Septic tanks may be unseen, and they quietly get on dealing with waste but they are not immune from trouble - the time will come when they need either attention, conversion or replacement.

They are subject to a range of problems - overflowing, blockage or bad odours and often these symptoms can be traced to a failing or blocked soakaway. 

Every septic tank must be connected to a soakaway, and we've talked about this elsewhere but to recap - soakaway failure mostly comes down to a combination of poor construction or maintenance, deterioration of the septic tank itself or the drainage pipes - especially if they are clay pipes.

OK so how will you know if your soakaway has failed?

Here are the most likely symptoms: 

  • Effluent surfacing/leaking.
  • Bad odours.
  • Septic tank backing up soon after emptying.
  • Bathroom and kitchen gullies overflowing.
  • Residual effluent in Inspection chambers.