Mound Septic System Pros and Cons

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What Is A Septic Mound System

Mound septic systems are one of the most popular types of sewage treatment systems available today. Read on to learn more about Mound Septic System Pros and Cons!

What Is A Septic Mound System? Mound Septic Systems are designed to provide a safe and effective way for home or business owners to dispose of their sewage waste in situations where a conventional septic tank won’t work. It is impossible to install septic systems in places with a high-water table, shallow soil depth, poor soil absorption or poor bedrock that is near to the surface.

A typical mound septic system consists of the following three sections:

  • Septic Tank. Household sewage and wastewater flows to the septic tank where it undergoes anaerobic decomposition. Septic effluent then flows due to gravity to the pump chamber. The septic effluent is partially treated and still contains pathogens and pollutants.
  • Pump chamber. A septic mound pump chamber is typically a concrete or fiberglass container that receives effluent from the septic tank. The pump chamber has a pump, timer, water float and a pump control float. The timer regulates the pumping duration. Control floats regulate the precise volumes of effluent that are pumped. The pump chamber also has a high-water alarm that is triggered when the pump malfunctions or if there is a leak.
    All wastewater and effluent from the tank trickles to the pump chamber where it is pumped to the mound in precise amounts.
  • Mound and replacement field. The leach field or drain field is situated in the gravel mound. The effluent is pumped in specific or precise amounts under low pressure to ensure uniform distribution throughout the mound. Effluent trickles down the whole mound, including the layers of sand and gravel undergoing rigorous filtration that removes all pollutants and pathogens.
    The replacement field ensures that an existing mound can be easily and quickly replaced or repaired.
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Septic mound systems must not be confused with Raised bed septic system. Raised bed septic systems are constructed in an area or location whose soil accepts septic effluent, whereas septic mounds are constructed in areas whose soil do not treat or accept septic effluent. During the construction of mound septic systems, additional soil is brought to the site. On the other hand, existing soil is used in construction raised septic systems.

Septic Mound Care

Proper septic mound system care is a must for your home. Here are some tips on how to maintain your septic mound system in order to avoid any issues.

  • Avoid walking or installing a driveway over the septic mound system. This helps ensure that you do not exert pressure, compact soil surrounding the septic mound system and damage septic pipes.
  • Plant grass if you want to landscape your septic mound. Materials such as concrete or plastic are impermeable and should not be used to landscape your septic mound. These materials prevent or reduce evaporation and air supply that is essential for septic effluent treatment.
  • Regular septic maintenance ensures that your septic mound system functions optimally.
  • Install a septic tank effluent filter or pump screen. This device protects the pump and pipes from clogging.
  • The septic mound system is a vital part of the wastewater system. It is designed to filter and purify the sewage before it gets discharged into the ground. The following household waste damage septic mound systems:
    1) Paper towels and toilet paper.
    2) Feminine hygiene products like tampons and pads.
    3) Fats, oils and grease.
    4) Diapers.
  • Install a round sewer cover. A round cover is extremely strong and easy to handle compared to square shaped covers.

Mound Septic System Advantages

Mound septic systems have many advantages that make them the best option for homeowners who are unable to install septic tanks on their property due to high water table or shallow soil depth. These include:

  • They are environmentally friendly and will not contaminated groundwater even in areas with a high-water table. The effluent in a mound septic system undergoes a very rigorous filtration process that removes all pollutants.
  • Cost-Effective. Mound septic systems are more costly than conventional septic systems but less expensive than custom engineered septic tanks. Some of the costs incurred in the construction of a mound septic system involve excavation of the elevated mound, installing filters, tank and pipes. Another major upside of a mound septic system is that it is easier and cheaper to maintain, and it can be easily reset by digging out the soil and turning it over.
    On the other hand, a custom engineered septic system is expensive since it requires complex excavation, leach field and expensive grinder pumps (in some cases).
  • Herbaceous plants or ornamental grasses can be planted over the mound to improve effluent filtration.
  • A Mound Septic System has no space limitations. This means it can be placed anywhere on the property without worrying about the size of the lot.
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Cons of a mound septic system

A mound septic system has some serious drawbacks which are:

  • Mound septic systems do not require gravity. This makes them highly susceptible to backups in the event that any of the components or parts malfunction.
  • Mound septic systems are more expensive than traditional septic tanks. This is because are time consuming, labor intensive and they require highly complex construction,
  • Requires the use of a pump to move the wastewater for treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

In this section of our ‘Mound Septic System Pros and Cons’ article, we have a complied a list of Common FAQS:

Septic mound systems smell compared to conventional septic systems. This is mainly because the mound system is close to the surface.

What type of soil is best for a septic tank? The best soil for a septic tank lies in between gravel and clay.

A typical Septic mound system is designed to last for 20-30 years. Regular septic maintenance helps prolong the lifespan of a septic mound system.

The answer to this question is yes. Let’s clarify this in more detail. The “mound” is not pumped. The mound is the raised or elevated gravel where the septic waste water and effluent undergoes a rigorous filtering process. On the other-hand, the septic tank needs to be pumped out every 3 to 5 years. Pumping or cleaning out the septic tank helps prolong the lifespan of your septic mound.

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The question of whether septic mound systems freeze is a common one among homeowners. The answer is, yes, septic mound systems do freeze. If you live in a cold climate, it is important to know how to protect your septic mound system from freezing. You also need how to thaw frozen septic lines.

Mound Septic System Pros and Cons: Final Thoughts

A mound septic system is a type of septic system that uses a mound of soil or gravel to filter and dispose of the wastewater when a traditional or conventional septic system can not be installed due to poor soil quality. I hope you found our “Mound Septic System Pros and Cons” article useful!