A Advanced Septic & Construction Services Promotes Drainfield Rehab

Opening up a saturated and compacted drainfield is only a temporary fix if the homeowners don’t know basic septic care do’s and don’ts
A Advanced Septic & Construction Services Promotes Drainfield Rehab
Taylor Beaulieu, a foreman for A Advanced Septic & Construction Services, uses a locating wand to identify the depths and location of pipes in the drainfield of a residence in Bonney Lake, Washington.

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In many cases, a septic system fails because biosolids clog the gravel/soil interface in the system's absorption beds, creating a biomat that prevents effluent from percolating into the soil. To resolve this problem, Andrew Gunia relies on three TerraLift machines that open up saturated and compacted drainfields in much the same way that aerating machines loosen up soil to boost lawn health.

“The TerraLift fractures the soil and restores the system back as close as possible to its original condition,” says the owner of A Advanced Septic & Construction Services in Sumner, Washington. “It’s a powerful tool.”

In essence, the TerraLift (formerly manufactured by the TerraLift International Family of Companies but now built by AerraTech LLC) employs a pneumatic hammer to drive a long, narrow probe 3 to 6 feet down into compacted drainfields. At the same time, the machine injects polystyrene pellets into the newly aerated soil. The pellets injected by the TerraLift are designed to keep fractured ground passages open to ensure proper air and water transpiration on a long-term basis.

“The machine is very easy to use,” Gunia says. “It’s basically a Kohler engine and an Atlas compressor that compresses 60 cubic feet of air to 300 psi.”

But Gunia says that if people continue to misuse their septic systems, drainfield problems will reoccur. “It’s a lot like open-heart surgery,” he points out. “You can correct clogged arteries today, but if you go back to smoking and drinking, you’ll soon be facing the same problem again.” So he recommends that consumers talk to their septic service contractors and get educated about septic system do’s and don’ts.

Read more about A Advanced Septic & Construction Services in the October issue of Onsite Installer.


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