Find Out Online If Seepage Pits Are Allowed at Your Site in Arizona

Are you looking at installing a septic system for your project?  Do you want to find out if you can choose seepage pits for disposal?

New ADEQ Webpage Shows Basin and Range Areas Where Seepage Pits Are Allowed in Arizona

The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, ADEQ, has a web page that can show you the answer to the question “Are Seepage Pit Tests Allowed?”  Click here to access the web page.

several seepage pits

Arizona Seepage Pit Rule Requirements

The Arizona Administrative Code (state rules) state that seepage pits are only allowed in areas with “valley-fill sediments in a basin-and-range alluval basin.” (AAC R18-9-A311.B.1)

Alluvial basins are typically the areas within valleys that have been filled with hundreds of feet of fill soil washing down from the surrounding mountains.

These areas typically have groundwater several hundred feet below the surface so a seepage pit septic system will have plenty of soil to provide filtering and treatment before the water reaches the groundwater below.

ADEQ Online G.I.S. Map Shows Limits for Seepage Pits

The ADEQ website asks a user to enter the latitude and longitude for a site and optional Owner, Address, and Parcel number.

After the user clicks “Submit,” the Latitude and Longitude are used to locate the site on the G.I.S. map that also shows the boundaries of the basin and range alluvial areas.

The map appears with an X marking the project site and light orange or peach coloring for areas where seepage pits are allowed.

Latitude and Longitude Required to Find Site for Seepage Pit Septic System on Map

To find the latitude and longitude, here are several websites:

Example Showing Seepage Pit is Not Allowed

Here is an example of a site that we recently checked in Phoenix to find out if seepage pits would be allowed (they are not and it is near some hills with rock outcroppings):

Lat: 33.5577

Long: -112.0466




“How to Manage and Maintain Your Septic System?”

A lot of people in the world do not know how to care and maintain their septic System.  Septic systems are found in both rural and urban areas and maintenance is important for both areas..  Urban areas will likely have more concentrated areas with septic systems making it critical for proper maintenance.

Problems may occur due to insufficient maintenance for Septic System

Most rural homes use some type of septic system to treat household waste water.  These systems generally are economical and effective in treating and disposing of the waste water.  However, your septic system must be properly designed, installed, and maintained to reduce possible harmful impacts to the groundwater that supplies your drinking water, your neighbors’ drinking water, or to surface waters such as a nearby stream.  Although a well-functioning septic system poses little risk to drinking water, a poorly operating system is a potential source of disease-causing bacteria, viruses, household chemicals, and nitrates.  If significant amounts of any of these enter drinking water, they could produce

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Secrets of Septic Tanks with Leach Trenches

What is a Trench Leach Field Septic System?

Septic leach trenches for disposal of septic tank effluent are 1 to 3 feet wide trenches that have up to 4 feet of aggregate rock with a perforated pipe installed down the middle of the trench on the top of the rock.  The pipe is connected to the distribution box and the septic tank outlet pipe.  Typically the aggregate rock filling the trench has a diameter of ¾ to 2-inches and has been washed to remove fines.  The water leaving the septic tank drains to the perforated pipe in the trench where it leaks out the holes.  It then is absorbed in the soil at the bottom and on the sides of the leach trench.  Treatment of the septic tank effluent water also occurs in the soil as microbes grow and use the organics and nutrients.  Physical filtering of the water also occurs in the soil.

Where can they be used?

In Arizona the state rules allow a leach trench system to be used after a septic tank when the site and soil do not have any limiting conditions.  There must be

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The Importance of a Septic system

Living a rural lifestyle has its benefits for those who wish to avoid the busy atmosphere of the city. It also means that certain services aren’t available such as access to a public sewer system. In some city areas, sewer is not available due to the cost or geographic hurdles like rocky ground or hilly terrain. For these situations a septic system with septic tank is used. Regular maintenance is a good idea for keeping the tank and the rest of the system in good working order.

If you currently own or are looking at buying a house with a septic system, you may be wondering, “Why septic tank servicing so important?” As the tank accepts waste water, oil, fat, solids, and scum accumulate in the tank. Failing to have it pumped every 3-5 years can lead to a clogged tank and filter eventually causing failure of the disposal system.

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Conventional Septic Systems in Arizona

In conventional septic systems the water flows by gravity from the house to the septic tank then to the disposal system.  The disposal system is installed in soil where the water is treated by bacteria and other microbes along with physical filtering by the soil.

A conventional septic system is installed where there are no limiting conditions at the site or in the subsurface.  Conventional septic systems rely on the soil to provide treatment in addition to the septic tank.

In Arizona, there are four types of conventional septic disposal systems allowed under the state rules (A.A.C. R18-9-E302).

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The “price” of changing a Septic System

You wish that you never have to change your septic program, but if you get to the factor where it is necessary then you have no selection. The price to fix the scenario and to eventually change your septic program is excellent and goes far beyond cash. Take a look at the price so you will have a better concept of why you should never let it go that far.


If the issue has gotten to the factor where your septic program has unsuccessful then spend is leaks into the earth around the house. At this factor you need to get in touch with the wellness office. They will need to determine the scenario and will be able to provide you assistance as to what else to do.

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Why Do I Need To Hire Someone To Pump My Septic System?

Did you know that as a home or business owner you are responsible for maintaining your septic system?

Did you know that maintaining your septic system is part of the investment in your home or business?

Did you know that you should periodically have someone inspect your septic tank and pump it out?

If successfully maintained, your septic system can offer long-term, successful treatment and disposal of wastewater. If you do not maintain your septic system, you might need to spend thousands of dollars to replace it.  A leaking tank can pollute groundwater that might be used for drinking water.  A failing drain field can cause sewage to surface and may spread disease, cause an awful smell, and become a breeding place for insects.  Sewage may back up into your house damaging carpets or floors.

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Looking for a quality company to design and permit your septic system? The wait is over.

Phoenix, Arizona (January 12, 2012)- Are you tired of scanning those directories looking for a quality company to hire to design and permit your septic system? The wait is over!  Professional Engineer Kathy Mills of Mills Engineering has over 20 years of experience designing water and wastewater systems.

The internet makes it easy to learn about any topic – we can learn all about water and waste water systems by surfing! Not only that, we can easily find experienced engineers to help us solve our problems, make it through the regulatory maze, or assist with our new construction project.  We can become familiar with the company and engineer by reading blog posts, getting referrals from our network of friends and family, and watching videos.  These things make us comfortable about our decision on who to hire.

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Secrets of Septic Tanks with Seepage Pits

What is a Seepage Pit?

It is a 4, 5, or 6 foot diameter hole drilled straight down 30 to 50 feet.  Typically it is filled with ¾ to 2-inch diameter rock (just like a leach trench) with a perforated pipe installed in the middle of the hole, and continues to the bottom.  The pipe is connected to the outlet pipe from the septic tank with a tee or elbow.  The water leaving the septic tank goes into the perforated pipe to the bottom of the pit and leaks out the holes.  It then is absorbed in the soil at the bottom and on the sides of the seepage pit.

Where can they be used?

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Choosing an Engineer for Your Water or Wastewater System Project?

When you decide where to buy a home and to live, what do you consider? Most likely you looked for a community where the citizens are happy, healthy, and comfortable. Part of being all three is having a clean, safe, and constant water supply and clean environment. Many of us take for granted that when we turn the faucet on we will be able to get a glass of water or that when we flush the toilet our waste will be carried away and treated somewhere without polluting the environment. The design of the infrastructure is the water or wastewater engineer’s specialty.  Other titles are environmental engineer, sanitary engineer, or civil engineer.  Their job is to design and build the tools, equipment, and infrastructure that provide us with clean water as well as to monitor the safety of our water and protect our environment.

Good engineers have experience and skills to complete your project efficiently and accurately.  They know how and when to multitask; they can focus on details as well as the big picture; they interpret requirements and make good judgments; they make educated decisions about risk; they are team players and listen to your opinions, needs, and goals; they brainstorm, whittle down to viable options, and make decisions; they empower, mentor, and teach others; and they take and give constructive criticism.


How do you choose the right engineer for your project?

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