When a realtor lists a home, or goes to preview a house with a client, it is important to understand the telltale signs of trouble with certain systems of the home, including potential major mechanical and structural issues: this certainly includes potential septic problems. Septic systems that are functioning well will show no signs to worry about. However, a poorly functioning septic system will show some definitive signs of concern that realtors should be aware of.
When a septic system starts to show signs of trouble, it is usually evident after the basic septic tank is full, but in some homes septic problems can be hidden until the system is at capacity. This is especially true if the system was just recently pumped. The good news, is there are several telltale signs the system is at risk of failing even if the system was recently pumped.
In a system that is failing or is overburdened, there is usually a scent of septic gasses that can permeate the home. This also may be more noticeable outside the home if the tank or leach field is far removed from the home. Realtors should always ask homeowners where the field is located and be sure to go out and assess the soil around the tank.
Septic systems that are beginning to go faulty will usually have very soft and saturated soil in the yard area where the septic tank and leach field are located. While the heavy rain season can make this more difficult to observe, soggy soil with a septic smell is usually more indicative of a problem.
The good news is that any system can be readily tested for functionality to ensure it is running up to par. Over time leach fields and systems do fail and this can be a cause of great concern. That is usually the time when a new leach field and septic tank system must be installed. Depending on soil and land area the failed system may lead to the need for an engineered septic system installation.
If there is any concern that the system may be failing or is need of work, realtors should always be forthcoming to both the seller and potential buyers. Getting a professional to assess the situation should occur if there are any telltale signs such as: suspicious septic odor, septic back up, slow drainage, or a soggy leach field.
When questions arise regarding a septic systems condition, it is suggested that tests be run on the system to see how well it’s working. Through the use of some testing tools like a hydrostatic pressure gauge, septic professionals can have a better understanding how well the system is working.
If there is a need to do any work on the system, realtors need to be sure to recommend professionals to their clients that are trustworthy and competent. Realtors who are looking for a good company to recommend for septic work should offer at least 3 to 4 companies in the septic business that are well rated for professionalism and have a good reputation for quality work.