Dye Tests

Buying or selling a home is one of the biggest decisions most of us will face in our life. Whether you're buying or selling, you've got a lot of homework to do, and inspecting the septic tank can be some of the most important. Many cities in the US require a dye test on the septic tank before selling a property. And if you are a buyer, this test might also be needed before any financing is approved.

What are Dye Tests?

Simply put, a fluorescent dye is poured into the home’s drain and then traced to make sure that the septic system is not leaking and can handle the volume of waste put through it.

First, the dye is flushed down a toilet, introducing it to the septic system. Then water is run into the system. This is usually done by letting water from a faucet drain into the tank, which will carry the dye with it and send it into the absorption field.

This test gives a visual clue of any leaks. Perforated or disconnected pipes will let the dye solution seep into the ground surface, and the same can occur at the inlet of the tank or around the distribution boxes. The dye will usually take a few hours to be visible on the ground, but sometimes it can take two or three days. If there is any dye observed, a more thorough inspection might be required for further diagnosis.

Dye Test Limitations

For a dye test to be useful and give an accurate result, the septic tank must be full and not pumped recently. Some home sellers do not disclose that the tank was recently pumped, and this can compromise the test.

Another factor that can lead to inacurate test results is the visibility of the ground surface. Since this is a visual test, not being able to observe the dye can mean an incorrect result. The dye can be obscured by many factors, such as overgrown weeds or grass, snow, or dead leaves.

Dye tests are just one of the many tests that can be done to verify the condition of a septic pump. It is an excellent method to use when there is water above the ground since it can confirm if it is originating from the septic tank and not elsewhere. While flushed dye that appears on the ground will indicate a faulty septic system, not seeing any dye does not ensure that the system is working properly, so additional inspection should be done if you want to be sure the tank is in optimal condition.

Call Us For Your Next Dye Test

If you are going to buy a new home, give us a call and schedule a septic tank inspection. We will make sure the tank is in working condition and let you know if any issues need to be fixed. If you are selling your home and need to fulfill the dye test requirement (or just want to reassure any potential buyers), our trained staff will follow the Septic Dye Protocol and provide you with a written report of the dye test result.

Even if you are not selling or buying your home, a dye test can help you find problems with your septic system in an easy, non-invasive way. Once the problems are detected, further tests can be done to locate and fix them.

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Our team of professionals is here to help. Please let us know what we can do to help solve your pipe problems.