A septic tank is a vital part of any home or business that is not connected to a municipal sewer system. Proper maintenance is essential to ensuring that your septic system works properly and lasts for many years.
Here are some tips, from us, Certified Plumbing of Brevard, on how to maintain your system:
Pump Your Septic Tank Every Three to Five Years
Most septic tanks need pumping every 3-5 years, but this will vary depending on the size of your system and the number of people using it. Pumping your septic tank will remove the sludge and scum that accumulate in the tank. Do not pump sewage without a professional.
If done incorrectly, you could damage the septic tank or the leach field. You don’t want the leach field damaged because that’s how your septic system treats the wastewater. If damaged, it can cause backups in the house, foul odor, and wastewater can seep into the ground, contaminating groundwater. And you don’t want it damaged because that’s where all the sewage goes. If damaged, you’ll have a big mess on your hands.
During an inspection, a professional will check your septic tank to ensure it’s in good working condition and that there are no leaks. They also check the leach field to ensure it’s not clogged and that no sewage is seeping into the ground.
If you have a garbage disposal, you may need to have your system pumped more often. The use of garbage disposals adds solids and grease into the septic system, which can clog the leach fields.
If you have a septic tank, it’s essential to take care of it. By having it inspected regularly and pumped when needed, you can help prevent problems and extend the life of your septic system.
So, when in doubt, call Certified Plumbing of Brevard.
Have Your Septic Tank Inspected Regularly
An inspection helps you identify potential problems so a professional can fix them before they cause major and expensive damage. Regularly maintaining your septic system will also help extend its life.
Inspections look for any signs of problems, such as sewage backup, water pooling around the tank, or slow drains.
If you’re buying a home with a septic system, be sure to have it inspected before closing the sale.
What Happens During an Inspection:
- Certified Plumbing of Brevard will first locate your system.
- Using a vacuum truck, they will then clean out any scum and sludge.
- Then a certified inspector will measure the depth of the system.
- If it’s too full, it could be a sign that it’s not working correctly.
- The inspection will also include a check of the baffles.
The baffles are designed to keep the solids in the septic tank while allowing the liquids to pass through. If the baffles are damaged, solids could escape into the leach field, which could clog the leach field and cause a septic system failure.
After the inspection is complete, the septic tank should be pumped every 3-5 years to remove any accumulated solids.
Repair Any Leaks in Your Septic System As Soon As Possible
Leaks can allow water and sewage to seep into the ground, contaminating your drinking water and damaging your property.
What to look for if your tank is leaking:
- Wet spots in your yard
- A strong sewage odor
- Grass that is greener than the rest of your lawn
If you suspect your septic tank is leaking, contact a professional immediately.
Use Water Wisely
Limit the amount of water you use and only put biodegradable materials down your drains. This reduces the amount of wastewater that is treated by your septic system.
Using too much water is a common factor in failed septic tanks. When you use large amounts of water in a short period of time, it can overwhelm your septic system.
This could cause the system to overflow and release sewage into your yard.
It’s important to be mindful of how much water you use, especially if you have a smaller septic tank. Try to space out your water usage throughout the day and avoid using large amounts of water all at once.
Be Careful What You Put Down Your Drains
One of the most critical tips is to be mindful of what you put down your drains. Only flush biodegradable materials, such as human waste and toilet paper. Never flush any feminine products down the toilet, even if the packaging says you can flush them. Fixing, repairing, or replacing a septic tank can cost thousands of dollars. If you’re unsure, throw it out. It may save you thousands.
It’s also good to know how to dispose of harsh cleaning chemicals. Most systems can’t handle these kinds of chemicals. Even if the cleaning chemicals are biodegradable, they can still harm your tank. The best way to dispose of them is to take them to a hazardous waste facility.
Another common mistake people make is disposing of their cooking oil, grease, or sauces by pouring them down the drain. It’s never a good idea to pour anything that isn’t water down the drain. Cooking oil and grease can solidify in your tank and clog the pipes. If you need to get rid of cooking oil, grease, or sauces, let it cool down and then put it in a container to throw away.
People also make the mistake of putting food scraps down the garbage disposal. Your septic tank is not a garbage can. The garbage disposal is used primarily for shredding food waste, not scraps. Food scraps consist of egg shells, onion peels, apple cores, banana peels, etc. It’s the stuff that no one eats. Food waste is perfectly edible food that can go down the garbage disposal. When you put food scraps down the garbage disposal, it can clog the tank and pipes. It’s best to compost your food scraps or throw them away in the trash.
Don’t use septic additives. Septic additives are unnecessary and can be harmful to your septic system. Septic tank cleaners, treatments, deodorizers, and enzymes are all examples of septic additives. These products can upset the delicate balance of bacteria in your tank and damage or clog the septic system.
Don’t Drive or Park on Your Septic Tank
Your septic tank is full of bacteria that help break down waste. If you drive or park on your tank, you can crush the bacteria and damage the system. This can lead to failure and a very costly repair bill.
Leaving anything on your septic tank can cause significant damage. Don’t build a deck, place a shed, or even leave grazing animals over your system or leach field. It can damage your pipes and lead to failure.
By following these septic tank maintenance tips, you can help extend the life of your septic system and avoid costly repairs. Call Certified Plumbing of Brevard today for an inspection. If we find anything out of the ordinary, we’ll give you a quote and offer the best solution to fix the issue.