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Signs that the Leach Field has Failed

The leach field is a portion of your septic system that takes away the impurities from wastewater coming from the septic tank. It has seepage pipes that run at least four trenches from the septic tank drain holes. The seepage pipe allows all wastewater to drain out to a gravel or stone bed and onto the ground. Like the different parts of a septic system, they are prone to breaking, and here are the signs to look for to know if a plumber needs to be called for help right away.

One of the most obvious signs associated with the failure or damage of the leach field is the bad smell of sewage coming from immediately outside your home. This is caused by a problem in the leach field which is causing wastewater to go up the surface, most likely the backing up of wastewater to the septic tank. If wastewater seeps to the surface right above the field, the issue, generally, is with the soil. Clay does not absorb water that easily.

Wet Soil Surface
Another sign of the leach field failing is the ground being still damp even if the weather is dry. A damaged or clogged leach field pipe is most likely pushing wastewater to the ground surface and not allowing any wastewater to drain properly into the stones or gravel set up in the trenches.

Slow Drainage
A drain can drain slowly due to a failing leach field. The drain field isn’t permitting the flow of drain water at the required pace when you flush the toilet or run some water down the drain. Any drain water will just stand and drain slowly rather than drain freely. A pipe located in the trenches can get clogged, causing all other pipes connected to the leach field to make up for the trench pipe that got clogged. If other trench pipes are unable to accommodate wastewater, the water starts backing up into the system, causing the water to drain slower.

Bubbling or gurgling will start to happen once you drain the toilet or sink. As wastewater goes down the septic tank, it starts slowing and starts pushing back into the drain pipes. This causes any water remaining in the sink or toilet to gurgle or bubble. Roots of trees are capable of penetrating trench pipes, slowing or stopping the flow of wastewater.

The Backing-up of Water
After you flush the toilet or run the dishwasher, drainage water can back up into a different system, like the bathroom or kitchen sink. Wastewater isn’t going through septic pipes at the right rate. Since the water does not have anywhere else to go, it goes through other drain pipes in the home and into other drains.

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