My husband and I are on Social Security and can barely make ends meet as it is so there's no way we can afford to have our plugged lateral line replaced professionally. I am going to have to dig it up and do it myself. I have been searching on the internet for the proper way to do this, to no avail.

It was not done properly the first time, that much I know. We rented this house 3 years ago before buying it 6 months later. Sewage was coming to the top of the ground in a puddle so the landlord brought in his backhoe, dug up the old line, which was so old it was brittle and crushed. He then dug a new trench and turned the job over to his employees (he is in the business of buying old, rundown houses and fixing them up to rent or sell). We are in the Deep South, so the trench is not deep, but I have a feeling it wasn't deep enough. I have managed to find out that there was nowhere near enough gravel placed on top of the perforated section of pipe, for one thing, and probably not enough under it either. The soil is clay. Almost immediately water would puddle on top of that section whenever we used the shower or washing machine. I had to relocate a fence to keep my dogs out of it and I disconnected the washer line to dump into a french drain I dug. I'm seriously considering doing the same thing with the bathtub.

Now the waste water is seeping out of the hole in the side of the tank where the exit pipe is inserted instead of flowing out the pipe. The top of the tank is 2" above ground with a fiberglass lid on it. If we use the shower the waste water bubbles up onto the surface. I had it pumped out again (was done 3 years ago before repairs) but it is now overflowing again. I also have a feeling that the new pipe was only scabbed onto the old, brittle pipe at the tank, so that's where I'll dig first.

My question is how much gravel should I have both under and over the perforated section of pipe? And what does "mounded" mean in this application and how is it done?

Thanks in advance for any help.