SepticWhat To Expect: Septic System Replacement

If you are reading this page you may be interested in having your septic system replaced, if you are still shopping around we would be excited to provide you with a free quote! You can do that by calling us or stopping by, or simply using our Get Quote Page. If you recently had your septic system replaced we recommend reading our Do’s & Don’ts to properly care for your system. You may also be reading this because you are about to have your septic system replaced, and that is exactly why we made this page! Having your septic system replaced is no “small task” so it is very important to best understand what to expect, how to maneuver through this process, and ensure you and your family are as prepared as can be to welcome your new septic system under your umbrella of home care.

There are many types of septic systems, these can range from aerobic treatment units, performance-based treatment systems, and the ever so amazing conventional septic tank. A lot like the physical septic tank, your drain field sometimes referred to by the community as a leach field, also comes in many shapes, sizes, and designs. They are all unique and all have their own pros and cons that they bring to the table. Septic systems also have other additional mechanics that can make them even more special! These add-ons can range from smart programmable timed dosing systems to standard pump tanks or lift stations, including alarms and other panels, trash tanks or built-in trash compartments, and more! The septic world is truly amazing!

No matter what system you may be having installed the preparation, installation, inspection, and final stages of system installation are generally the same. This is outside of pricing, and other items you may need to prepare for if your system is requiring specific needs, like having electrical installed and prepared for connection, or setting up and signing your maintenance contract for example. If you are unsure if these extras apply to you please reach out to us right away so we can go over the details of your system with you! If you are only replacing your septic tank, or only replacing your drain field, or maybe even something else, it’s possible some of these general procedures may not apply to you, in that event please read around them or give us a call so we can discuss this with you in further detail.

Ensure you and your family are as prepared as can be to welcome your new septic system under your umbrella of home care…. The septic world is truly amazing! 💩

Attached you will find lots of pictures, these are real pictures taken from many septic system replacements that we have done right here at Drain Mechanics, some include specialty items like those discussed above, and others do not. These pictures are included to help paint the picture of what can “generally” be expected from a septic system replacement, it is a very case-by-case procedure. We have found that no one else in the industry is preparing their customers for this process, so although they may already be frustrated with knowing they need to replace their system, well now they have to endure all of the things that come with such an invasive, disruptive project with no pre-warning.

What To Expect: 

* Please read each phase of this project, if there are any steps below that do not coincide with your needs, please reach out to us right away so we may discuss them prior to continuing with your installation process.

  • Preparation – Once you have received your quote and have begun your paperwork, you will be required to submit a valid and accurate survey/site plan of your property, you may be able to find this in the paperwork you have from when you purchased your home if you do not have this, you will want to reach out to a surveyor or mapper and have one created. You will also be required to sign an owner authorization form, as well as sign your approved estimate provided by Drain Mechanics less than 30 days ago, to begin working.
  • Permitting – Once we have received everything we will begin designing your new system as well as preparing all of your documentation for permitting. During this time we will be configuring the best location for your system, if you have large trees, or small trees these may need to be removed prior to installation, you may have walkways, sheds, or other structures/obstacles that have been placed after the original septic system was installed that may need to be moved, or corrected prior to installation. Once everything has been submitted to the Health Department we will create your folder and begin watching the status of your permit. The permitting times are always changing, but they can range from 4 weeks to 4 months depending on many factors. During this time your site evaluation will be performed by a Certified Environmental Health Professional, you should expect a visit by the CEHP to come onto your property and perform this evaluation, this includes measuring, inspecting, and even digging soil borings for inspection of soil and water tables, once complete and written up, all of the results of their findings will decide the ins and outs of your new system! How Cool?!
  • Scheduling – Once we have received your permit we will reach out to inform you of your new permit, we will also discuss with you your schedule and availability for us to perform the installation. During this process, you should receive a copy of your permit and proposed site plan, if you did not receive these documents, it is your responsibility to request them and ensure the system is being installed within your desired requests, if any. There will be the presence of utility locate services coming onto your property to properly mark, label, and point out any underground utilities that may be at risk of damage during the work. During the scheduling process, you can expect to have your septic tank (if you are getting a new one) dosing tank, or ATU (if you are getting a new one) to be delivered to your property ahead of time, not always, but do expect this. These systems can be very large and space demanding, they are definitely an eye-sore when they are sitting above ground. Depending on your site evaluation and received permit, we may deliver septic sand or park an on-site haul-off trailer on your property. We generally also drop off prior to installation, the heavy equipment needed to perform the work, please refer to the pictures to have an idea of what these machines look like, and how this may affect your family. This is being listed to properly prepare you for this potential nuisance.
  • Installation – Some installs will require more excavation than others, but as a standard across the board we will need to dig a large area as per your permit, sometimes 600, 700 square feet or more when including a septic tank installation/replacement. If your system requires a pump, aeration, or any other electrically dependent system you will need to have your licensed electrician perform this work. The size of your system is determined by your home’s gallons per day usage, the larger the home, the larger the septic system will be. This excavation process includes digging down several feet in a very large area, bringing in large pump trucks to pump your existing septic tank, heavy equipment, and jackhammers to demolish and properly abandon your septic tank, we will then excavate and haul off the soiled debris, this is also true for your drain field, if any part of your new system is going over your existing system we will need to use the heavy machinery to dig down and pull out all these spoils, bad soils, rocks, piping, chambers, and any other unsuitable materials that may need to be loaded up and hauled off. Expect and prepare for dump trucks coming and going, septic installers working around your home, if your system is in the back of your home and our path of least resistance means going through your yard to get to the back, it is most definitely expected to have even more damage to the property and landscaping. These damages include sod and grass being destroyed, plants, planters, flower beds, and much more. We recommend removing and setting aside or properly storing out of the way, anything that you do not want at risk. During the installation process, we would like for you to prepare and expect to have soil, sand, and other debris scattered in the yard and/or in piles, this may be seen as an eye sore, but it is very temporary and it is part of the process. Once your dig-out is complete we will then haul in new suitable soils that will be placed in the bottom, middle, and cover of your drainfield, we will then install your septic tank (if applicable), build your header or distribution box, and place your drain field materials, once complete you are ready for the next phase. (Please note these descriptions are meant to prepare you for what is to come with your new installation, our goal is to provide peace of mind during this process because you are expecting everything to come)
  • Will I Have Facilities? – During installation, we will ensure your existing septic tank carries the usage of your home until we place your new unit, there will be a small 1 to 2 hour window that we will require the cease of water usage so we can move your home over to your new tank, we will coordinate and prepare you for this time, once completed you may resume to normal water habits, being mindful of water usage until we complete the installation.
  • Inspection – With your new system installed in the ground and functional we will phone in your system inspection, this will consist of a site visit from a Certified Environmental Health Professional to inspect and confirm everything is installed to permit, properly working, functional, and to Florida Rule, abiding by all local and State requirements.
  • Cover & Grade – Upon completion of the approved inspection we will move to cover your system with new suitable soils, this will most likely be brought in by the truckload. We will cover the system per rule and use our machinery to grade out what is left in the yard, pathways used to travel along the property, and any other working sites on your property that were used to perform the installation are expected to be left with no sod, or grass. Upon completion of this phase, your once green yard may just be a large sand/dirt field. This is normal and expected. Please prepare for you to perform these repairs to your yard and landscaping as needed/desired. Some system types will require sod placement or depending on slopes, your yard may be eligible for hay and seed, if no cover is required we still recommend sod for cosmetic purposes as well as proper growth of a new beautiful yard. If having nice landscaping is important in your household, prepare for all areas we worked in, including the paths to and from the system to be in need of repair and sod.

* Our What To Expect Page is designed to help prepare you and your family for what is to be expected when getting a new septic system installed, it does not cover every single detail involved, and it does not include everything that your specific system or permit may require. It is a general blanket of what we recommend for you to expect, and prepare to happen during this process. This is a very invasive, intrusive process that is better digested with some up-front warnings and preparation given. We hope that this has provided that. If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to reach out to us: We are available by Phone: 321-351-2033, Email:, or Come On By! 2681 Palm Bay Rd. Palm Bay, Fl. 32905

Congratulations on your new system!

With your new system installed, we recommend reading our Do’s and Don’ts Page to give your system the best life possible, and even more importantly please check out our other pages:

How to care for your septic system page. Protect your home and care for your septic system. Use our Septic System Owner’s Guide. (Coming Soon)

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