Cannot find fosse

Hello my first post, i have just bought a 1940s rural house and we cannot find the fosse. Our home buyers report just said we need a new one. We have had plumber out and he cannot find it or suggest where it is. The house has not been lived in for some years and there is clearly drainage issues. It takes about 1 hour for kitchen sink to drain !!! The plumber used a special plunger to clear it but it didnt work and now the toilet and shower dont drain like they did before he did this. Has anyone had similar problems. Some advice would be great.

When we visited the Mairie for the first time we were given a survey that showed were our non-confirming fosse septique was, so you could try your mairie.

Thanks Mat, i will give that a go.

Hi Torre and welcome to the forum.

Yes, the Mairie is always a good source of help and info…

If the house is only 1940’s there should be some sort of fosse in place (even if it is only a big hole full of stones).

You might need to do some digging… from the bathroom or kitchen…where you can see an outlet pipe… to see in which direction the pipes go… and after that, it will depend on what you find…

good luck

Follow your nose :nauseated_face::wink:

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That wouldn’t find my fosse. No nasty smells to help.

It could simply be that a major pipe has collapsed/blocked and that is causing the problems in the house…

1940’s fosse:… probably did not put in grease traps … that is now necessary… and possibly the kitchen water went into “oblivion” or a ditch, while the toilet water (hopefully) went to the fosse… :thinking:

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Thanks for your reply’s. What is annoying is all the pipes disappear under the concrete floor and thats it!!! The house is approx 1m above ground level so i suspect the fosse was built under the house for some reason. I have purchased a drain camera so i can investigate as plumber has attempted to rod the drain but can only get rod about 70cm and thats it. Fingers crossed we can sort.

Is there no way of gaining access/viewpoint in the underfloor cavity… you say 1 metre above ground level… must be a gap somewhere…a crawling space… :thinking:

Have you tried talking to the neighbours? It’s amazing what a mine of information they can be !
I have found out a lot about my 1970’s house that I didn’t know before by having general chats with mine.
They even pointed me in the direction of the man who helped with the foundations and he was able to explain about some anomalies I had found !

i recently did a control of my fosse septique. To do that i called vichy communauté (i am in 03), the service public d’assainissement non collectif. It cost 50 euros. He couldnt find mine either even though i know roughtly where it is. However the guy was a mine of information on septic tanks. If you need a new one it costs roughly 8000, or maybe 6000 depending on different stuff. This guy was specialized in septic tank control so the service public d’assainissement non collectif in your area could be really helpful and de mystify the situation. Good luck.

But he couldn’t find yours so €50 down the drain :grin:

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A previous owner of our house 13 years ago found out the hard way ( back up of sewage) that there was no fosse at all!

Thats for sure, but he did rake around looking for it. It is a bit odd i guess. About 10 years ago we had a contractor out to empty it and he definitely found it. But he was Indeed a source of information and so i found him helpful just the same. Also am selling my house with a dutch agency and they told me this control was neccesary for the sale of the house, not sure how true that is but i did it anyway. I must say it gave the future buyers a good way to bargain my asking Price but there you go.

I did inform them from the beginning that my fosse septique was non conforme, but it seems that you must have an official document with all of détails these days, due to new laws.

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You do need to have an official report on the status of your fosse when selling your house. The buyers will have to bring the fosse up to standard by law so of course it becomes a major bargaining chip.

We only bought the House in August and we did have a report that basically said we cannot find the Fosse but you have 4 years to install a new one. I thought we could get away without installing it for a few years and get the rest of house sorted first, but i think this might be the priority.

Hi Torre

Frankly, getting the drains sorted is a good major step. However, you will need to imagine ahead, what plans you have for the property. Anything you do now for the fosse, needs to allow for planned increase in number of bedrooms/bathrooms etc… as you don’t want to find yourself paying out again… in the future. Do it now, do it right… and relax and enjoy life… :relaxed:

good luck

Good to know for sure. Thanks!!

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I had same problem when I bought my house last year. fyi there was no requirement when purchasing to show WHERE it was. Relatives of previous owner said it was under the courtyard. I called a fosse septique company who came and put a camera down the toilet and found it. Amazing (to me…) to find it was underneath the house (which does not have a cave) with an access under the stairway to upstairs.

If they can’t find it, don’t know who can…note: luckily for me it could be connected to the tout a l’egout but first I had to have the fosse emptied and filled with sand. Same company did that too.

When I bought mine 7 years ago the agent made it very clear on several occasions that “there is no fosse”. I am assuming that there being no fosse would save the sellers the expense of getting a report done. Anyway, having noticed there was a toilet in an outbuilding I made use of it for about 5 years before even thinking of installing a new conforming setup. I looked everywhere and dug a trench around the immediate area and found no pipework. It turned out that the fosse is under the poured concrete floor of the outbuilding and totally inaccessible apart from lifting the toiled pan and extracting from that point. Not having the cash for a pro installation I made a start by hand digging a hole and planting a 3000litre tank which I have emptied annually. The rest of the system will have to wait until I win the lottery.