As we get into the heart of the spring season, many homeowners are going outdoors on the weekend and starting their annual lawn care routines.

For you, that might mean firing up the water sprinklers to make sure that your grass gets off to a fast and healthy recovery from the long winter. What you may not realize is that overwatering the lawn can easily become a source of septic and leach field problems this time of year.

Read on to learn why sprinklers can be a big threat to your septic drain field, and what you can do — or not do — to avoid any costly damage.

What Causes Leach Field Problems in Spring

With plenty of rain and snow, winter can be a very wet season. Then you’ve got the infamous April showers that follow soon after. If you add in extra moisture from watering your lawn, you can easily reach the point of saturation.

If anything, you should be trying to dry out your leach field in the spring.

Significant rainfall or overwatering will flood your leach field and block off the natural flow of water (sewage) out from your septic system.

When it’s got nowhere else to go, sewage can start to back up into the plumbing system in your home and cause smelly, costly problems you’d much rather avoid.

Don’t worry. There are some efforts you can make before, during, and after spring (or heavy rainfall/moisture events any time of year) that will help you steer clear of serious septic problems.

How to Protect Your Leach Field From Flooding

Let’s look at the solutions before, during, and after the wettest times of the year.


  • Make sure your septic system is in good condition all year round. That means getting it pumped out on an appropriate schedule, and being smart about routine treatment and maintenance.
  • Don’t use the water sprinklers on the leach field area, especially if there have already been significant rain or snow events in the recent past.
  • Direct any rain gutter spouts away from your leach field
  • Don’t drive heavy vehicles or equipment over your leach field. Compacting the soil will make it even more susceptible to flooding in the rainy/wet seasons.


  • If you already suspect your septic drain field is flooded and backing up your system, you need to start limiting the amount of new water you’re putting into the system.
  • Reduce toilet flushing, showers, dishwashing, laundry, and other water usage as much as possible until your leach field area dries out and unplugs.


  • If the leach field isn’t drying out, or if you suspect damage to your septic system following heavy rains, you should call for an inspection or servicing.
  • If you specifically suspect that debris or silt have gotten into your septic tank as the result of a lot of rain, wait until the surface water has dried up before opening up the tank. Again, you should call a professional septic pumping company for help.

With the right knowledge, you can avoid serious leach field problems from heavy rains or overwatering in the spring season.

Front Range Septic is here to help you keep your septic tank in top condition. Call (970) 302-0457 for a pump out or septic service call that will help you avoid costly emergencies down the road!