We have a septic tank. About two years ago, after a hurricane, we had additional drain lines placed because of excessive water. Well, we had another hurricane and the tank was pumped. We were told we needed another drain field so we paid for another one.

We have been having lots of rain after the hurricane and the ground is saturated. When it rains, water sits on top of the tank. One of toilets do not flush and the other one is flushing slow. Once the sun comes out and it dries up, both toilets flushed. I am so aggravated because I don't know what to do!!!

  • Hello, and welcome to Stack Exchange. How much water is leaking? Could this be aggravating your problem? Jan 5, 2019 at 13:16

1 Answer 1


You have the wrong type of drainfield.

When there is a high watertable, alternate types of septic systems need to be installed, including: 1) curtain drains around your septic system (if the curtain drain can be discharged in a creek, swale, etc.), or 2) above ground septic system.

1) Remember, most drain fields are not designed to allow water to drain down into the ground, but rather allow the water to evaporate. (That’s why the drain line is laid fairly close to the ground surface...18” - 24”, rather than 8’ down.) However, a careful evaluation of the soil (perk test) and the topography of the site.

Here’s a site that explains it pretty good. https://buildingadvisor.com/buying-land/septic-systems/how-a-septic-system-works/

2) Above ground systems rely 100% for the aeration of the water and the water is pumped up to it from the tank. They are expensive and seldom used. Usually, it’s just cheaper to pump after heavy rain storms that raise the watertable.

  • 1
    Where did you get the idea that most of the water evaporates? That's not a reasonable assumption when dozens or hundreds of gallons per day flow through a typical residential system, and the article you linked doesn't say that. It explains how percolation through the soil into the aquifer is the primary treatment mechanism.
    – isherwood
    Feb 6, 2019 at 14:53

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