Will your land perk?

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Digging Septic Perk holes


Looking for good buildable land? Before hiring a home builder, make sure your land will perk!

There are a variety of soils throughout Washington State, and not all of them are good to build a home on.

To find out what type of soils you have, you can either rent earth moving equipment from Home Depot or hire an excavation contractor to bring a mini-excavator out to your property and dig septic perk holes down to approximately 4′. This is the best method and required in order for a septic designer to obtain infiltration rates of the soil and to create a septic design.

Alternatively, if you are looking at buying or developing land and want to take a quick survey of the general area, this web tool is absolutely fantastic. I use this all of the time and it’s a closely held secret in the land world. USDA Web Soil Survey.

Some soils infiltrate water better than others. Some soils are shallow and are sitting on top of a restrictive layer of clay or glacial till. It’s a really fascinating science that required a licensed professional. Make sure you conduct a feasibility study with a qualified septic designer. Diggs can help. We have vetted some of the best septic designers in the Pacific Northwest. We will help you look at setbacks, critical areas, soils, title reports and a whole host of other feasibility items to help you find and buy the right land to build a creat northwest custom home. About Diggs Custom Homes – We are a Custom Home General Contractor. Learn more about us on our website.

If you are looking to save thousands of dollars, this is one of the ways you earn sweat equity. Builders typically want to build new homes. They don’t want to chase permits, power and utility connections. There is little money to be made and its really a matter of making phone calls and scheduling. Getting your own septic system perked, designed and installed will save you money.


Quick Tip: How to Use the Web Soil Survey.

#1 Click on the Green Start WSS Button


#2 Click on the Address Chevron

Home Builders on Septic

#3 Add the address, select the AOI (Area of interest) Rectangle or Polygon selector tool.

#4 Go to the tabs at the top of the page and select the “Soil Map” tab. Then locate the map unit of interest on the map and find the corresponding soil in the map legend to the left.

Mobile Home Replacement in the Pacific Northwest Tacoma, Spanaway, Graham, Bonney Lake WA

#5  Click on the soil unit of interested and it will expand and provide valuable information about your soil including soil type and precise depth.

Design your custom new home around your septic system with this tool. Easy to use and free. Save time and money with a quick search of your land.

Hopefully, you can see the value behind this tool. It is in no way a replacement of digging septic perk holes, it does offer a bird’s eye view of where to start digging and if the land even has a fighting chance of finding permeable soils.


If you are looking to buy land, don’t miss this amazing land finder tool exclusive to Diggs : LAND SEARCH TOOL


Here are some helpful local links for septic designers or installers and health department information.

King County Septic Designers

King County Health Department

Pierce County Septic Designers

Pierce County Health Department

Mason County Septic Designers

Mason County Health Department

Thurston County Septic Designers

Thurston County Health Department



Disclosure: Soils can be found in all of the major cities and counties in the US. Diggs is a homebuilder in the following areas in Pierce County, Washington State: Auburn(partial), Bonney Lake, Buckley, DuPont, Edgewood, Fife,Fircrest, Gig Harbor, Lakewood, Milton (partial), Orting, Pacific (partial), Puyallup, Roy, Ruston, Sumner, Tacoma(county seat), University Place, Carbonado, Eatonville, South Prairie, Steilacoom, Wilkeson, Alder, Alderton, Anderson Island, Artondale, Ashford, Browns Point, Canterwood, Clear Lake, Clover Creek, Crocker, Dash Point, Elbe, Elk Plain, Fife Heights, Fort Lewis, Fox Island, Frederickson, Graham, Greenwater, Herron Island, Home, Kapowsin, Ketron Island, Key Center, La Grande, Lake Tapps, Longbranch, Maplewood, McChord AFB, McKenna, McMillin, Midland, North Fort Lewis, North Puyallup, Parkland, Prairie Heights, Prairie Ridge, Purdy, Raft Island, Rosedale, South Creek, South Hill, Spanaway, Stansberry Lake, Summit, Summit View, Vaughn, Waller, Wauna, Wollochet, American Lake, Bee, Burnett, Crescent Valley, Cromwell, Electron, Elgin, Firwood, Glencove, Lakebay, McNeil Island, National, Ohop, Paradise, Point Fosdick, Shore Acres, Shorewood Beach, Sunny Bay, Sunrise Beach, Sylvan, Tehaleh, Victor, Villa Beach

Author Details
Don’s love of all things real estate has motivated him to spend the last 30 years in buying, building and selling, rehabbing, flipping, lending, Developing land and large scale plats and is a nationally recognized award-winning real estate professional.
Don’s love of all things real estate has motivated him to spend the last 30 years in buying, building and selling, rehabbing, flipping, lending, Developing land and large scale plats and is a nationally recognized award-winning real estate professional.

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