Q:

What costs are associated with a septic drainfield?

A:

Quick Answer

Installing or replacing a drainfield for a sewage system may cost from $2,000 to $20,000 depending on where the house is located. The homeowner may need to pay for permits, an engineer to design the system, and landscapers to fix the yard after the installation.

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Full Answer

Drainfields that fail usually must be abandoned and a new one dug on the property. Even properly maintained drainfields need replacing every 25 to 30 years because the microbes that help filter the water eventually build up and clog the soil, preventing drainage to the groundwater below. Drainfields that become clogged with grease, inorganic material and solid waste may need replacing sooner than 25 years. Pumping the sewage tank every few years helps to extend the use of a drainfield; it costs $200 to $400 as of 2010.

An aerobic unit may help extend the life of a sewage system, including the drainfield. The unit costs approximately $6,000 and mixes air with the water pumped into the system, providing oxygen that allows aerobic bacteria to grow. These bacteria can break down waste products more efficiently than the anaerobic bacteria that exist in most sewage systems. Another treatment is a sand filter, which can cost about $5,000 to $13,000.

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