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Old 01-13-2010, 12:05 PM   #1
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


Hello All,

About 50' to the closer corner of the house resides the septic tank, the system is a little different. All fluids are taken off the top and sent into the county sewer system. Weather it comes off the top or how exactly I am not sure. Just know that fluids go with the county and solids stay there. Septic tank has not been pumped in at least ten years, homeowner uses one of the chemicals you put into the system every month. Never any sign of settling in that area of the yard just fairly flat and grassy.

The homeowner asked me, Mike why did we never consider putting the garage over the septic tank, not literally over the tank but near. Still leaving access to pump it when ever needed.

This question was asked to me last night and my gut says settling issues and just not enough stable ground underneath. I have a feeling the county may agree.

I also do not know how much room is needed for the septic tank.

I am not real clear on the system or any of these systems, but I have been told it does have leach lines. The garage would most likely sit over a leach line.

To be clear the garage site has been chosen not near the tank or lines, other side of yard.

Any other reasons you guys would not build on the sight or would you???

Thanks,
mike

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Old 01-13-2010, 12:36 PM   #2
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


I would check for restrictions via the building department. I would have concerns of settling, future maintenance, etc. Off-hand, sounds like not a good place for the garage over the tank.

But what purpose does the tank supply if it's connected to county sewer? Is removing the tank and connecting direct to the sewer an option? Might be an opprotunity to get rid of the tank - you'll have digging equipment, fill, etc. in play to build the garage anyways.

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Old 01-13-2010, 01:02 PM   #3
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


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I would check for restrictions via the building department. I would have concerns of settling, future maintenance, etc. Off-hand, sounds like not a good place for the garage over the tank.

But what purpose does the tank supply if it's connected to county sewer? Is removing the tank and connecting direct to the sewer an option? Might be an opprotunity to get rid of the tank - you'll have digging equipment, fill, etc. in play to build the garage anyways.
It something I am going to investigate, just to understand.

It was explained to me by the homeowner and recently by some guys who work for the water district. The main next door broke between the T at the street and his meter.

I was asking them and they said the way they understand it is the way the developed the place was so some sort of recycling grey water type facility could be built for the neighborhood. To the best of my understandings and neighbors all of the liquids make it to the lines but the solids stay, i want to find out where they go and some more information about it.

Not a huge deal, the garage will be someone where else and the septic has not been a problem so probably wont tie into there system but will have to see.

What has been told to me does not add up but maybe that is just me.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:31 PM   #4
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


Two reason come to mind for me.
Never good to drive on the tank. I don't think they are designed to hold the weight although they probably will.
Maintenance access.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:50 PM   #5
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


A neighborhood gray water recycling facility sounds like the sort of goofy thing Californians would come up with. I grew up in Santa Rosa, and was never happier to leave a place in my life.
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Old 01-13-2010, 02:38 PM   #6
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A neighborhood gray water recycling facility sounds like the sort of goofy thing Californians would come up with. I grew up in Santa Rosa, and was never happier to leave a place in my life.
Haha, well I do not know what the idea was exactly. There is quite a water shortage here in California...

Santa Rosa, pretty place.

I live in Rohnert Park, moved here from San Diego to go to School.

The garage is in El Dorado County.
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:09 PM   #7
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Septic tanks generate methane gas and if it leaks into the garage, and it explodes, the garage will be in the next county!
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:16 PM   #8
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i didnt think the effluent off the septic tank was considered gray water
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Old 01-13-2010, 10:31 PM   #9
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


This sounds like a special type of sewer system known as a small diameter pressure system. It is in use in several locations in Massachusetts where there is shallow bedrock, and installation of conventional gravity sewer lines is too expensive given the need to excavate large amounts or rock.

The idea behind the system is that every homeowner is provided with a septic tank for solids settling, and the liquid effluent is either pumped or flows by gravity to a small diameter shallow sewer line which is pressurized. This line connects to other lines, and eventually typically reaches a gravity sewer, which may be up to several miles away.

If you have such a system, you almost certainly have deed restrictions that were imposed at the time of construction. There may also be restrictive covenants on your property, or local regulations that cover what can and cannot be built, and where. You need to check with your local code enforcement officer to see how much leeway you have. Regardless, building a permanent structure over a septic tank is strictly prohibited in Massachusetts, and probably most other places, because of access restrictions to the tank, structural support issues, and the difficulty imposed in replacing or repairing the tank in the event of a leak.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:41 PM   #10
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


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i didnt think the effluent off the septic tank was considered gray water
That brings up a real good point.

I do not mean to be gross hear, but is human urine grey water?

I thought it was just laundry run off and dishwashers stuff of this nature.

Will be investigating.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:41 PM   #11
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


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Septic tanks generate methane gas and if it leaks into the garage, and it explodes, the garage will be in the next county!
Haha, that is a very true fact.

Yea that would not be good.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:48 PM   #12
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Garage over Septic tank and Leach lines


Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Holzman View Post
This sounds like a special type of sewer system known as a small diameter pressure system. It is in use in several locations in Massachusetts where there is shallow bedrock, and installation of conventional gravity sewer lines is too expensive given the need to excavate large amounts or rock.

The idea behind the system is that every homeowner is provided with a septic tank for solids settling, and the liquid effluent is either pumped or flows by gravity to a small diameter shallow sewer line which is pressurized. This line connects to other lines, and eventually typically reaches a gravity sewer, which may be up to several miles away.

If you have such a system, you almost certainly have deed restrictions that were imposed at the time of construction. There may also be restrictive covenants on your property, or local regulations that cover what can and cannot be built, and where. You need to check with your local code enforcement officer to see how much leeway you have. Regardless, building a permanent structure over a septic tank is strictly prohibited in Massachusetts, and probably most other places, because of access restrictions to the tank, structural support issues, and the difficulty imposed in replacing or repairing the tank in the event of a leak.

That makes a lot of sense, and makes even more sense to what we have going on here. The ground is a mix of clay and granite, I will find out indefinetly but this makes a lot of sense.

They have approved where we are planing to put the garage, never asked where the septic system is.

Thanks for the info.

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