How to Connect Pipes to a Septic Tank

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Once you've placed and leveled the septic tank, it's time to install septic tank pipes. Septic tank manufacturers cast inlet and outlet holes into the tank. Many manufacturers make a watertight connection by sealing a rubber boot to the concrete. High water infiltration rates cause septic systems to eventually fail. Installing watertight pipe connections increases a septic system's longevity.

Things You'll Need

  • Excavator
  • Level
  • Shovel
  • Tar sealant
  • Trowel
  • Clean-out assembly
  • 4-inch Schedule 40 PVC pipe
  • PVC primer
  • PVC cement
  • Locate the 4-inch sewer stub installed at the home.

  • Clean the 4-inch sewer stub and clean-out assembly hub with polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, primer. (Clean-outs are required by code and enable future line maintenance.)

  • Coat both the sewer stub and clean-out assembly hub with PVC cement and press together. Twist the clean-out assembly a quarter turn until it is level, and then hold it for 30 seconds.

  • Insert the clean-out assembly onto the stub until you've fully inserted the hub. Twist the pipe a quarter turn to evenly spread the adhesive.

  • Dig a trench with the excavator's bucket from the tank's inlet elevation to the house's plumbing stub. Maintain a 2-percent slope from the house to the tank.

  • Lay the 4-inch schedule 40 pipe into the trench with the pipe markings pointing up until you've filled the entire length of the trench.

  • Clean both ends of each pipe with PVC primer.

  • Coat the pipe end and pipe hub with PVC cement and press them together. Twist their connections a quarter turn and hold them together for 30 seconds. Repeat this process for all of the pipe connections in the trench.

  • Insert the pipe into the inlet opening of the tank until the pipe sticks in about 2 inches. Locate the pipe far enough into the tank that incoming waste water does not follow the tank wall down but free-falls out of the pipe. The pipe must be at least 6 inches from the baffle to prevent clogs from forming.

  • Heat the tar sealant in direct sunlight for 15 minutes.

  • Clean the void between the newly installed pipe and the septic tank concrete with a wire brush to remove any debris.

  • Fill the void between the pipe and the concrete with the tar sealant. Press the sealant into the void with a trowel. If the septic tank has a rubber gasket molded into the tank for the pipe, tighten down on the securing clamp.

  • Back-fill the newly installed pipes with a hand shovel taking care not to disturb them.

Tips & Warnings

  • When applying tar sealant, be sure to allow the concrete to fully dry before applying for better adhesion.
  • When back-filling around the septic tank pipes, take care not to disturb the new pipe-to-tank seal.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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