Sometimes the environmental people will give you options without refrerence to cost or you might not like what they tell you. A couple of years ago, King County WA (not a terribly progressive county) approves a system called a Glendon Biofilter. While developers are familiar with perc testing, first-time land buyers may not have thought to do this. Email: eric.morse@mecindustries.com Ask for any records of perc tests that may have been done on the property before since they are public record. Or you may be able to put a septic system drain field on a neighboring lot that does pass the perc test. If you don’t care about drainage and don’t plan to build on the land, conducting a perc test can be a waste of money. The test measures how fast water drains into a standard-sized hole in the ground. Not acceptable for leach field. He graduated from the University of Nebraska at Omaha where he obtained a Finance and Banking degree. A perc test, which paves the way for a septic system on your property, is only necessary when the property does not already have access to a municipal sewer system. By clicking "Continue" and/or continuing to browse this site, you give us and our third party tools permission to place cookies on your browser. For more information contact Morse Engineering and Construction. Septic system regulations vary widely, but most municipalities require that the leach field meet specific requirements above and beyond the perc test. The sand has to meet spec too. Or if Boards of Health ever even consider alternative septic options? Does anyone know of any septic options if that is the case? The average height is about 7'. Soil testing usually has to be done to determine whether the site can support a home. It would all work by gravity.You'll need a specific fill for the system to work right (and be acceptable to the authorities). What do the results of the perc test mean? The reasons property can fail the perc test can be numerous but typically include unacceptable soil conditions, a high-water table, a too-small lot or a location near a lake or stream or other environmentally sensitive areas. The perc test results may have a lot to do with whether you want to buy a lot or how much you pay for it. If a lot fails the perc test, it may be difficult or impossible to get a permit for a septic system. If they have septic systems installed, that suggests they passed a perc test and your nearby lot will also pass. This varies from one location to the next. Get complete site access to expert advice, how-to videos, Code Check, and more, plus the print magazine. Typically, you’ll have a perc test done when you’re considering the purchase of a site. Speak to a local health department representative. ImproveNet connects you to local professionals who can do a perc test on your land. Check with the county laws to find out how long a Perc test is valid. However, with all things perc, rules vary greatly from town to town so don’t make any assumptions. Local health department rules and regulations control who can do a perc test. You’ll need the perc test results when you go to obtain the building permit for the dwelling. Before I tell you what we did, give a little more info.Tim. We may earn a commission when you click our links. Another option if the perc test shows that a septic system isn’t able to be used on the site is to de-water the area. Is the lot a steep cliff ? S&E Septic Service and Construction, Website Design and Development by Worldwide TeleNet. If you hide something they will nail you to the wall but if you ask first they are alway glad to help. So, THEN talk to a really good local septic contractor about your options. The information included in this post is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as legal or financial advice. If you already own the lot, your results may decide how much it is worth, and what you can do with it. The limiting zone is defined by upper layer of the water table or impermeable rock or soil. Address: 472 Main St, Fiskdale, MA 01518 You’ll need a civil or geotechnical engineer to plan this project. Watch remodeler Josh Oduin demonstrate how to embed premade corners and banding in thinset to waterproof a new shower before tiling. A perc test is only necessary if a property doesn’t have access to a municipal sewer system . ImproveNet can connect you with local professionals who can take care of this soil testing for you. The perc test is a fairly expensive test to conduct because it requires two or more holes to be dug down at least 2 to 3 feet and approximately 6 to 12 inches wide. The results determine whether the town will allow a septic system to be installed, and system designers use the results to size the leach field. The worst of these is that the site will be deemed ineligible for a house to be built, so you’d have to find a new site for your home. You may be required to find suitable space for both the active leach field and a replacement field, for use in 20 or 30 years when the original field is exhausted. Any thoughts you might have would be fantastic. Disclaimer: REthority is supported by ads and participation in affiliate programs. It’s often a good idea if you are buying land that you may want to build on someday. Perc test is short for “soil percolation test.” It will tell you whether a lot can be used as a drain field for a septic sewer system. After waiting from a few minutes to a half-hour or more, measure the water level again. Andrew Helling is the founder and editor of REthority.com. Read on to learn everything you need to know. You would have to check with your local health dept or whoever permits septics to determine which alternative types of systems are allowed. Depending on rules, you can sometimes put in a modified septic system with additional filters, for example. * I have a beautiful 5.5 acre piece of land in Massachusetts with an area of upland large enough for a one-family home. On rural sites without municipal sewage systems, a failed perc test means that no house can be built – which is why you should make any offer to purchase land contingent on the site passing the soil and perc tests. In some cases, a more expensive alternative septic system may be allowed. After pouring some water into the hole, place a board across it and measure down to the surface of the water. The rules may also specify how much water is to be poured into the hole. 2. Sounds simple and is, relatively. Less commonly, a site can fail because the soil is too permeable, allowing the effluent to reach the groundwater before it is fully treated.