Case Studies - January 2021

Case Studies - January 2021

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Modules enable drainfield placement on undersized property

Problem: The owners of a three-bedroom lake home in Wisconsin utilized a holding tank and wanted to have a drainfield installed. The wooded property had limited space for a septic system due to multiple setbacks, including a well located at the side of the house, an S-curved driveway and the lake behind the house.

Solution: H&H Construction designed and installed a pump-to-gravity system that navigated through the wooded area. The installation included adding a 660-gallon pump chamber in series following the existing 1,000-gallon septic tank, with effluent pumped to the drainfield. A 77-by-6-foot trench was constructed to follow the setback from the curved driveway. The drainfield consists of a base of ASTM C33 sand and 14 Eljen GSF (Geotextile Sand Filter) B43 modules. The pipe on top of the GSF modules was connected using elbow fittings.

Result: The homeowners were able to stop costly pump-and-haul services by having a code-compliant drainfield. The Eljen GSF system ensures effluent is treated to secondary treatment standards before reaching the groundwater and lake. 800-444-1359;

Advanced treatment leachfield allows early spring installation

Problem: A cost-effective replacement septic system was needed for a two-bedroom house in New York State. The home was on 0.6 acres with a collapsing, existing metal septic tank located under a deck and a stone and pipe leachfield approximately 30 feet from an existing shallow well. The shallow well and other existing structures limited available space for a septic system. The owner wanted to continue using the well, which tested clean of any fecal coliform, because new wells in the area yield poor water quality with high iron and sulfur content. The system had to meet township and New York state standards including a minimum separation distance of 45 feet from the existing shallow well to the leachfield.

Solution: An Infiltrator ATL system was selected and installed in 21 inches of C-33 sand. The system’s small footprint, at 35 feet per lateral, enabled the maximization of separation distance from the well. A lightweight IM-1060 septic tank with 12-inch snaplock riser was easily transported and installed in muddy April conditions. The passive system has no moving parts and requires no power to operate.

Result: The project was completed in three days. The light weight of the installed products and easy mobility of the materials allowed for an early Spring project completion extending a limited construction season. 800-221-4436;

System solves replacement challenge for extended-stay motel

Problem: The Riverside Inn in Maine experienced abnormally high solids buildup requiring frequent maintenance, and sought replacement of its old, concrete-chambered septic system. A new design would enable the existing system to remain operational during construction to accommodate long-term tenants at the facility. With soils only draining at negative 6 inches to the seasonal water table, the new system design required state of Maine approval.

Solution: The selected Presby Enviro-Septic system design handles the 1,720-gpd design flow from the 16-unit motel. The system includes two 1,500-gallon septic tanks with a Presby Maze installed in one tank to further trap suspended solids and provide increased bacterial breakdown. During ground preparation for the replacement system, 3 feet of silty clay contributing to the perched water table was removed. The system was installed in two phases. Approximately 2 feet of clean sandy loam fill was placed below the proposed disposal system, and once the first section of the system was installed and inspected, the existing disposal system was disconnected. Then, the new 1,500-gallon septic tank with the Presby Maze and a new pump station was installed and connected to the replacement disposal system. Once complete and functional, the second section of the system was completed, connected, and loamed and seeded as required by code.

Result: Kathy-Rae Emmi of Septic Systems of Maine reports that the new disposal system is functioning as designed with no signs of stress or indication of breakout. 800-473-5298; 


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