The Natural Home Building Source
The Natural Home Building Source
The Natural Home Building Source

Residential sewage disposal systems... Infiltrator septic tanks and Infiltrator leach field chambers along with settling basins, effluent filters, director valves, and drywell leach pit kits complete with installation guidelines and practical design tips on how to fix a failed septic system drainage leach field.

The wastewater your home produces is referred to as 'effluent' and consists of blackwater (toilet and garbage disposal waste) and greywater (shower, sink and laundry waste). Effluent flows directly from your household plumbing into a watertight, underground, two compartment septic tank. Solid waste settles into a sludge layer on the bottom and fats float to the top of the first compartment. Between these two scum layers is a zone of clarified liquid effluent which is internally piped to the second compartment of the septic tank for additional settling. As incoming sewage from the house fills the first compartment, clarified liquids are forced to leave the second chamber of the septic tank and flow out to the leach field or leach pit. The typical leach field is a series of chambers or rock filled trenches where effluent is further treated as it slowly percolates through the soil. A leach pit is a deeper, larger hole filled with rock for disposing of wastewater in a smaller footprint. Not as effective treatment as a larger leach field, where sewage percolates slowly over a larger area, leach pits are an alternative for smaller properties only where high seasonal ground water is not present. Greywater from washing machine, sinks and showers contains soaps designed to kill bacteria (clean and disinfect things) and thus discourage optimal septic tank function. You want to encourage helpful good bacteria (digesting anaerobic cultures) to grow in your septic tank and organically treat the waste, not kill helpful bacteria with detergent laden graywater. If allowed by local building department, it is best practice to divert your household greywater to a separate leaching area.

Septic tank design and delivery

Infiltrator Plastic Septic Tanks

Septic system filter basins

Settling Filter Basin

Septic system leach field with Infiltrator chambers

Infiltrator Chambers

Leach pit kit for alternative leach fields and leaching pits

Drywell Leach Pit Kit

Professional geotextile fabric for leach fields, French drains, weeds and roots

Geotextile Soil Fabric

Flow director valve splits 50/50 or all to one side

Flow Director Valve

Cut-away of conventional residential septic tank and chamber leach field system Georgia Co-Operative Extension Service's septic system manual serves as a good outline for any conventional septic tank system

Septic system site plan design tips and installation tricks for installing your own septic tank
and leach field. Plus, practical advice on...  how to repair a failing septic system leach field

Best practice is to install a 1500 gallon effective net-volume two-compartment septic tank. Even when you are allowed to install a smaller tank, it will save money in the long run by having the septic tank pumped less often and a much smaller chance of eventual bio-mat formation in the leach field. Larger tanks retain effluent for a longer time, allowing solids to settle on the bottom and grease to float to the top. Plus, a larger tank will allow for adding of bedrooms later without the county requiring a larger septic tank. Every county has its own unique regulations with equations and definitions that can change yearly and always are open for interpretation. Slower percolation rates due to poorly draining soil with clay, bedrock, high ground water, proximity to a creek, or other complications require larger leach fields. There are two methods of calculating the minimum absorption area for a leach field. Traditionally, you dig an eight foot deep test inspection hole in the area of the intended leach field to allow building inspector, or your local engineer, to physically examine the soil and determine its Long Term Acceptance Rate. Or you can have a local soil testing firm perform a percolation test to clock the speed of your soil's capacity to absorb liquids. Local building code dictates the equation used to calculate how many square feet of leach field is required based upon the speed of percolation, composition of the soil, and LTAR. The Georgia Co-Op Extension Service's classic conventional septic system manual is recommended reading for understanding the basics of septic systems. A general rule-of-thumb to use when estimating is one square foot of leach field, per gallon of effluent, per day, in normal soils that percolate relatively well.

Save money by renting a backhoe and installing your own plastic septic tank for your home sewage system.
Should local code dictate installing a concrete septic tank, have it seal-coated well and try to avoid rectangular vaults. The rounded end, hockey rink shape, is much stronger. Unlike concrete, plastic tanks are not affected by high ground water and saturated soils which will eventually erode concrete, forcing replacement. Plastic has many advantages over concrete in addition to durability in wet locations: consistent quality, portability without a crane truck, and three-way inlet and outlet ports. Polyethylene tanks will never crack and leak and they are easily moved around by two people, saving money on heavy equipment and making difficult locations easier to build. In most of the country, local regulatory officials allow homeowner-builders to submit a site plan and pull their own installation permits. Save money by renting a backhoe and installing your own septic system! Stamped, engineered, septic system plans are typically not necessary unless your property percolation test was extreme (greater than 60 minutes per inch or less than 5 minutes per inch); or the site has seasonal groundwater; or there is bedrock or unsuitable soil less than four feet below the proposed leach field; or if the ground slope is in excess of 30% in the area of the proposed leach field. Engineered systems require a local professional engineer to approve (stamp) your site's septic tank and leach field plans. Anyone can draw up their own septic system plan, but legal liability then lies exclusively with your regulatory officials and they often defer to a licensed and insured local engineer. This releases the local government from future legal liability for your extreme septic system's failure. What is code in my area? is a uniquely local question and often changes yearly and varies from county to county in some states, so you need to check and see what is required on your property. Please note that we are not an engineering firm and we do not supply stamped, engineered plans, but we do consult for no charge with purchase of any complete septic system. Even professionals with 30 years in the business can get too tied up in 'how we've always done it' to realize simple improvements can make a huge difference in system performance and longevity. Regardless of what local Individual Sewage Disposal System ISDS guidelines will allow you install, best practice is to maintain certain high-quality guidelines for the sake of longevity, if nothing else.

*   When you apply for your building permit, the local health department official will most likely help you design the sewage disposal system and may even offer to have their office perform a soil test (LTAR) in lieu of a percolation test.
This involves digging a soil profile hole which is generally an eight foot deep trench in the area of the leach field. Most building departments wisely require a visual confirmation that there are no problematic soil conditions, groundwater, or bedrock in the area where you intend to put the leach field. But check with your local officials, as you may only need to provide a site plan survey (ILC) of your property (to establish setbacks from buildings, wells, streams, and property lines) and fill out some forms.
*   Your septic system site plan is typically drawn right on top of your property survey showing the septic tank and leach field 'setbacks' with tank 5-10 feet from the house, the leach field at least 20 feet from the house, at least 100 feet away from wells and streams, 25 feet away from dry gulches, and 10 feet away from the property lines. Or whatever the local regulatory officials require, so always check with the county first for minimum setbacks.
*   The home's sewer line drain pipe needs to slope 1/4 inch per foot downhill to the inlet side of the septic tank straight from foundation to septic tank with no bends that might catch sediment. The outlet pipe needs to flow downhill at least 1/8 inch per foot downhill to the leach field, where the septic tank effluent enters a manifold or distribution D box. Finalize pipe slope with a transit. Only use a four foot level to approximate. Beyond the manifold or D box the leach field trenches (for an Infiltrator chamber system) are excavated perfectly level at a depth of at least seven inches below the grade of the manifold pipes or D box (for chambers). And covered with at least one foot of soil atop the trench or chamber. Trenches can be deeper, if the site dictates, but rarely more than three feet below finish grade.
*   If the leach field is uphill from the septic tank (or if the local health regulations simply require it) a lift station is installed in-line after the septic tank. An electric pump in the lift station tank forces effluent out to the leach field every time it fills to a certain level 'dosing'. Most ISDS codes allow field size reductions with dosing or automatic siphons, so there may be a certain advantage to installing a lift station when building on small lots and/or with nearby streams or ponds. We do not sell pumps since they are readily available locally and the installing electrician tends to prefer supplying parts.
*   Never grind up (macerate) your sewage before sending to a septic tank unless absolutely necessary. Pumping treated sewage (after septic tank) up to the leach field with lift station is always an option, but do not macerate (pump) effluent prior to the septic tank. The septic tank operates by digesting solids and settling sludge to the bottom and allowing grease to float to the top of the septic tank. Macerating the sewage before entering the septic tank will create a septic tank without any large solids, just a cloud of ground up sewage particles. When you send these particles out to the leach field, you are bound to eventually clog the soil with bio-mat and then the leach field fails.
*   Never use bleach, drain cleaner, or harsh soaps with a septic system. Bleach and detergents kill the helpful bacteria that thrives in a healthy septic tank to optimally process toilet waste. Lack of proper septic tank bacteria will cause your leach field to fail from excessive bio-mat accumulation.
*   Please... Never use ANY of those septic tank or leach field chemical additives and miracle enzyme cures. Supposedly breaking down fats and solids in the septic tank, in practice, these additives simply allow smaller particulates to pass through the septic filter (hopefully you have one) where they re-unite in the leach field forming a dense bio-mat. At best, they will do no harm to your septic system or the environment, just waste your money. The FDA does not approve of any of them - none of these septic cleaning and/or maintenance products have been proven effective in the long run. The deciding factor should be to ask yourself if you would like to see these additives find their way into your well water. Anything that can supposedly digest raw sewage should scare a person to have in their drinking water and thus their digestive system. A properly designed two compartment properly-sized septic tank is going to operate just fine without any over-hyped additives.
*   Winter freezing is rare with proper installation and constant usage. Always have your tank pumped in the spring, never in the fall, or low bacterial activity may fail to keep the sewage warm. Surface freezing inside a septic tank can be avoided by bedding tanks in at least one foot of gravel (crushed or river rock). Drainage of the area under and around tank and above the tank, with waterproof tarp diverting drainage at least three feet away. If you can keep the water away from the sides of the tank, you can retain more heat in the dry ground and help speed decomposition of waste. In practice, this amounts to backfilling up to top of tank, sloping the ground away (mound) around perimeter, and then laying down a plastic tarp. A good tip is to set down a layer of straw before the tarp - it will cushion against rock damage and provide insulation. In extreme climates, a layer of two or four inch thick extruded polystyrene (EPS) foamboard insulation can be installed below the tarp.
*   If allowed, always divert greywater to a separate leach field (see greywater.html for details). Greywater contains soaps, which are designed to kill bacteria (clean and disinfect things). You want to encourage helpful "good" bacteria (digesting anaerobic cultures) to grow in your septic tank, not kill them with soap laden graywater. If you cannot divert all of your greywater, just diverting the washing machine discharge will make a big difference in performance and eliminate a large portion of a home's effluent, taking the load off your leach field.

Pumping septic tanks and warning to refill immediately afterwards

Check both compartments yearly and pump before enough solids accumulate in first compartment to potentially to spill over into second compartment. Depending upon tank design, this is usually about sixteen inches maximum depth of sediment. Wrap a piece of disposable paper towel around the end of a disposable stick to check solids level in bottom of your septic tank. Pumping a properly sized septic A healthy, properly sized septic tank may need pumped might never need pumped, but not pumping when needed will result in grease and solids getting out to the leach field. Particulates, grease and solids create 'biomat' in the leach field percolation area, eventually causing it to fail and need replacement. Every three to five years is the normal cycle for pumping a septic tank (less often in warmer areas and/or lower usages). Should you live in an extremely cold climate, never have your tank pumped in the fall or winter - only pump in the spring. Septic tank water only avoids freezing through biological/bacterial activity (fecal matter decomposing). Refill your septic tank with water immediately after having it pumped !!! Without water on the inside, an empty septic tank is under extreme stress resisting the weight of backfill around it. This is especially true when soil is wet and when tanks are not properly bedded in plenty of gravel (selective, draining backfill). Stress is critical when sewage pumpers park too close to the tank, so always keep their truck at least 20 feet away. With enough stress, an empty concrete and fiberglass tank will crack, start leaking and eventually have to be replaced. Install an effluent septic filter and spray it off during yearly inspection of tank. Sieve filters keep larger particles from getting out of the tank and compromising the leach field by clogging soil pores and causing failure (bio-mat). Septic filters are cheap insurance, installing easily in the second compartment of your septic tank.

General septic system guidelines and various types of waste treatment

Every septic system (except the cesspool) has two distinct components: Septic Tank to catch solids and Leach Field to dispose of liquid. Cesspools allow direct discharge of sewage (solids and liquid) into a pit, pond or perforated tank where effluent evaporates and leaches down into surrounding soil while solids remain behind. Septic tanks use one of seven treatment area designs to dispose of effluent:

Leach Pits are large gravel filled holes, optimally with a perforated tank in center for discharging effluent. Drywells are a passive (no pump) solution for small/odd lots where a long leach field percolation field is not possible or desired. Leach pits take advantage of surface area around sides of the hole to dispose of large amounts of water in the right soil types. Adding a drywell to a leach pit gives it additional capability to accept large surges at one time. Always allow at least eight or ten feet of undisturbed soil space between pits to ensure maximum percolation and effluent treatment.
Leach Fields are trenches (or rectangular beds) dug in yard and filled with a foot of 3/4" - 1-1/2" gravel and a four inch diameter perforated pipe. The pipe-in-gravel leach line is covered with geotextile fabric (landscaping weed barrier) and then backfilled with a foot or two of native soil atop. Gravity sends effluent to leach field with at least a 1/8 inch per foot drop and then is dispersed into soil evenly with all of the leach field perforated pipe being at the same level.
Chamber Systems are a tried and true advancement in leach field design - arched panels in the trench. Effluent flows into this large open area underneath the yard; the entire bottom of a chamber is open. With no gravel inside, chambers have ample air to help keep the leach field soil aerobic and healthy.
Pressurized Mound Systems make use of an electric pump to force effluent into elevated mound 'constructed soil' systems and distant trenches, beds or chambers. Even distribution of effluent is key to smaller leach field sizing and better treatment of the waste water. Poor soil percolation sites often require pressure distribution constructed sand mounds with two inch diameter pipe drilled with 1/4 inch holes every two feet, or so.
Evapotranspiration / Drip Beds are pressurized systems with smaller holes or nozzles (drip) for even more uniform distribution of waste water, but are prone to plugging from calcification of the nozzles. In areas that do not get snow cover in the winter, long shallow trenches can be run through yard, sending waste water into the root zone near surface. The plants transpire water through growth and some water evaporates being so close to surface, with a smaller portion of effluent percolating down into water table.
Lagoons, Cesspits, and Cesspools are man-made ponds where the effluent percolates and evaporates, often assisted by a fountain or bubbler. Normally reserved for high clay soil areas where percolation is difficult, lagoons can be lined to prevent percolation in a fragile area - evaporation being the only means of disposal. Six foot fencing and a locked gate are standard practice with any lagoon or cesspool due to the legal liability from safety issues.
Constructed Water Treatment Wetlands are shallow lagoons and mainly designed in hot climates since plant life is key. Active plant growth year-round is desired for the constructed wetland plants to help dissipate the nitrogen and truly treat the effluent. Constructed wetlands show the most promise for a carefree low-maintenance treatment area, but you do generally need to live in a non-freezing climate. They are an excellent choice for greywater disposal, taking a major load off the septic tank and leach field system (blackwater only - toilets and dishwasher).

Division stripe for drywell kit

Drywell leach pit kits are $169 with free UPS Ground shipping
Great for fixing a failed leach field or adding capacity to an existing system

Our drywell leaching pit kits are excellent for new septic systems, adding on to one that is too small, or repairing a failed pipe-in-gravel leach field. If you have a failing leach field, there truly is nothing permanent you can do to repair it unless you add additional leach line or drywell pits. Please don't believe those ads for "all natural, biodegradable, miracle cures" - at best you buy a couple of months, at worst you pollute the groundwater and kill local soil organisms with such additives. Septic waste digesters are generally too little, too late and schemes to punch holes in your yard to cure the problem are just that - schemes to take your money. If you want to "revitalize" your leach field health in a more natural way, use industrial strength hydrogen peroxide AFTER flushing the leach field lines. Home use hydrogen peroxide is around 3% strength with pool chemical supply stores selling barrels of 30% strength up to 50%, or more. Highest strength hydrogen peroxide is preferred for cleaning leach fields and the price difference is typically minimal ($8 to $10 per gallon). Please note that 30% strength and above is DANGEROUS AND WILL BURN YOU, so DO NOT transport or use this stuff yourself. Have the pool supply store deliver for your cleaning contractor. HazMat Placards must be posted in your front and rear window when transporting above 30% strength.

Always hire a professional to flush the lines FIRST (power jetting) prior to adding hydrogen peroxide, especially the first time. They locate a cleanout in front of leach field and thread hose with jetted cutting head down through the perforated field pipe, flushing the accumulated bio-mat and any roots OUT of the leach field. This is an important distinction - accumulated bio-mat must be flushed OUT of the leach field lines. You do not accomplish anything by allowing the bio-mat to remain in the lateral pipes (drainage lines). Lacking the proper power jetting head for four inch pipe, you can do a passable job with a high pressure sprayer equipped with disruptor head (full circle shower spray). This is not something you want to try to do yourself. Hire a professional to do the job. The cleanup of tools alone is nasty business.

Lack of venting at the ends (at least) of each leach field lateral line (finger) is the most common cause of leach field failure - no fresh air in the pipes. Drywells are most highly recommended for the end of each lateral line, with two drywells in series the optimal long-term answer. This allows the first drywell to act as a settling catchment, ensuring long-term viability on a failed/failing system by keeping the perforated pipes lines dry most of the time. If you are not professionally pumping and removing the material flushed from septic field fingers (only sensible approach), you end up having to dig to a large hole at end of each lateral line to receive all the flushed bio-mat. Should the ends of fingers not be vented, you have to find them first. Without a detailed survey of leach field location, you must use a metal spike/probe to find the end of each line. Luckily, the ground tends to be softer over the top of your leach field lateral lines. Do not use this hole for your drywell location... the soil will be saturated with bio-mat and is best left well-alone, marked and buried under at least three feet of native soil. Once lines have been flushed, temporarily cap/plug the pipe ends and then pour hydrogen peroxide into cleanout, so it fills the lateral lines. Put the lines under water pressure for a few minutes, if possible. Keep the ends plugged until the hydrogen peroxide has done its job (give it a few hours, if not overnight) and then flush the leach field lines with clear water again for best effect. The same thing it does on a cut, peroxide will do in the leach field lines: loosen up the bio-mat (scab) and restore healthy aerobic (oxygen rich) bacterial culture. Careful now, this is a nasty job and best left to professionals since the biomat sludge is highly contaminated with bacteria galore. If your local code allows, just let the bio-mat drop down into a pit off end of lateral line and cover with soil (and maybe a little lime) later. Trying to catch it in some type of barrel or basket is a nasty mess just waiting to happen. This is a good time to remind everyone that toilet waste is hazardous septic human waste and must be approached with proper safety equipment and plenty of caution. Wear disposable protective clothes with full head/mouth covering, face shield and/or goggles, protected sleeves and gloves. In a pinch, Saran wrap can be put around arms and then securely taped to the gloves.

We do not sell hydrogen peroxide. But your local septic tank pumper-contractor can pour a five or fifteen gallon bucket into the lateral line vents every five years, or so, when you are having the tank pumped. It is good maintenance in a well-ventilated leach field, and as with most fixes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Once a leach field fails (stops percolating), it becomes necessary to flush the accumulated bio-mat out of lateral lines with high pressure water and then add hydrogen peroxide to loosen and aerate soil. "How to fix a leach field" is more involved than just flushing the lateral lines, though. You have to examine why it failed in the first place. The most common reasons for leach field failure are: trying to use a single compartment septic tank, absence of a particulate filter, under-sized leach field, and lack of ventilation in the leach field. Oxygen is very important to leach field health and a drywell with surface vent at end of lateral line is an instant fix for that while greatly increasing the capacity and drying out the lateral lines at the same time. Taking the load off your failing leach field is crucial to any repair. An excellent long-term fix is to add one (or more) of our drywell kits to the end of each leach field lateral line after flushing the pipes: drywell kits. One drywell kit has an initial surge capacity of 48+ gallons before efffluent starts percolating into the surrounding ground. That is the same effective surge capacity as 74 lineal feet of four inch diameter sewer pipe. Adding a drywell kit to the end of each lateral line of the leach field is key since it allows it to dry out between dosings. Without air in the leach field and not given opportunity to dry out between soakings, the leach field is certain to fail again. These amazingly strong plastic leach pit kits can be buried as deep as you need to dispose of household septic effluent. Gravel backfill around and under the drywells will increase the capacity of your leaching pit and extend the serviceable life expectancy. A single drywell with at least two feet of gravel under and around it will dispose of 200+ gallons per day in decent percolating soils, but you cannot have too large of a leaching pit. The more gravel the better for the sake of leach pit longevity. As with all of our products, we'll work closely with you, providing toll-free consultation during construction!

Shown below is a sample standard installation with two drywells in series - bringing sewage in through the lid. Top loading (with vent) ensures maximum surge capacity for the drywell. Please note that venting your leaching pit (or any septic field) is most highly recommended... lack of venting at both ends of lateral lines is the ultimate cause of leach field failure (after lack of proper two compartment filtered septic tank). Oxygen keeps the drainage pit dry and the soil around it healthier. Freezing is rarely, if ever, a problem with running sewage water underground, but you can always cap the vents in deep winter, if need be. We provide all of the fittings pictured with your kit (san tee, riser, coupler, vent and geotextile fabric). The geotextile fabric is included for installation above the gravel layer. It keeps backfill soil from clogging the gravel and is crucial to extending the life of your leach pit.

A single drywell is plumbed as seen on right-hand unit. The four inch inlet pipe comes into side of kit's sanitary tee on the lid, with riser, coupler and vent grate on ground surface. Two drywell kits are installed as pictured, in-series for optimal leach pit longevity. Ordering a second drywell kit for in-series design allows first drywell to act as a sediment catch-basin, with surge overflow eventually cascading over into the second drywell. This is standard and best practice in poorly percolating soils and ensuring leach pit longevity.

Two drywells can be installed in a single leach pit (hole filled with gravel), but it's best practice to have two holes separated by at least six to eight feet of undisturbed soil. Loosen 'scarify or till' soil at least one foot deeper than the base of leach pit before adding gravel. For optimal water percolation, you must avoid compacting 'smearing' soil in base of hole and sides. While possible to install gravel-less, using the soil you just removed from hole for backfill, it always pays to install at least one or two feet of 3/4 to 1-1/2 inch gravel under and around each drywell.

Two drywell kits installed in series

$169 Drywell kits come complete with soil fabric and installation fittings...
*  Free sanitary tee 3-way 4-inch pipe fitting brings liquid in through top of drywell lid
*  Free vent grate slotted green fitting with riser pipe and coupler to properly vent kit
*  Free geofabric 36 square foot for up to 6' by 6' hole prevents dirt & root infiltration
*  Free Shipping via UPS Ground only in the 48 contiguous United States of America
we keep drywell kits in stock for quick shipment by the next business day

Drywell leach pit kit

Drywell Kit with Lid
24 inch diameter by 29 inch tall
Three side panels, lid, 4" S/D inlet tee
green vent grate with riser & coupler
36 sq ft of geotextile soil filter fabric
$169*   Free UPS Ground

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Optional bottom panel for drywell

optional Bottom Panel
not used when disposing of water
Primarily for sump pump installation
or when extra lid support is needed
NEVER drive cars over drywells
$35*  Not Sold Separately
ONLY sold with the drywell kit

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Additional three side for stacking drywells

extra Set of Side Panels
adds 24 inch height for stacking
Three side panels match drywell kit
for a 53 inch tall overall installation
$109*  Not Sold Separately
ONLY sold with the drywell kit

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optional heavy-duty surface drain

optional Surface Drain
heavy-duty 7" by 10" tall yard drain
Place in middle of patio or driveway
and run 4 inch Sch40 pipe to drywell
NEVER drive cars over drywells
$35*  Free UPS Ground

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Drywell kits can be used for small property septic system leach pits

Sewage disposal septic systems are commonly designed as gravel-filled leach pits with drywell(s) on smaller properties. Leach pits disturb much less surface area than a leach field of perforated four inch diameter sewer pipe in a shallow gravel bed. Seasonal groundwater must not be a local issue when designing deeper leach pits. Figuring at least a foot of soil cover atop lid for a yard and at least a foot of gravel underneath for optimal percolation: two drywells stacked atop each other, as pictured here, equates to at least a six and a half foot deep leach pit. Please note two critical design errors in the second sketch... 1) Never install bends in the four inch diameter sewer pipe before the septic tank. Bends after the tank are fine since the water has been filtered of solids, but you don't want to clog the line coming into the tank. 2) always install a cleanout in the sewer pipe immediately after it leaves the home foundation. Should that line clog or freeze, you need a means to access it. Maintain 1/8 to 1/4 inch per foot drop from house to inlet side of septic tank. Any steeper, and water might flow too fast and pass right around toilet waste. From the outlet side of septic tank, effluent can flow downhill at a much steeper angle. Always 'bed' all pipe and tank well, in plenty of gravel. A 6-8 inch layer or 3/4 to 1 inch diameter aggregate is recommended. Gravel ensures accurate pipe slope in trenches since this size crushed rock only compacts about 3% to 5% later. Bedding pipe prevents dips and flat spots where sewage might collect. In a cold climate, it is critical to avoid allowing sodden soil (frost) from touching your pipe and tank. Even in a warm climate, septic tanks are able to maintain healthy bacteria levels and 'digest' sewage more readily when warm. Bedding a septic tank in gravel can makes the difference between having your tank pumped every three years to maybe once every five or six years.

Drywells are often used for smaller footprint leaching pits.

Division stripe for septic settling filter basin

Settling basin for use with septic filter to trap sediment in-line after septic tank

Nothing beats the protection of a nice settling tank with filter, in-line before the leach field. This durable, buried 'vault' is just the right size for any family and has long been a standard part of every system we sell. Solid debris (lint, hair, and dirt) settles to the bottom and grease (fats) float to the top. A priceless tip with any septic or greywater system is to avoid bar soaps, natural or otherwise, since they are often made from refined chicken fat. Liquid soaps are always advised and avoid bleach and borax for better septic tank health and function. Passive, non-electric with no moving parts so as septic effluent flows in, clarified liquid automatically flows out to the leach field. Preserve and protect your septic system leach field longevity by preventing bio-mat formation. Septic leach fields fail when poor septic tank design allows drain lines (laterals) to clog with sediment "biomat forming". Greatly increase the life expectancy any sewage disposal system with a filter to prevent solids greater than 1/16th of an inch from entering and eventually clogging your leach field. Our fitting and filter kit can convert nearly any water tank (barrel, vault, septic, or cistern) into a functional filter basin. Sieve filters extend beneath the scum layer (fats floating on top of tank water), siphoning relatively clear effluent from the middle. External-to-internal flow and sealed, gas-baffled end cap design prevents gas-borne solids (tiny particles) from floating atop gas bubbles and exiting. Click here or on pictures for the settling basin and septic filter detail page.

Our septic filter has a universal hub for use with either SDR35 S/D thin-wall sewer and drain pipe or Sch40 thick wall 4 inch diameter pipe.
Features 80 lineal feet of filtration area for up to 800 gallons per day treatment volume. Built-in gas deflector on the bottom provides secondary 1/2 inch filtration to prevent larger solids from entering inside. Patented flow pattern reduces trapping of solids in the filter by allowing sediment to slough-off and fall back into the tank for further digestion. A series of 1/16 inch horizontal filtration slots, rather than a mesh screen, provides much less surface area for solids to attach themselves. This time-tested filter with settling basin design is self-cleaning in normal use, with a natural sloughing action to prevent bio-mat buildup. Filter features a locking tab to prevent 'floating'. Solids are not allowed to pass-by when tank surges occasionally. This care-free filter design never needs replacing. It has been serving our clients very well for well over twenty years now.

Naturally, check with your local building department for regional regulations regarding monitoring and disposal of septic waste.
We recommend inspecting settling tanks yearly at first. Lay a tarp atop the settling basin lid before backfilling with topsoil or mulch to make it much easier to excavate. PLEASE wear eye protection and gloves, at the very least... Pull the handle (included in kit) and hose the filter off, back into settling tank. Check level of sediment in the bottom of settling basin with a white rag wrapped around the end of a long disposable stick. You may be required to have a licensed septic system pumper remove and haul away the top layer of fats and bottom layer sediment for disposal at your local waste water treatment plant. If you dispose of septic waste on-site, bury underneath at least three feet of topsoil 'cap'. When mixing septic 'sludge' into an active compost pile with machinery, you should cap waste with at least a foot of soil to help avoid contamination. Septic compost piles must be restricted access, with adequate sub-surface drainage, perimeter fencing, and locked gates.

Septic settling filter basin tank shown cut-away with filter  housing installed

inlet hole & fittings are not pictured above

Septic tank or settling basin fittings and filter kit with all parts shown in this photo

* FREE Shipping via UPS Ground to 48 states - we do not ship to APO, US Mail Box, Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Isles, Mexico or Canada.
Price includes the cost of shipping, which runs us nearly $250 these days.

Septic Basin Settling Tank Kit (no filter) is $520
Settling basin kit is 26" diameter by 42" tall and includes: tank with lid, SDR35 and Sch40 rubber grommets for 4 inch inlet and outlet pipes, neoprene lid gasket, and tamper resistant lid fasteners. Filter with housing and handle kit pictured is sold separately for $69 or With tank fittings kit for $160 (see below).

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12 inch Riser Extension for Settling Tank adds $105

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18 inch Riser Extension for Settling Tank adds $150

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Septic Filter with Housing and Handle Kit is $69
Housing tee fits both SDR35 and thicker wall Sch40 4 inch diameter pipe. You never have to replace this septic filter. Just hose it off once a year when you inspect the tank to see if it needs pumped of solids. In normal usage, this septic tank filter schluffs debris for "self-cleaning" operation.

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Septic Tank or Settling Basin Fitting AND Filter Kit $160
Includes the $69 filter with housing and handle, PLUS 4" diameter sewer/drain SDR35 PVC fittings needed for typical tank installation: threaded cleanout, inlet and outlet beveled pipes, rubber seal grommets, inlet tee, three spare couplers, outlet tee housing which fits both 4" SCH40 and SDR35 pipe, and a hole saw kit. Filter housing is ABS plastic, so use a multi-plastic cement when attaching to PVC outlet pipe. Always prime all glue pipe joints first, before cementing.

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This 10 piece hole saw kit is included for free with our tank fitting and filter kit above for $160*. Every installation tends to be unique, so this free hole saw kit allows you to put the inlet, outlet, and inspection holes right where you need them. A nice touch that we continue to include for no extra charge with every tank fitting and filter kit. Trying to cut a round hole by hand or with a jigsaw can be a challenge, at best... risking ruin of the tank

Hole saw kit makes installation of your septic basin kit a breeze.

Click here for the settling basin and septic filter detail page

Septic sieve filter specification and installation details page

With moving water, especially septic tank water with some warmth and biological activity, you don't have to worry about freezing issues with proper installation. Key is a well-bedded tank in plenty of +/- 3/4 inch gravel. In cold climates, install at least one foot of gravel under and around the settling tank to prevent sodden, frozen soil (frost) from touching the tank sides. In extremely cold climates, the settling basin lid and surrounding area can be covered with tarp and 2 inch foamboard insulation and then buried at least one foot under finish grade. While possible to install a 12 inch or 18 inch extension to bury the settling basin deeper, it is not necessary or beneficial to bring the basin lid all the way to the surface. Even in the warmest climates, you should at least cover the lid with mulch to protect plastic from UV sunlight damage and make it easier to uncover when checking tank and filter yearly.

Division stripe for director valve

Flow director valve for splitting water flow 50/50 or all one direction

Flow director splitter valves are far superior to distribution boxes or splitting effluent flow with a tee fitting manifold. Effluent flow can be split 50/50 evenly between the two outlet lines OR alternate the flow 100% to one side or the other. This allows one half of your leach field go fallow for a few months to revitalize soil, prevent overloading, and reduce the growth of bio-mat. Three director valves will allow splitting flow between four separate leach field lines. And seven director valves will allow splitting flow between eight separate leach field lines. You can stagger installations with an even number of diverter valves, splitting flow into unique percentages to dial-in percolation area saturation. Director valves make for a very professional and longer lasting leach field versus using often wildly inaccurate distribution boxes or tee manifolds.

Director Valve Kits are $69 each with discount for quantity
comes with threaded access cap, riser pipe coupler, and flow adjustment handle
FREE Shipping to 48 states - in stock for quick shipment by the next business day
$69 for 1, $66 each for 2, $63 for 3, $61 for 4, $59 for 5, $57 for 6, and $55 for 7+ valves

flow director splitter valve additional images, design details and installation guidelines

Flow director valve assembled with coupler, riser, and threaded cap     Flow director valve showing handle kit inside riser assembly

Septic filter basin with fittings kit and director valve

Best practice is settling tank 5 to 10 feet and leach field at least 20 feet away from house.

Settling basin with filter and director-divertor valve

Geotextile soil filter fabric for covering leach pits and percolation fields

Never install plastic 'visquene' sheeting or cheap non-woven 'weed barrier' landscaping fabric in place of professional grade heavy-duty woven geotextile fabric for septic system leach fields, drywell pits, French drains, or soil stabilization in foundation drainage projects. Besides longevity, the problem with using visquene plastic sheeting or cheap weed barrier non-woven materials, is they suffocate the soil, ultimately causing anaerobic soil conditions, biomat formation, root rot, and molding issues. Plastic sheeting becomes brittle and tears within a few years and the adhesive bond holding non-woven weed-barrier fabric together eventually decomposes, slipping, ripping and tearing, and allowing sand and soil to migrate into the gravel drainage layer of leach field or French drain. Invest in our professional grade woven geotextile fabric with a full 35 mil thickness and extra heavy-duty five ounce per square yard weight. Built for a lifetime of service, this is one of the only 'hydrophilic treated' materials on the market, with needle punched, multi-layer woven polypropylene design technology that lets air, water, and nutrients through, but keeps the soil out. Hydrophilic fabrics are critical in septic and greywater leach fields where oxygen penetrating into the soil is vital for long-term performance and protection against soil percolation failure. Unlike most fabrics, it features a very functional 'fuzzy' side that lays down against the soil to prevent slippage, making it very easy to install on sloped ground. The shiny smooth side has printed stripes every foot on center, full-length, for gauging trench elevations, rock fill levels, or lining up plants. Click here for our geotextile soil fabric engineering specifications and material MSDS sheet. This professional grade geotextile polypropylene fabric has proven itself over time to be a superior performer, as compared to other '20+ year landscape fabrics'.

Professional strength, heavy-duty woven 35 mil thick geotextile fabric is hydrophilic treated to
allow air, water, and nutrients through its needle punched, multi-layer technology construction.
French drain trenches install fabric on all sides to prevent dirt from entering the gravel layer around perforated pipe.
Septic wastewater disposal lateral lines and leach pits do NOT install fabric on the bottom side, underneath gravel.

FREE UPS Ground to 48 contiguous states - No USPS mail box, APO/FPO, Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico or Canada
3, 4, 5 and 6 foot wide professional-duty geotextile soil fabric
30, 60, 90 and 120 foot long pieces or full 250 foot long rolls

3 foot wide

4 foot wide

5 foot wide

6 foot wide


250 foot long full rolls of professional-duty geotextile soil fabric


250 foot long full rolls

Quantity discount of 7.5% for 2 full rolls
10% for 4, 12.5% for 6, and 15% for 10
In stock, ships within 2-3 business days.
12 foot wide by 250 foot long full rolls
available by special order in quantity.


The primary place for geotextile fabric is above the gravel layer of your leach field lines, French drain, or drywell leach pit. Additionally, one can line the outside walls/sides of the excavated leach pit or drain lines to keep soil from migrating into the gravel from sides. This sidewall protection is always recommended when soils are loose or sandy and would otherwise tend to wash soil into the gravel. Geotextile fabric is also used for wrapping perforated pipe-in-gravel French drains, as pictured below, with fabric on the bottom of trench too. French drains are wrapped like a burrito, unlike septic leach field lines where the fabric is on the top and sides only. Protecting your leach pit and perforated pipe gravel from soil and root infiltration is crucial to long-term soil percolation and preventing leach field failure.

Geotextile filter fabric used for wrapping French drain perforated pipe

Division stripe for Infiltrator septic tank systems

Colorado Only - Infiltrator® plastic septic tank kits complete with consultation

Save money by renting a backhoe and installing your own septic system! Plastic septic tanks never rust or crack and are easily moved around by two people, saving money on heavy equipment. Our Infiltrator injection molded poly tanks are UPC listed for permit approval ease and these heavy-duty septic tanks are deeply ribbed for the extra support needed to be buried dry up to four feet underground. Click here or on the picture below for specifications and pricing on our professional-preferred septic tanks. Installation is relatively straight-forward, but even seasoned professionals can get too mired in 'how they've always done it' to realize there are better ways to approach any project. We are here to help every step of the way, doing our best to ensure you don't make that one critical mistake, like not using risers or not venting your leach field properly. Please note we are not Infiltrator®, the manufacturer, and we do not ship Infiltrator plastic septic tanks or Infiltrator chamber leach field systems outside the state of Colorado. For out-of-state referral, please contact the manufacturer direct at: e-mail: or phone: 800-221-4436. Infiltrator chambers and plastic injection molded septic tanks are delivered free by company truck within about 50 mile radius of Denver (North to Fort Collins and Greeley, South to Monument and Franktown, West to Georgetown and Bailey, and East to Deer Trail and Tampa) or provided will-call, pick up in person at the Denver area warehouse. Motor freight for such large items has become so expensive we no longer quote delivery for septic tanks outside of Colorado. Click here for Infiltrator IM series tank pricing manuals, design tips, and specification sheets.

Click here for Infiltrator IM series tank pricing manuals, design tips, and specification sheets. Infiltrator septic tanks are two compartment, injection molded, heavy-duty deeply ribbed to handle dry burial, empty of water, at depths up to four feet.

Clients are encouraged to mail site plans for review. Longevity options and finer details are rarely specified in your permit application. Engineers generally provide only the very bare minimum requirements, neglecting to address critical issues like scarifying soil and venting the end of every leach field run.

Details and drawings for the Infiltrator IM-540, IM-1060 and IM-1530 septic tank kits

Division stripe for Infiltrator chamber leach field system.

Colorado Only - Infiltrator® chamber leach field systems complete with consultation

The septic system's leach field is seldom given the attention it so richly deserves. Most people don't understand that perforated pipe in a gravel bed is NOT the best choice for a long-lasting, durable septic system. Infiltrator® chamber leach field systems are far superior to pipe-in-gravel in every aspect: smaller leach field size due to optimal percolation, increased retention capability for heavy loading days, root infiltration protection for long term viability, resistance to traffic, and more. You don't need to hire an engineer to design your septic system in most counties (we do not supply engineering services). Local regulatory officials normally allow you to submit a site plan and pull your installation permits as the homeowner-builder as long as the soil percolates well. Then you can save even more money by renting a backhoe and installing your own septic system! Installation is relatively straight-forward, but even seasoned professionals can get too mired in 'how they've always done it' to realize there are better ways to approach any project. We're here to help every step of the way, doing our best to ensure you don't make that one critical mistake, like not venting your leach field properly or not scarifying the base of your trenches. We encourage clients to mail copies of their septic system permit plans for our review after purchasing a system, as there are always details that could use improvement with any plan.

Please note we are not Infiltrator®, the manufacturer, and we do not ship Infiltrator plastic septic tanks or Infiltrator chamber leach field systems outside the state of Colorado. For out-of-state referral, please contact the manufacturer direct at: e-mail: or phone: 800-221-4436. Infiltrator chambers and plastic injection molded septic tanks are delivered free by company truck within about 50 mile radius of Denver (North to Fort Collins and Greeley, South to Monument and Franktown, West to Georgetown and Bailey, and East to Deer Trail and Tampa) or provided will-call, pick up in person at the Denver area warehouse. Motor freight for such large items has become so expensive we no longer quote delivery for septic tanks outside of Colorado. For local distributor referral outside of Colorado, please contact the manufacturer direct at: e-mail: or phone: 800-221-4436. Standard Quick4 'Plus' Infiltrator chambers are 34 inch wide (3 foot trench) by one foot tall by four foot long (net length after connecting together) and cost $33 each, $31 each for 50 or more, and $29 each for a full pallet load of 85 chambers or more. Rows of Infiltrator are generally limited to 12 or 13 chambers (about 50 foot length) requiring two $20 end caps for each row. Please e-mail with a cut-list of parts needed for your project to get a personal quote. In addition to your parts list, please provide the Colorado drop-site location and we can confirm free delivery is available in your area.

Click here or on pictures for Infiltrator chamber system pricing and installation tips & tricks
Infiltrator standard Quick4 cut sheet and their YouTube video Quick4 installation
Infiltrator septic tank installation and main septic system chapter

Infiltrator septic chamber leach field installation versus pipe in gravel stone and pipe
Infiltrator Quick4 septic chamber cut sheets and installation tips and tricks

Click here or on pictures for Infiltrator chamber system pricing and installation tips & tricks

"Are we allowed to install this septic system on our property" is not a question we can answer for you. We have been providing much the same passive (non electric) septic system parts for well over twenty years now, but we do not follow constantly changing city, county, and state building regulations. The beauty of a time-tested design is it's conventional to your local building officials. Unfortunately, with over 3000 counties in the United States, regulations changing from year-to-year, and interpretations of those rules varying from one inspector to another, it's never possible to say for certain 'what is allowed' locally. The county building department is your primary source of information on what is possible to install according to local 'code'. Rather than telephone them with questions, you should drive over in person and get a copy of their local Individual Sewage Disposal System ISDS Regs and also get a list of locally licensed soil engineers. The building department will confirm or revise your site plans once submitted for approval. Often the county inspector will assist you with site plans and design as a service provided for their permit filing fee. If not, they will refer you to a local engineering firm that can visit the property in person and design the system. We provide free consultation after the sale on system kit installation, design improvements, and operational issues, but we do not offer any on-site services, 'stamped' engineered plans, advanced treatment systems, or local professional referral.

Privacy Statement: We will never release your name, contact information, or purchase history to anyone!
By using this website, you acknowledge reading, understanding & accepting Terms of Service Agreement
© 1998 - 2016 by Architerra Enterprises, Inc. d.b.a. All rights are reserved, please.
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Merchandise advertised online as Free Shipping only applies to the 48 contiguous United States of America. We do not ship Merchandise into Canada or Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Virgin Isles, APO/FPO, USPS mailboxes, freight forwarding services, or any off-shore island or international destination. We do not accept international credit cards for payment even when shipping within 48 contiguous United States. We do not accept personal checks or any money orders, other than US Postal Service money orders.

The use of this website,, is governed by the following Terms of Service Agreement ("TOSA"). This agreement shall constitute the whole agreement, in its entirety, between Architerra Enterprises, Inc. doing business as ("Merchant") and website visitor ("Client") and any purchaser ("Cardholder") of information, goods, or services ("Merchandise" or "Item" or "Shipment"). Merchant is referred to herein variously as: "", "Contractor", "Seller", "We", "Us" and "Our". Client hereby authorizes Merchant to perform work and supply information and any Merchandise or services as specified in writing by Merchant's invoice and automated email receipt from original purchase. Details within any email correspondence are secondary to the final invoice Merchandise description and online shopping cart receipt. By visiting website or by purchasing any service or Merchandise from Merchant, Client confirms and acknowledges reading, understanding, and accepting in-full this terms of service agreement. Client agrees without reservation to be legally bound by any and all terms and conditions contained herein. Signature and return of this TOSA form is not necessary for the terms and conditions herein to be valid and enforceable by law. Should Client use their own order form to make a purchase based upon price quote from Merchant, the terms and conditions contained herein shall be deemed primary, overruling any agreement incorporated within said Client purchase order or any implied contract. Print a copy of this TOSA for your records, but note current text posted online will be in effect should there be any dispute over terms of use. Should Client not understand or agree with TOSA, please email for clarification before purchasing Merchandise or using Merchant website any further.

Privacy and Security

Complete Client privacy and total security are primary concerns. We promise to never release Client information to anyone for any reason. This privacy policy extends to referral and reference requests. Rest assured, We will never give anyone your name and telephone number so they can call during dinner to ask about a product purchased from We promise you will never end up on a mailing list or get a sales call as a result of being one of Our Clients. secured server credit card processing service, that We have used for many years, has their own very strict privacy policy. is not given any access to credit card numbers during or after any shopping cart puchase made online with We reserve the right to refuse service to any potential Client at Our sole discretion without explanation.

Pricing and Payment

With the exception of the Servel gas refrigerators, only Colorado residents are responsible for paying state sales tax of 2.9%. You may be responsible for paying sales tax directly to your state revenue agency, but We do not collect sales tax outside of Colorado. We do not accept international credit cards, money orders or checks for payment and We do not ship into Canada or Mexico, Puerto Rico, Alaska, Hawaii or any off-shore or international destination. Merchandise advertised Free Shipping only applies to the 48 contiguous United States of America. Special Orders shipped outside the 48 contiguous states (HI, AK, PR, VI, Guam and APO/FPOs) require bank wire transfer payment (EFT) no other option, sorry. Will-call pickup at freight dock and drop shipments to a third party (receiver not being the credit card holder) are only possible with cashier check, US Postal money order or bank wire transfer EFT payment in advance. Email or fax 720-293-1705 with full shipping address and order details for a personal quote and payment invoice. Once invoice is completed, We can accept VISA and MasterCard orders online for fastest service or by phone at 800-563-9720, fax at 720-293-1705, email at Cashier's check, wire or US postal money order is recommended since they are treated as cash and orders ship immediately. Prices are subject to change without notice and do not include any applicable taxes (Colorado residents ONLY). On government and corporate accounts invoiced with payment due 'net thirty', the total amount must be received no later than thirty days after invoice date, not the Merchandise delivery date. Late payments are subject to a 2% monthly finance charge accrued from date of invoice. Package and individual Merchandise parts, components and product specifications are subject to change without notice. Special order items are bid on a case by case basis and quotes are generally good for thirty days unless otherwise notified. Price matching offers are only applicable before purchase is made, not after payment has been submitted for Merchandise. We offer only to price match advertised delivered cost for Kobe Range Hoods that ship via Fed-Ex Ground, not motor freight shipments on a pallet. We offer only to price match authorized Kobe dealers. Internet 'marketplaces' and auction sites commonly feature unscrupulous 'surplus Merchandise' retailers selling used, returns, and repackaged 'demo' units without proper disclosure. Unauthorized dealer surplus Merchandise is NOT covered under Kobe's manufacturer warranty and may well have hidden defects the surplus retailer will not cover. has long been an authorized dealer for Kobe Premium Series range hoods and We sell only brand new, factory-direct, fully warranted appliances.

Free 48 State Delivery

All shopping cart items are advertised as Free Shipping with no extra charge for delivery. Shipping and handling fees are factored into advertised total delivered price. Note shipping is only available to the 48 contiguous United States of America. We do not ship into Canada or Mexico, Puerto Rico, Alaska, Hawaii, Virgin Isles, APO/FPO mailboxes, or any off-shore or international destination. Inventory 'stock' items will ship within 2-3 business days from one of Our warehouses. Scheduled deliveries are not possible to arrange, but We automatically email tracking information after shipment, so you can anticipate delivery date. Motor freight deliveries do not include lift gate service to lower boxes onto the roadway, unless quoted with additional services. If need be, lift gate service to lower boxes onto roadway is available for an additional $65 to $100 fee. Street-side motor freight deliveries are not brought to your front door by the driver, like UPS and Fed-Ex package services. Client must meet motor freight truck deliveries on the street to unload and inspect shipments by hand before signing for Merchandise. Shipments must be accepted promptly within three days of arrival at local freight terminal or storage fees of +/- $50 per day, per pallet may apply. Any and all storage fees billed by trucking company are the sole responsibility of Client and must be reimbursed to Our company.

Fed-Ex and UPS Ground

Most shopping cart items ship via Fed-Ex or UPS Ground package delivery service. Package delivery services, unlike a motor freight carrier (see next paragraph), will allow us to file a hidden damage in transit claim for insurance reimbursement, but We are given less than a week to report it. Regardless of how well the exterior of container box appears, you must ALWAYS have the driver note ANY damage to shipping boxes in writing before signing. Then immediately, always take Merchandise completely out of its packaging and inspect ALL of the Merchandise, notifying us immediately should there be ANY hidden damage to Merchandise. Mechanical problems are covered under the manufacturer warranty, but hidden aesthetic damages (cosmetic dings, dents, broken Welds, significant scratches, or popped rivets) you discover than a week after delivery are not reimbursed or replaced by Fed-EX, manufacturer, Kobe, or Not saying that you or your Merchant caused the damage to the unit before or during installation, but that possibility exists when Merchandise is not properly inspected upon arrival. Additionally, any appearance (non-mechanical) flaws found after installation will not be reimbursed or replaced by freight carrier, Fed-EX, manufacturer, Kobe, or Merchandise that has been installed is not eligible for return or replacement by

Motor Freight Shipping

Servel refrigerators, Sun-Mar composters, larger custom shade panels and larger Kobe range hoods ship via motor freight 'common carrier', as noted on the website and receipt. Scheduled deliveries are not possible to arrange, but We automatically email tracking information after shipment, so you can anticipate delivery date.Common carrier motor freight is shipped on a pallet with boxes covered in clear plastic stretch-wrap and is defined as street-side motor freight drop, which differs from small package services like UPS and Fed-Ex, in that the truck driver does not bring Merchandise into your building or onto the porch. Street-side motor freight drop is a basic delivery service, often in a full-size tractor trailer, where driver parks in street while you unload and inspect the Merchandise. Kobe range hoods, shade panels, and Sun-Mar composters are not shipped with lift-gate service. You must unload boxes from the tractor trailer by hand. If you require lift gate service to lower the Kobe range hood down onto the roadway, with what they call a mechanical 'Tommy lift', it is available for an additional $65 to $100 fee. Please arrange and pay for this optional service at time of order. Always check the number of pieces (boxes) present against the stated waybill shipping receipt tally. As with any motor freight shipment from any distributor, be certain to carefully examine ALL of the Merchandise, not just the outside of shipping box(es), before signing and accepting delivery. It is imperative with motor freight shipments that ALL products be unboxed and fully inspected PRIOR to accepting delivery. Regardless of what the delivery driver may say, you MUST inspect fully before signing and accepting the delivery. It is the freight truck driver's job to wait while you open and inspect shipment for damages. Simply looking at the outside of the box(es) is NOT adequate. Damaged Merchandise (that particular box, not all the boxes) must be refused delivery. Once someone signs for shipment, it confirms Merchandise was received free of ANY damage and removes liability from the transportation carrier. We can only assume that damage reported later and not refused delivery, was caused by the Client, and not the freight carrier. Any subsequent attempt to file a claim for loss or damage will NOT be accepted by the transportation carrier, distributor, or Our company,

Returns and Cancellation

All returns, cancellations and/or exchanges must first be authorized in writing by at Client may not ship any Merchandise back until We supply return Merchandise authorization RMA number and address for the shipment. Orders often do not ship back to the same warehouse they shipped from originally. Contact us with invoice number and reason for return or exchange to obtain an RMA number and instructions. No returns, refunds or exchanges will be authorized more than 30 days after original purchase payment date. Design consultation services, DVDs, knit shade material, water tubes, greywater and septic system parts are not returnable for refund or exchange for any reason. Once payment has been made, custom panel orders are cut and enter the production system and cannot be cancelled after payment is made. No return on any remnants or discontinued items. Any authorized returns of Merchandise must be in the original carton, in new unused condition, and returned freight prepaid to Our designated warehouse. Merchandise originally shipped via motor freight carrier on a pallet, may not be returned via package delivery service such as UPS or Fed-Ex. Original actual shipping cost will be deducted from any refund due along with up to 15% restocking fee on the Merchandise. This restocking fee includes the 3% credit card processing on original purchase, which is not refunded by MasterCard or VISA. Please understand that items on Our website are advertised as "Free Shipping", which is to be understood as "there is no extra charge for delivery of PURCHASED Merchandise". UPS, USPS, Fed-Ex and motor freight carriers charge us a fee for delivery of Merchandise, which We must recoup on returns. Kobe, for instance, bills a flat-fee of $40 and $45 for business and residential Fed-Ex shipments and $162 and $186 for motor freight carrier drops. Sun-Mar and Servel units ship via motor freight carrier for anywhere from $120 to $300+ per unit, depending upon zip code and drop site designation. Kobe, Sun-Mar, Clivus Multrum, Quanics, Dometic and Servel returns are manufacturer-direct, drop ship items and may be subject to an additional manufacturer's restocking fee. Discontinued, clearance items are not eligible for return or exchange. If an item is returned without original packaging intact, or is damaged, found to be used, or otherwise not ready for resale, it may be refused and returned to sender at their expense, so always insure shipment.

Lost and Stolen Shipments

Tracking information is emailed following shipment on all orders so client can anticipate delivery date. Custom size shade panels are made-to-order and can take up to ten business days to produce and ship. All other 'stock items' normally ship within three business days. Should you not receive email shipping information, please send a request for tracking number in writing to: Note it can take up to 48 hours for a given tracking number to appear on transportation company website. During this time, shipment status may be listed as "order processed and ready for pickup". Traditionally, this just means the shipment has not yet reached transportation company terminal and scanned after being unloaded from truck that picked those package(s) up. Overdue shipments must be reported to merchant in writing within one week after anticipated delivery date. Cardholder hereby agrees that only two possibilities exist for a shipment that did not arrive as anticipated. Possibility #1) Transportation company shows shipment as still being in-transit. In this case, merchant will file a 'tracer' request on behalf of cardholder with transportation company and they will search for box(es) at all company freight terminals. Cardholder is required to fully cooperate by filling out any forms requested, returning any voice messages left, and replying to any email messages sent by transportation company or merchant. Your patience and consideration is required and greatly appreciated while transportation company attempts to find the shipment. Replacement or refund is authorized solely at merchant discretion. Cardholder is not permitted to cancel order. Cardholder is not permitted to dictate choice of replacement or refund. And cardholder is not permitted to dictate time frame for settlement and ultimate delivery date for merchandise. Possibility #2) Transportation company shows shipment as being delivered. In this case, merchant will file a 'lost shipment' claim on behalf of cardholder with transportation company. A lost shipment claim can take up to two weeks to resolve and unfortunately, the transportation company rarely, if ever, pays the insurance claim. Ideally, we only ship to cardholder, personally, at their residence or business 'home' credit card billing address, but regardless of designated drop site and receiving person and whether or not a signature was required at time of delivery, cardholder is solely responsible for merchandise security after drop is confirmed by transportation company. After transportation company confirms delivery to shipping address, no signature required, there will be no refund or replacement for lost or stolen merchandise for any reason. Cardholder must immediately file a theft report with their local police department for item stolen from property or designated drop site. Cardholder hereby agrees to relinquish any and all right to file a credit card chargeback sales reversal for merchandise lost in transit by transportation company or merchandise reported lost or stolen after delivery is confirmed by transportation company. Should cardholder file a chargeback in violation of this terms of service agreement, cardholder will be held responsible for reimbursement of any and all merchant services processing fees incurred as a result of the frivolous chargeback, which can be anywhere from $35 up to several hundred dollars.

Shade Panel Production

Our commercial grade knitted shadecloth carries a one year manufacturer's replacement warranty against defects in material and workmanship. You can expect at least 5 years of service when installed properly and well over ten years when used seasonally in a temperate climate. Client must inspect shade panels within one week of delivery in order to be able to report any damages. Rips, tears, and aesthetic damage you find more than one week after delivery are not reimbursed or replaced by the freight carrier or Additionally, merchandise that has been installed is not eligible for return or replacement for damage claims. Fabric is knitted polyolefin, primarily high density polyethylene HDPE, specially treated for durability and UV resistance. Wind damage from loose panel whipping, snagging, and abrading against the structure or cable framework is much more harmful in the long run than simple exposure to sunlight. Knit shade material should be installed hung underneath, not pulled across the top of cable or framework, to avoid abrasion and snagging damage. Chemical, fire, heat, abrasion, and snagging damage are not covered under manufacturer warranty. Shade panel warranty inspection returns must be authorized in advance and returned freight prepaid to designated location for visual inspection. will only pay the cost to ship warranty repaired or replaced merchandise back to client after inspection confirms damage was a material or workmanship defect. The following are trade-standard, non-valid reasons for requesting warranty inspection: First, there is no up-down, right-left, top-bottom or front-back reference point for any panel. Panel 'Width and Length' are measured from outside-edge to outside-edge of the sewn perimeter hem at the four corners only. Knit material has inherent tension and flex in the looming process that will resolve aesthetic issues when installed taut with rope lacing. Grommets on one side of panel are unlikely to line up with grommets on the opposite side or from one grommeted pinch pleat to the next. Exact one foot on-center grommet spacing, specific grommeted pinch pleat centering, and special placement on a particular side for grommets is not warranted. Any panel over 12 foot wide may have a noticeable factory knitted loom splice seam without notice in advance since the 20, 26, and 32 foot wide stock roll width fabrics are manufactured on side-by-side looms. We traditionally cover this seam with a grommeted pinch pleat, but it is possible to order plain cloth without a center GPP, per automated quoting form. Aesthetic issues are not warranted. For instance, the White 50% color knitted shade material can sometimes arrive with patches of orange discoloration and spotting as a result of the manufacturing process. This discoloration will dissipate after installation in the sunlight. Shade material may always be slightly wrinkled from rolling onto storage tube or shipping and knit appearance can vary from sample swatches presented and may also vary between various stock widths. Minor aesthetic flaws in knit appearance, stitching, and snags are not a structural panel failure problem and not warranted. Shade material is lockstitch knitted to prevent structural unraveling. Longevity is the same regardless of aesthetic appearance flaws in the fabric knit or perimeter webbing. If need be, one can use needle and thread to pull small flaws together and super-glue sealed. It is not considered a warranty-related defect unless it affects panel performance. Special fire resistant certified shade materials are not available. The finish 'Length' ordered is what we produce by cutting enough fabric to fold hem and GPP. The only time to anticipate deviation in finish dimension purchased is when 'Width' is a stock material width of 6, 8, 10, 12, 20, 26 and 32 foot. Then, finish 'Width' is likely going to be two to three inches less after folding and sewing perimeter hem and any length-wise grommeted pinch pleats. ALL other times, the size panel you request is the finish size we do our very best to produce. Knitted shade netting is inherently difficult to work with due to tension releasing when cut to custom sizes, so trade-standard warranty for free replacement is a four inch tolerance. As measured at four corners, any error of five inches, or more, is warranted for free remake, replacement, or refund at our sole discretion. This accuracy guarantee does not apply to shapes other than rectangles or any panel dimension over 32 foot. Errors of less than five inches are considered for remedy on a case-by-case basis only when the panel has not been installed and can be resold as a new-unused remnant. Special grommet placement requests are not warranted and grommet spacing at exactly one foot on center is not warranted. Click here for knit shade material engineering specifications and product MSDS sheet.

Warranty and Warnings

Merchandise purchased from is covered only under that product's manufacturer warranty. Client is solely responsible for presenting all claims under those warranties directly to the warrantor. makes no consultation, service work, or system design warranties, whether express or implied and shall not in any way be held responsible for any customer misuse of Our products or misunderstanding of any and all of Our designs, whether express or implied. All responsibility and liability for any and all damages caused by viruses contained within the electronic files of this site are disclaimed. All information contained within this site and supplied by any and all consultations, design work and service work is governed by the following information disclaimer. Be aware that septic tank effluent, composting toilet materials, and greywater alike contain bodily fluids and as such are regulated as Hazardous Materials by the Federal government. Such hazardous materials (raw sewage) should be handled only by licensed professionals trained in the proper safety procedures and using proper safety equipment. If you are unsure of the correct handling and safety procedures, please check with your local health department for more detailed information.

Installation and Liability

Merchandise purchased from or through must be installed by a licensed professional installer and in accordance with manufacturer's specifications and local/state/federal electrical, plumbing, health and building department regulations. Building department regulation requirements differ from one town to the next and it is the Client's sole responsibility to ensure compliance. This is particularly important with hard-wired electric kitchen appliances and hoods, gas refrigerators, septic systems, greywater projects, and composting toilets. Even shade panel installations can come under local regulatory scrutiny (pull permits) in some parts of the United States. Client understands that shade panels are not rated for any fire resistance and hereby confirms that no fire resistance has been expressed or implied by Seller for Merchandise. Client is solely responsible for purchasing (pulling), and coordinating all of the inspections for all of the necessary electrical, plumbing, grading, road, health and building permits for their project. Some of these services, as requested, can be provided to Our Summit County, Colorado Clients where is a licensed and insured general Contractor (license number 6) and septic system installer (license number 69). is not an architectural nor an engineering firm. We do Our best to consult on your project, but site specific engineering, load calculations, soil viability testing, and/or custom blueprinting are not included in any consultation service or system package We sell.

Art and Data Release

Client does hereby irrevocably consent to and authorize the anonymous use and reproduction by Us, or anyone authorized by Us, of any and all artwork, digital images, or stories submitted via email, phone or fax. Our primary concern is protection of your privacy. We never release Client information to anyone for any reason, so any use would be purely anonymous. We will not pay a fee or provide compensation of any sort, now or hereafter, for information, solicited or otherwise, that We share. Client hereby agrees to allow reproductions to be presented online or in printed format and hereby gives Us unrestricted right and permission to copyright and use, re-use, publish, and republish artwork, stories or digital images submitted without restriction as to changes or reproduction hereof in color or otherwise, made through any and all media now or hereafter known for illustration, art, promotion, advertising, trade, or any other purpose whatsoever. This agreement shall be binding upon Client and their heirs, legal representatives and assigns.

Information Disclaimer

The information from or through this site and from or through Architerra Enterprises, Inc. (d.b.a. The Natural Home Building source and is provided 'as-is', 'as available', and any and all warranties, express or implied, are disclaimed (including but not limited to the disclaimer of any implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose). We are not an engineering or architectural design firm. We are not licensed electricians or plumbers. We do not accept any legal liability whatsoever for any 'errors and omissions' perceived or otherwise. Any and all consultation given, or website information provided, may contain typos, errors, omissions, problems, or other limitations. Merchandise specifications are subject to change at any time by manufacturer without any advance notice from Our company or the manufacturer. Product specifications and installation instructions are likewise subject to possible error and may change at any time without Our knowledge. Blueprints, sketches, and any written consultation are provided for informational educational purposes only and not intended for construction-ready application without approval first by locally licensed structural engineer and local building department regulations. Our sole and entire maximum liability for any inaccurate information, for any reason, and user's sole and exclusive remedy for any cause whatsoever, shall be limited to the amount paid by the customer for the information received (if any cost was involved). We are not liable for any indirect, special, incidental, or consequential damages including but not limited to damages for loss of business, loss of profits, litigation, or the like, whether based on breach of contract, breach of warranty, tort (including negligence), product liability or otherwise, even if advised of the possibility of such damage. The limitations of damages set forth above are fundamental elements of this website, communications, and information provided without such limitations. No representations, warranties or guarantees whatsoever are made as to the accuracy, adequacy, integrity, reliability, currentness, completeness, suitability or applicability of the information to a particular situation. Complaints by Client to any rating agency, company review, or personal referral concerning Merchant or Merchandise in direct disregard of this terms of service agreement are to be considered libel and will be prosecuted as such, if need be.

Consultation and Service

Written and verbal consultation on the specifics of any project is governed by this terms of service agreement, with or without purchase of Merchandise. Technical assistance is different with us because Our staff members live with what We sell. Housing, septic, composting and greywater systems all include free on-going consultation, so We'll take the time to answer your questions and ensure your project is a success. At the very least, We strive to save you money by avoiding costly mistakes, both short and long term. If We don't have an answer to your question right on the spot, We'll take the time to research it further and get back to you. We can consult on the phone, if you wish, but email allows us to much more completely answer your questions with sketches and links to related articles. Keeping everything in writing is a sure way to avoid any confusion with "you said he said" situations later. Our sustainable housing products are low-tech in nature, but their design is typically complicated by the seemingly endless installation variables for unique locations and applications. Any and all consultation (blueprints, photos, written word and sketches) purchased from are the intellectual, copyrighted property of HTM house plans, septic system packages and greywater kit components Were designed and priced for the typical home and based upon the average soil type. Whether or not your local building department requires stamped engineer approval, you are well advised to take sample blueprints, sketch plans, and system consultation suggestions to a local professional engineer (PE). Local PEs are familiar with your soil type and more aware of unique building codes and concerns in your area. Most importantly, a local PE is readily available for the necessary site visits. your PE is then responsible for preparing a folder of notes and details which confirm the structural integrity, viability and liability for your project. is not an architectural design nor an engineering firm. We do Our best to consult on your project, but site specific engineering, load calculations, soil viability testing and/or custom blueprinting are not included in any consultation service or system package We sell. Communication is intended only for the paid Client recipient(s) and may be confidential and/or legally privileged and must be treated as such in accordance with state and federal laws. Any disclosure, copying, distribution or action taken in reliance on the content is strictly prohibited.

Fiberglass Water Tubes

Water Tube and Cap ("Item") is manufactured for Client on special order basis by an independent company ("Manufacturer"). Manufacturer's warranty and guarantee, and special terms and conditions of sale and delivery apply to this Item. No warranty or guarantee is provided, expressed, or implied by Merchant, Merchant and Manufacturer do not assume any liability or responsibility for damage in transit. Only the transportation company is responsible for damage in transit. Before signing and receiving Item from transportation company, Client should demand to see packing list from Item shipment. If shipment is short Item (for instance: three caps, not four) or damaged (any Item defects), refuse the goods until the transportation agent notes the shortage or damage in writing on the freight receipt waybill. Always require a copy of the annotated waybill with shortage or damage noted in writing and signed/initialed by driver.Watch for hidden damage and inspect all Items fully before signing and accepting the shipment from a freight carrier. Client signature is testament that Item arrived in the proper amount and in undamaged condition. Hidden damage or shortage (anything found after delivery) is Client's sole responsibility to file claim with transportation company. Merchant and Manufacturer do not assume any responsibility or liability for Item damage during/after installation. Manufacturer guarantees Item is up to its established standard of manufacture as to material and workmanship. In all claims, liability is limited to replacement of the invoice value of any Item claimed to be defective. Client assumes all risk and liability whatsoever resulting from the use of such Item, whether used singly or in combination with other substances. The materials purchased hereunder (Item) shall be examined and tested upon receipt thereof, and before the materials are used and within thirty days from such receipt, Client shall notify Merchant in writing of any claims on account of quality thereof. Failure to so notify Merchant shall constitute a waiver of all claims with respect to Item, and in any event the use of Item by Client shall be deemed to mean satisfactory performance on the Item and Merchant. No claim of any kind (whether as to Item delivered or for non-delivery of Item) shall be greater in amount than the purchase price of Item covered hereby with respect to which any damages are claimed. Merchant and Manufacturer will accept no returns unless previously authorized in writing with Return Merchandise Agreement. Item returned without RMA written permission is liable to non-acceptance and return at expense of Client. RMA will specify 25% restocking fee on Item, plus deduction for original cost of crating and shipping, plus Client is responsible for all return shipping arrangements and all related expenses. There are no promises, agreements, or understandings between Client and Merchant and Manufacturer not contained in this document. Should you use your own form to make a purchase based on a price quote from Merchant, the conditions contained herein shall be deemed to be incorporated in said order or contract or invoice.