In order to protect your septic system as an investment, you need to be sure that your plan your septic system installation carefully and work with your contractor to ensure that your septic system the appropriate distance away from any trees based on your yard layout. When tree roots start going into your drainfield it can cause serious issues with backups, poor drainage and even require repairs. While there are a number of things you can do to prevent tree and plant roots from infiltrating your drainfield – you also need to know what signs to look for. Here are a few symptoms that are indicators that tree roots have grown into your drainfield:
Patches of green in the leach field.
While this can be a symptom of other problems, tree roots often block the distribution pipes in the drainfield. This causes nutrient-rich water to leak out and settle, creating ideal growing conditions for groundcover to thrive. If you start to notice that your grass and shrubs above your drainfield are looking particularly green, this could be a symptom of a root blockage.
Sitting water on your drainfield.
If the water leaking out of your pipes becomes excessive, the water will have no other place to go and will sit on top of your drainfield and not drain properly into the ground soil, causing the ground to become soft and muddy. When the problem gets very bad, a pool of muddy water will begin to form. Be sure that you check the area around your drainfield to ensure that it is not muddy or overly saturated.
While poor drainage is also a common symptom for other septic issues, it’s important to note that sluggish drains, slow drains and slow toilets can be a symptom more than a septic tank requiring pumping. If you’re experiencing drainage issues and know that your tank isn’t yet due for a pumpout, you may have issues with roots in your drainfield.
You have to pumpout your system more often.
When your drainfield or pipes are blocked by roots, they don’t drain as well and your septic tank and fill more quickly. If you are finding that your septic tank requires pumping more often than every 3 to 5 years, you may be experiencing issues with root damage in your drainfield.
Unfortunately, it’s very hard to tell what the issue is until you contact a septic system contractor to come troubleshoot your system. By having a comprehensive inspection performed, your contractor will be able to tell you what the problem is and begin the process of eliminating the tree root blockage from your drainfield. For more information on keeping tree roots away from your drainfield, click here.