The first is a method which examines the condition of the septic tank only. It requires that the septic tank be emptied during the examination. The tank is observed for level of liquid and is examined for holes, cracks, etc. This test provides important clues to other problems which may exist in the septic field itself. Subsequent to the test, a written report is issued, describing the findings. The cost for this test is $150.00, depending upon geographic location of the property. The cost for pumping the septic tank is in addition to the price quoted.
The second method involves the “hydraulic loading” to test if the system is functioning as it should. This entails “loading up” the system to drain water and can only be performed during summer months. The leach field is observed for performance (some digging may be required) both visually and by means of probing. Subsequent to the test, a written report is issued, describing how the system performed. The cost for this test ranges from $225.00 upwards, depending upon geographic location of the property and whether or not water for the test is available on-site.
The third method involves the “hydraulic loading” test as well as an inspection of the septic tank. This method as well can only be performed during summer months, requiring that the septic tank be pumped to allow a visual inspection of the interior of the tank. Prior to and while the tank is being pumped out, the technician observes and identifies additional visual and auditory clues which provide information indicative of signs of failure, both in the septic tank and the leaching field. After the test, a written report is issued, describing how the system performed. The cost for this service ranges from $375.00 depending upon the geographic location of the property, and whether or not water for the test is available on site. This price does not include the cost of pumping the tank.
The fourth method is performed during summer months as well and utilizes both the second and third methods previously described, in addition to a video camera inspection of the interior of the lines (pipes) of the leaching field. This method requires digging with a mini-excavator to provide access to the header and to the end of each lead or run of pipe in the septic system. With the video camera, we are able to determine if the field has been compromised by solids leaching into the leach field pipes, whether the pipes have maintained required grade, if there are any cracks/breaks in pipes, whether or not water is pooling in areas, etc.
If solids have leached into the pipes and are creating blockages, high-pressure flushing will be done to clear the lines. Cost for this service is $1800.00 depending upon geographic location and size of the tank. The fourth method requires ready access to water. The price includes the cost of pumping the tank. This type of examination requires that an application be submitted to the Department of Health. Upon receipt of approval from them, the work can commence. An application fee of $150.00 must be paid to the Department of Health when the application is submitted.
Applicable taxes are in addition to prices quoted for all testing methods. A written contract is required prior to all tests being carried out.
The first three methods described above are cost effective and reliable test methods to determine the functioning of the septic system; however, none guarantee a trouble-free system. A number of factors can conceal latent defects. Remember that the entire system is underground; any test or inspection is limited by this fact.
The fourth method of inspection is the most reliable in that it provides conclusive visual proof of current conditions inside the pipes of the septic leach field, as well as some limited proof of whether or not adequate prep and fill material were used in initial installation of the system.
The bottom line is that these inspections and tests are reliable, but not perfect. Concrete analyses would only be able to be provided if very expensive lab testing was done. This would require that test samples be removed in several locations of the system and surrounding area.
Sieve analyses and tests would then be carried out to determine current permeability of both native and fill materials (used in preparation for the system install). For this type of testing, we would collect test samples, submit them to the lab for testing, and provide a written report detailing the findings of how the system performed. Cost for this service would be on an individual basis, would require a site consult, and a written contract.
If you need a septic system test or inspection done to fulfil the requirements of a purchase and sale, or a mortgage/finance, we will be happy to provide one for you. Hoyt’s Septic Services Ltd is a licensed septic handling business and a licensed septic system installer. In addition to providing septic system installations for new home construction, we are specialists in rehabilitating or replacement of existing systems.
Not sure how you’re going to pay for your inspection? Finance it with a time payment plan.