Thursday, December 31, 2015

Flooding Issues: Dealing with Flooded Home Septic Systems

Contact: Bob Schultheis, natural resource engineering specialist
Headquartered in Webster County
Tel: (417) 859-2044

MARSHFIELD, Mo. – Home septic systems are being negatively impacted by the wet weather conditions in Missouri according to Bob Schultheis, natural resource engineering specialist with University of Missouri Extension.

“Our office is getting a lot of questions by phone and email about the same basic issue,” said Schultheis.

Question: What recommendations do you have for homeowners that have flooded septic systems?

Answer: The absorption drain field after the septic tank is not going to work until the soil becomes unsaturated.

If the septic system’s drain field is flooded or saturated, plug all basement drains and drastically reduce water use in the house. Don’t run water from a basement sump pump into the septic system or let water from roof gutters or the sump pump discharge into the drain field. Plug floor drains if flooding is occurring next to the house because water can flow back through the septic system. Unbolt toilets from the floor and plug the outlet pipe, shower drains, washing machine and basement sink drain.

Here are two links with more details.

What to do with Flooded Septic Systems

Managing Your Septic Tank During/Following a Flood

MU Extension programs focus on the high-priority needs of Missourians to improve lives, communities and economies by providing relevant, responsive and reliable educational solutions. Each county extension center, with oversight by locally elected and appointed citizens, is your local link to practical education on almost anything. More information on this topic is available online at


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