Five Signs Your Septic System Drain Field Is Malfunctioning

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An important part of your septic system is the drain field. This field treats the wastewater that comes out of your home. The drain field can become clogged with oil and debris and it can also be damaged by tree roots and other external hazards. Express Septic Services advises that part of our annual maintenance includes inspecting the drain field to make sure everything is okay. The following signs indicate that your septic system’s drain field is clogged or leaking.

Slow Drainage

Because the drain field handles the liquid waste, you may notice that your household drains slow down when the drain field gets clogged. This can also be an indication that your septic tank is full. If the drain field is leaking, you may notice that your yard drainage has slowed down and you have puddles above the drain field and septic tank.

Excess Water

If your drain field piping has cracked, you will definitely notice water retention in the ground above the field. This can also cause the water to leak back into the septic tank. It’s a good idea to check the ground above your septic tank and drain field regularly to make sure it isn’t mushy or spongy. If it is, your septic system is leaking and this could be due to cracked drain field pipes.

Plant Growth

One way to know for sure that your septic drain field is leaking is if you have excess plant growth above it. This is an excellent gauge that the drain field is not operating as it should be. It may be that you have excess weeds growing in this spot in your yard or the plants you have planted above it are doing exceptionally well.


You will not notice this but we will during our annual maintenance visit. If the drain field gets damaged, it will backflow into the septic tank as we discussed briefly above. You may think that your septic tank needs to be pumped because it is full, but the problem could actually be the drain field backflow into the septic tank.

Sewage Odors

Finally, if you smell sewage odors above your drain field, it is leaking and not treating the wastewater correctly. This can also be a sign of a cracked septic tank if you smell sewage odors above the septic tank, as well. If you smell sewage odors inside your home, the tank could be back-flowing into the home or the drain field could be back-flowing into the tank.

Express Septic Services in Greenville, SC, would be happy to help. Give us a call today and we will come out and inspect your septic system including the drain field.

Please call Express Septic Services at 864-303-0337 for a FREE estimate. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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