Septic Scrub Preventing Costly Drainfield Problems
Drainfield Failure Symptoms


The appearance of any signs of septic system failure may not necessarily mean that your system has failed; however, it is important to understand how your system works in order to properly diagnose problems and to determine how Septic-Scrub can help you.

A septic system is a large part of the value of a home. Replacing a clogged drainfield or a complete system can cost from $5,000 to $30,000 or more. Timely and proper care should prevent problems from ever occurring.


A failing drainfield no longer has the capacity to handle the volume of water which it receives. A failing drainfield can have these characteristics: the grass is greener over the drainfield than the rest of the yard; there are odors in the yard; the plumbing backs up; the ground is wet or mushy over the drainfield. The laterals will probably also have standing water in them. These are indications that the drainfield is being converted to anaerobic conditions. A drainfield that is anaerobic will not function properly and it must be restored to aerobic conditions before it will resume normal operation. Septic-Scrub can help to do this.


As the system is used, the rockbed and soil accumulate grease, soap, and solids from the septic tank which fill in areas where water flows.

This restricts the water flow and can eventually clog the drainfield. Water, having no place to go, backs up into the soil above the drainfield. The aerobic bacteria, which filter the water, are then deprived of oxygen which they need to live in the biomass. The anaerobic bacteria grow and if allowed to persist will produce a black slimy layer, that can almost completely stop the proper percolation of water into the soil below and potentially cause plumbing backup, odors, and ponding.

If your yard is perpetually wet, chances are your drainfield has become at least partially clogged. Your septic system's drainfield begins to deteriorate from the first day of use. Clogging agents plug the passages where water should flow. Having no other place to go, it backs up into the yard.

Perpetual dampness is one of the first signs of problems with the drainfield. If left to continue, a black slimy organic layer which forms is a sign that the drainfield is failing. This anaerobic slime layer prevents proper percolation of the gray water downward and cuts off oxygen to the drainfield changing the bacterial environment.


In order to restore the drainfield, clogging agents must be removed and the bacterial environment changed back to an aerobic one (with oxygen). A restoration treatment with Septic-Scrub may be necessary if the clogging causes perpetual wetness. See Septic-Scrub™: What it Does to learn how Septic-Scrub can restore a failed drainfield.

Arcan Enterprises, Inc. P.O. Box 31057
Clarksville, TN 37040-0018
Fax: 931-368-1904
Toll Free 888-35ARCAN • E-mail: [email protected]