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Old 05-22-2013, 02:50 PM   #1
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


We currently have a deck that was here when we bought the house in 1998. We would want to remove it(rotting joists, etc.) and build a 3 season porch if possible. My question/problem is our septic tank is near the one corner area of our deck. The distance from the closest edge of septic tank cover to the deck is 3.5' to 4'. Would this be allowed, or is it too close? Another problem is the drain pipe runs from the house under the deck to the septic tank. How can the digging be done safely for the post footings, with the pipe and septic tank near? I don't know where the tank begins and ends. I'm waiting for a call back from the building inspector. Thanks.

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Old 05-22-2013, 04:32 PM   #2
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


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We currently have a deck that was here when we bought the house in 1998. We would want to remove it(rotting joists, etc.) and build a 3 season porch if possible. My question/problem is our septic tank is near the one corner area of our deck. The distance from the closest edge of septic tank cover to the deck is 3.5' to 4'. Would this be allowed, or is it too close? Another problem is the drain pipe runs from the house under the deck to the septic tank. How can the digging be done safely for the post footings, with the pipe and septic tank near? I don't know where the tank begins and ends. I'm waiting for a call back from the building inspector. Thanks.
Welcome to the Forum!

you may want to edit your profile to include your location as many times answers to questions are based upon your location.

I would recommend checking it with your Board of Health (health department) or other local agency in charge with overseeing septic systems. I know in Massachusetts we have a minimum horizontal separation from foundations and both septic tanks and septic systems.

the question in regards to the building sewer line is dependent on the type of foundation being installed and your local regulations. Again the town should be able to provide some guidance in that regard.

You may need to relocate the tank or sewer line based upon your local requirements.

Good luck

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Old 05-22-2013, 07:15 PM   #3
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


Thanks. The inspector called me back and referred me to the county environmental dept. I'll see what I can find out tomorrow. We're not going to move tank or drain pipe. That sounds too costly.
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:50 PM   #4
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


they should be able to tell you what the requirements are ..... good luck!

post back with the results
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Old 05-23-2013, 08:58 PM   #5
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


I found out today, from the county, that if I build a screen porch or 3 season porch, NO PART of the porch can be less than 5' from the closest part of septic tank. And they don't have a record of the tank location, so I would have to dig to locate the exact footprint of tank. Nothing is ever easy.
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:57 PM   #6
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no they're not. In Massachusetts a septic tank must be a minimum of 10' from a foundation, and the septic system must be at least 20' away from a basement or cellar foundation. Hard to tell the players without a score card ........

post back with any questions! Good luck!
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:59 PM   #7
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


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And they don't have a record of the tank location, so I would have to dig to locate the exact footprint of tank. Nothing is ever easy.
I forgot to suggest, if you have to dig up the tank to find it's location I would measure from at least two corners of your home to the corners of the septic tank and write it down for safe keeping.

in the future you only have to pull off your building corners to know where it's located.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:13 PM   #8
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Wanting to build a 3 season porch in Wisconsin


Thanks. I have easy access to the cover of course, but I have no idea on which end of the tank the cover is, etc. And I have river rock down, so I'd have to move the rock before I dig.

Right now I'm trying to figure out if a 3 season porch is going to work, what size it can be to satisfy the setback, and approximate price.

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Old 05-24-2013, 09:51 PM   #9
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the ends of the tank are usually about 15-18" from the edge of the cover (of course picking the right direction is key). could always stick your head in and see the walls of the tank
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Old 05-25-2013, 01:52 PM   #10
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Thanks. I never thought of sticking my head in there.
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Old 05-25-2013, 06:35 PM   #11
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you could, I said that half-jokingly

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