinking of the chambers. He had no name for it other than to call it “swelling of the soil”.

To quote him: “As for covering the chambers with fabric, only time will tell.” One of the flags he said “was the laying of the fabric out, then covering it. If the fabric is not contoured to the chambers, it will bridge low areas and eventually sag and give way and create subsidence.” Information he had found suggest the issue of soils expanding or rising inside the void rather than infiltration through the louvers.”

pictures of failed chamber septic systems

Example images of failed chamber systems filled with sand and soil

He went on to say That it is not possible in soils under pressure (Rock and Pipe systems, (Dixie’s way of doing things). He went on to say that all soils under Rock and Pipe systems to be under pressure and not likely to expand.

Another said they install chambers with fabric paper and some chambers without fabric paper. In chambers without fabric paper they have seen infiltrated soil in the chambers, blocking the use of the chamber itself.

Another said that the sand in the chambers comes in from the louvers and from expansion of the soil below the chambers. Some manufacturers have now changed the design on the louvers sloping them more downward.

Dixie Septic Tank is more than happy to show you more examples of louvered chambers where sand has gone through them and filled up the useable chamber area.

Which system would you prefer? In this part of Florida putting fabric cover over the chambers is not required. Even if they did, reading above tells you of problems that could exist. We hardly ever see installers putting fabric paper over chamber systems, it’s cheaper and less labor involved.

So now you have a choice to make... Do you go with a system that is doomed to fail from the start by putting sand into the chambers from two different directions?

Or do you go with a Rock and Pipe system, like what Dixie installs, that will give you 20-25 years of service? Remember you only get what you pay for. We only do the Rock and Pipe systems and we know they will give you many years of service.

Septic System FAQs

We are pleased to offer a few articles we have written over the past several years. We hope they might offer tips and answers to questions or issues you may have in regards to septic tanks, septic systems and drain fields. Please contact us directly with specific questions for a personal consultation.

Septic System FAQs
Smart Septic Systems
Going Green
Aggregate Rock System
Equal Distribution™
Pre-Contract Checklist
Septic Systems 101
Septic System Maintenance
Bio-Mat 101
Flushing Medication
Facts and Folklore
Pipe and Rock System
Septic Tank Installation
What is OSTDS?
Fat, Oil and Grease
Septic Industry Problems?
Sewer or Septic System?
Time to Take the Gloves Off!
Failing Septic Systems
Eye Opening Definitions
On-Site Estimate

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Dixie Septic Tank, Inc.

335 N. Boundary Avenue
Deland, Florida 32720

Phone: (386) 738-3030
Fax: (386) 740-7666
Lic# SRO991327
Contact Dixie Septic Tank

Home Page Failing Septic Systems Septic System Maintenance What is OSTDS?
Septic Services Going Green Bio-Mat 101 Fat, Oil and Grease
Smart Septic Systems Aggregate Rock System Flushing Medication Septic Industry Problems?
Concrete Septic Tanks Equal Distribution™ Facts and Folklore Sewer or Septic System?
Septic System FAQs Pre-Contract Checklist Pipe and Rock System Time to Take the Gloves Off!
Contact Us Septic Systems 101 Septic Tank Installation Failing Septic Systems
Septic Tank Cleaning Eye Opening Definitions
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