Pluses and minuses of leach field systems

Anytime you are planning an expansion, new construction or adding an addition to an existing structure the septic system design is going to be one area where you begin to sweat. It isn’t so much about cost between tying into a system versus having an independent system, but you have to navigate local, state and federal regulations. With the drive on to be as green as possible, leach fields are becoming a subject of much discussion. Here are a few things to think about when considering home automation solutions like this.

Leach fields may not be allowed in your area

You may be looking at a large enough plat and distance from ground water to warrant a leach field under the standard codes, but your municipality may be one that prohibits their use. While some people will argue that a leach field is greener than a city sewer system, many places err on the side of caution when it comes to health concerns. It pays to check on the local, state and federal level what the requirements are to put in a leach field. Some will prohibit them, but only by occupancy rules. Others allow them, but you have to prove a need for not paying to tie into the sewer system they manage.

Choosing the leach field design

Leach fields aren’t as simple as a slanted field in the ground, there are multiple stages included in their design. They have to have catching points to filter out non-biodegradable waste. Those catching points have to be accessible to you for maintenance and to empty on a regular schedule. Some of the best designs use a staged channel layout. The waste passes through several catch points and feeds out into a multi channeled field so you don’t have one point of deposit.

Weigh the advantages and disadvantages of a leach field

According to safety equipment experts, Leach fields may be less costly to install at the outset, but they come with a higher maintenance cost over the long run compared to some city sewer systems. On the other hand, leach fields won’t suffer some of the issues a city system will face. When making your choice go by the regulation allowance first, and then calculate how much time and money you have to maintain the field over the long run.