With a strong movement towards more eco-friendly practices, have you ever thought that dirtiest appliance in your home could also be the cleanest?
Many homeowners become concerned during the buying/selling aspect of property ownership, as well as, hearing that their septic has failed. The smell alone can be horrifying. As the planet’s population grows, on-site wastewater treatment (that’s your septic system!) is of most importance. Studies are being conducted and complete in regards to E.coli and B.Theta (both human gut bacteria that occur naturally) entering our waterways. Individual home septic tanks can become overloaded during the rainy season or just plain fail, or some homes are still “treating” their sewage with cesspools dating back to the 50’s and 60’s, all of which allow untreated human wastes to flow into drainage ditches and nearby surface and ground waters.
Ecoflo Biofilter is a high-performance effluent filtering system. This system can be applied to any size household or multi-family building. But first we need to start at the beginning…
Standard sand mounds are also a filtering system. At a height of about 4 feet and a footprint of 2500 square feet, aesthetically, a traditional sand mound could be an eye sore. Once a sand mound is installed, ‘it’s like welding the hood shut on a brand-new vehicle.’ With this standard system, the effluent entering the absorption area (the physical structure of the sand mound), is minimally treated sewage with particulates that build up and then are flushed into your inaccessible sand mound. Installation of a sand mound requires +/- 500 tons of material, loaded into 40 trucks, which drive over your property to the exact location of your sand mound. This can and will create ruts in your lawn. The last item to note, in PA, is that a standard sand mound requires 20” of quality existing soil. This means, if you happen to live in an area where depth to bedrock (impenetrable) or depth to redox features (hang up of surface infiltrating water OR a high-water table); 20” of quality cleaning soil (to treat that sewage) can be hard to find. Once the filtering system has failed or has reached the end of its life, a whole new system will be required to be installed.
Ecoflo Biofilter is a treatment and polishing system. The effluent that leaves the Biofilter is of ‘swimming pool quality’ BEFORE it enters the absorption area. This means that the effluent has a reduction in coliforms (the one that makes you sick) and TSS (or total suspended solids/particulates) and overall biologic load entering your closed but smaller mound. The related mound structure has a reduced footprint of 1000 square feet and only 2 feet of height, significantly decreasing the impact on your property, meaning more usable property! Installation of the mound associated to the Ecoflo, equates to about 5 (instead of 40!) truckloads of material tracked across your property. The Ecoflo Biofilter is an ACCESSIBLE structure! Once a year, a trained technician, which Penn’s Trail can provide, comes out to inspect and maintain the passive treatment media of your Biofilter. About every ten years, the renewable, natural media can be completely replaced with fresh coconut fibers. These fibers (an unused byproduct of the all the coconut we now eat and drink) are used to support a healthy colony of bacteria to clean your effluent BEFORE it enters the absorption bed. So, when the filtering media has reached the end of its life, a trained technician opens the hatch, removes the waste product, and replaces with new media, within an afternoon!
(Note: This Micromound is NOT an At-Grade system, which follows a EcoFlo, but the dimension are the same)
So…after all this gathered knowledge from Certified SEO’s (that’s a Sewage Enforcement Officer-yes that exists!), soil scientists, biologists and just plain environmentally friendly people, what decision will you make when you grass comes up greener?
Image One: Carroll County Health Department, Maryland.gov
Image Two:Penn State Extension, extension.psu.edu