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Question DetailsAsked on 4/14/2016

Moving a 6" pvc septic vent in lawn

My home in MA has a 6" pvc vent pipe with a "U" piece on the end so it turns (think candy-cane)it is above the leech-field. I want to put a small garden shed in the spot can I cut the pipe below ground level and add an elbow and a few feet of sraight pipe and bring the candy cane back up 3 feet away?

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3 Answers


Might not hurt to check with your local building department on how they like that (though geanerally allowed by plumbing and residential building codes), also on putting a shed over the leach field or septic tank - which is illegal in many areas. In particular, this vent pipe probably comes directly up from the septic tank - which you should not cover over in case of future removal/replacement need - especially if you do not know where the access hatches (commonly shallow buried) are, as they have to be accessed to pump and maintain the tank.

If putting shed there is OK and not right over tank or manifold (though almost certainly is if vent stack is there), the "horizontal" run needs to slope not less than 1/4" per foot of run towards the tank to prevent condensation buildup or frosting and has to be below frost depth for your area if not vertical - which is likely a problem over a leach field/tank. Also, vent pipe generally has to be 6 feet from a combustion source if heater/stove or power to shed (due to methane gas generation in tank) or vent at least 6 feet above the building roof.

Also, if shed is being built over tank or field, be sure to design it so there is free ventilation underneath (insect screening around perimeter OK) to prevent buildup of explosive methane gas under it.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD


Thank you, it is a vent pipe for the leach field, not the tank, the tank is about 75 feet away.

Answered 4 years ago by zipca


OK - normal gravity leach fields do not have a vent pipe - so I would guess this either sits over a lift pump wetwell, or at a manifold (where the line from the tank splits out to the different leach field "finger" leach pipes. Given the diameter (as opposed to usual 2-4 inch vents) I would guess you may have a lift pump and this provides cooling ventilation for it (so would be 2 pipes total), or possibly you have a septic well/pit as well as a leach field (not uncommon with fields a long ways from the tank, so drop out sediment and solids that congeal in the line from the tank). You would not want to put a structure of any kind on top of any of those because you may need access without warning, so check to be sure before placing your shed.

Course, if you build it on heavy timbers (like 4x6 or such) with cross-bracing or plywood flooring so it can readily be towed out of the way if needed that could change the picture, assuming it will not have any utilities to it.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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