You should hope it’s just a broken pipe because a failed drainfield will cost you $2,000 to $10,000. If it’s a failing septic tank that is overloading your system, it can be fixed for a lot less. The disaster scenario? — a whole new septic system for about $15,000 plus.
To know for sure, call us. We are reliable septic system experts. We’ll give you a free evaluation and a no-obligation price quote.
When there is sewage in your house, check your septic tank water level. (You might prefer to call us to check the tank for you.)
If the water level is below the outlet, the pipe from the tank to your house could be blocked. We can get this fixed.
If the water level is above the outlet, the trouble is on the tank side or beyond. Have your tank pumped. This also lets the pumper see any obvious problems like a broken tank part or a clogged outlet screen. We will partner with a reliable pumping company or work with your regular maintenance company.
Don’t pump the tank if the drainfield is soggy. Emptying the tank could cause it to float and break the pipes.
The mess in your house can be toxic so take precautions to prevent illness.
When you have a soggy drainfield and it stinks, take these steps.
Fence off the area, especially if you have children and pets.
Keep away from standing water and soggy soil. It can be a biohazard.
If the drainfield is the only problem, pump your septic tank, cut back on water use, and let the system recover. But check with us before you pump.
The odor will eventually dissipate, but these are only short-term solutions. Let Schra advise you of your options for a long-term fix.
Drainfield failure usually occurs because the septic tank wasn’t emptied frequently enough. Multiple layers of scum accumulate and leave very little room for wastewater to pool to allow the ingredients to separate and filter through the soil.
The result is that grease and solid particles clog the drainfield, and smelly water rises to the surface. When you eventually notice, the drainfield has already failed and needs to be replaced.
It might not be your fault. After 30 years or so, the beneficial microbes in the soil around the drainfield increase to the point that they clog the soil, making water absorption difficult.
A clogged drainfield leaves you no choice but to build a new one in a new location. We will explain if this is needed and give you a free quote for the cost of a new drainfield.
Standing water or odor between the drainfield and the tank may be from a broken pipe, a simple repair for us. Advanced treatment systems may require your maintenance company to replace a part.
If your property was unused for a long time, the beneficial bacteria might have died. Use your septic system sparingly while the bacteria regrows.
When a drainfield has failed, repair is not usually possible. You need a new one in a new location. This is when you should consider the future use of your property. You may have plans for landscaping or a future building, in which case you might need to consider a compact septic system. We can help you estimate the costs of that choice.
Even if your drainfield is dead, Schra can tell you if the septic tank itself is in good shape. That can save you money and the tank can stay in place. If you want to move the tank for landscaping plans or to make pumping easier, this is a good time to do it. Schra will give you free price quotes for your options.
You also need to look at your Fort Collins, Loveland, or Larimer County regulations. Many governments, such as Fort Collins, have outlawed new leach fields or drainfields in their jurisdiction. For public health reasons, new leach fields are forbidden in most areas around the city when the main sewer utility is within 400 feet of your home. As the cities grow and development begins to surround your home, the main sewer line may be closer than you think. If your leach field fails, you may be required to connect to the main sewer line. Ask us for a free consultation and quote.
Larimer County requires certain safe ground water procedures for repairing or replacing a septic tank or septic system. Schra Construction knows and follows all environmental regulations to keep your property and your family safe. Marc Schra will explain all the processes and activities that will take place on your property while solving your septic system emergency.
Randy R., Windsor, Colorado – 5 Stars, Apr. 2017 – Mark was very informative. Helped me understand, by explaining to me what can be done and what he recommended. The decisions were ultimately up to me. He was knowledgeable, trustworthy and pricing seemed very fair. Worksite was kept clean and orderly. He completed my job promptly.
Justin G., Loveland, Colorado – 5 Stars, Oct. 2018 – My wife and I recently sold our home and needed to have septic system work done after inspection. Marc was prompt with his estimate and his completion of the work. He did a phenomenal job and was the most reasonably priced out of all the estimates we received. I work in the trades as well and am a stickler to details. I was highly impressed by both his skill and attention to detail. We will always call Marc from now on for our water and sewer line needs! Thank you, Marc, for your great work!
Lynn W. in LaPorte, Colorado – 5 Stars, Jan. 2017 – I’m going to hire them again. I was very impressed, they even called back to make sure everything was fine afterward.