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Old 10-21-2019, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Union
22 posts, read 10,595 times
Reputation: 11

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Hi, can anyone recommend a company to do an inspection of a septic system for a home buyer?

Is anyone familiar with this process and can you share your experience? Is it simply a pass or fail (repair or replace)? Is it more nuanced e.g. pass but system nearing end of life, recommend replace in 2-3 years? How can this affect the purchase?

Interested in a home with an original septic (likely approaching 40 years). No details on type. Recently serviced. Just want to know how to approach buying this home or even if I should just avoid altogether.

Thanks.
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Old 10-22-2019, 06:44 PM
 
296 posts, read 149,039 times
Reputation: 475
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaems View Post
Hi, can anyone recommend a company to do an inspection of a septic system for a home buyer?

Is anyone familiar with this process and can you share your experience? Is it simply a pass or fail (repair or replace)? Is it more nuanced e.g. pass but system nearing end of life, recommend replace in 2-3 years? How can this affect the purchase?

Interested in a home with an original septic (likely approaching 40 years). No details on type. Recently serviced. Just want to know how to approach buying this home or even if I should just avoid altogether.
A 40 year old septic system is at or near the end of its life, no matter how well it was cared for, how good the soil is, etc... Most septic pumping companies do inspections as well, which normally consist of pumping the tank, inspecting the tank, and utilizing a camera to assess the condition of the distribution box, laterals, etc... In our case we had our septic inspection, which revealed that the septic was at the end of its life, so we offered the seller asking price provided that he replace the septic entirely at his cost, which he did.
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Old 10-22-2019, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Union
22 posts, read 10,595 times
Reputation: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Swamp_Yankee View Post
A 40 year old septic system is at or near the end of its life, no matter how well it was cared for, how good the soil is, etc... Most septic pumping companies do inspections as well, which normally consist of pumping the tank, inspecting the tank, and utilizing a camera to assess the condition of the distribution box, laterals, etc... In our case we had our septic inspection, which revealed that the septic was at the end of its life, so we offered the seller asking price provided that he replace the septic entirely at his cost, which he did.
Thank you, very helpful. Have seen your other posts on this topic as well, so thanks.
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Old 10-23-2019, 07:37 PM
 
296 posts, read 149,039 times
Reputation: 475
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaems View Post
Thank you, very helpful. Have seen your other posts on this topic as well, so thanks.
Not a problem. Don't let a septic scare you out of rural living here in NJ. There is not enough discussion of septic systems on this board. Living with and maintaining a septic system is a little more involved than simply paying a sewer bill, but living out here is worth it:

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Old 10-24-2019, 09:57 AM
 
3,789 posts, read 3,270,003 times
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In order for the inspection company to really examine a septic tank, it must be pumped out. Being nearby when they're pumping the tank is not for the faint-hearted.
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Old 10-24-2019, 01:56 PM
 
Location: NJ
4,362 posts, read 9,513,046 times
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Septic tanks really aren't a big deal as long as they are pumped and maintained regularly. My parents have been living in their house for over 40 years and it still has the original septic. I think it's just the idea of having raw sewage stored on your property that freaks most people out.
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Old 10-24-2019, 05:24 PM
 
296 posts, read 149,039 times
Reputation: 475
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wells5 View Post
In order for the inspection company to really examine a septic tank, it must be pumped out. Being nearby when they're pumping the tank is not for the faint-hearted.
Hyperbole. The average septic tank smells no worse than a damp musty basement. The contents of a septic tank (much like what flows through the average municipal sewer) is more than 90% liquid. Solids comprise an exceedingly small portion of what goes into the tank.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ansky View Post
Septic tanks really aren't a big deal as long as they are pumped and maintained regularly. My parents have been living in their house for over 40 years and it still has the original septic. I think it's just the idea of having raw sewage stored on your property that freaks most people out.
Which is:

1. Silly.

2. Wholly inaccurate. "Raw sewage" is only "stored" for a period of hours or days in the tank, where solids settle out while liquid effluent flows to the laterals and then into the ground where it is filtered by layers of soil, rock, and other underlying strata, eventually making its way back into the aquifer from whence it came. This is merely a smaller, self contained version of the water cycle that takes place in larger water and sewer systems. Municipal water systems either source their water from surface bodies of water such as reservoirs or rivers, or underground sources (wells). That water is then used by the system and makes its way into the sewer system. That sewage is then treated and either discharged to a surface body of water or reinjected into the ground.
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Old 10-24-2019, 08:13 PM
 
Location: Weehawken, NJ
172 posts, read 181,517 times
Reputation: 164
If it only has 2-3 years left than I would suggest asking the seller to replace it before you close or asking for a price reduction reflecting the cost to replace the septic. During our search, in Morris/Sussex county, we walked away from 2 homes for having a failing system that the owners would not fix. We used CSI LLC and I would recommend them if they service your area.

Classic Septic Inspections
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Old 11-14-2019, 06:58 PM
 
Location: Union
22 posts, read 10,595 times
Reputation: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by xism View Post
If it only has 2-3 years left than I would suggest asking the seller to replace it before you close or asking for a price reduction reflecting the cost to replace the septic. During our search, in Morris/Sussex county, we walked away from 2 homes for having a failing system that the owners would not fix. We used CSI LLC and I would recommend them if they service your area.

Classic Septic Inspections
Thanks and sorry for the late reply. I didn't get any notifications for the additional replies.

I definitely would want to get a clear picture of the status of this 40 y/o septic in the house I'm interested in. If at end of life I am hoping I can get a ballpark of what it would cost to replace and figure things out from there. Like the house a lot but have heard replacing a septic can be as much as $50k. Seller claims they just had septic tested and repaired fwiw. Apparently the current buyer is still asking for a big credit and the deal may fall through.

Thanks again for all the info, everyone.
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Old 11-15-2019, 06:41 AM
 
Location: NJ
4,362 posts, read 9,513,046 times
Reputation: 3606
Quote:
Originally Posted by Swamp_Yankee View Post

2. Wholly inaccurate. "Raw sewage" is only "stored" for a period of hours or days in the tank, where solids settle out while liquid effluent flows to the laterals and then into the ground where it is filtered by layers of soil, rock, and other underlying strata, eventually making its way back into the aquifer from whence it came. This is merely a smaller, self contained version of the water cycle that takes place in larger water and sewer systems. Municipal water systems either source their water from surface bodies of water such as reservoirs or rivers, or underground sources (wells). That water is then used by the system and makes its way into the sewer system. That sewage is then treated and either discharged to a surface body of water or reinjected into the ground.
Not sure what you mean by this. If everything just "settles out" (whatever that means) then there would be no need to have the tank pumped out every year or two.
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