How to Avoid a Thick Biomat on Your Drain Field

Drain fields can work efficiently for years with a well-maintained septic system. Waste water or effluent from the septic tank is slowly delivered to the drain field, filtering down through the soil to the ground water below. As long as the septic tank is performing correctly and the soil is the right consistency, the only organic material growing on top of a drain field should be grass. When a thick biomat appears, it is a sign of trouble with your septic system.

What is a Biomat?

Bacteria are needed to help breakdown waste, both in the septic tank and in the drain field. A biomat is a formation of anaerobic bacteria, the type of bacteria that do not need oxygen to survive. This slimy layer can build up in the trenches of a drain field. The bacteria in the biomat can feed off debris in the water, helping break it down further as it filters into the soil. Aerobic bacteria also are in the drain field, which feed on the biomat and keep it from getting too thick.

If a biomat gets too thick, it can cause problems. Waste water can get trapped above ground and the filtering system suffers. This can occur if there is too much water in the drain field for the aerobic bacteria to survive. It can also happen when the waste water coming from the septic tank has too much solid waste. To avoid a thick biomat, proper maintenance is needed, including:

  • Avoiding putting too much water through the septic system
  • Keeping grease and fat out of the drains
  • Keep food out of your drains – do not use a garbage disposal
  • Get your septic tank pumped when needed

If you have a thick biomat on your drain field, you need to address it before it causes a septic backup. Contact your local septic service for an inspection to determine the best option to restore balance to your drain field.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(678) 873-7934

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