What is a drainfield? A drainfield is sometimes called a leachfield or absorption field. It is a network of pipes, trenches, gravel and soil. The pipes are perforated to allow wastewater to drip and flow through. They are laid inside of trenches or beds that are filled with gravel, which is also part of the filtration process. Soil surrounds the entire drainfield area and works in other ways to help your septic system work effectively.
Once it reaches the drainfield, the wastewater trickles out of the pipes and passes into the gravel layer. Then it passes on down into the soil, which is where filtration happens on a micro level. The soil actually filters the wastewater like a composting system, passing through the various pore-like spaces within the soil. This is where the soil microbes go to work, treating the wastewater before it enters the ground water supply. Soil that is dry, permeable and rich in oxygen that is located below the actual drainfield is best suited for this process and will yield the most positive results.
How to Take Care of Your Drainfield
Locate your drainfield and reserve area You should never plant a garden or anything larger than grass over top of your drainfield. Planting grass is a good idea to combat erosion of the soil over the drainfield. Don’t park cars, equipment or anything heavy over the top your drainfield or reserve area. Conserve water and find out what your maximum water usage should be for your system. Keep excess water away from your drainfield such as drainage ditches, irrigation systems, runoff from roofs in storms or draining hot tubs and pools. Don’t plant any trees or shrubs within 30 feet of the drainfield. Try not to build anything or pave over your drainfield – no patios, garages, driveways or other structures. The drainfield in not a safe place to house livestock.
Follow these tips and you can extend the life of your drainfield. Call All Clear Septic at 508-763-4431 to inquire about their septic maintenance program. They can help keep your septic system running smoothly and extend the life of the system. Visit www.allclearseptic.com for more information.