Cleaning Services

What is a Septic Tank?

Septic tanks are watertight vaults where the sewage treatment process begins. Wastewater from toilets, showers, tubs, sinks, and washing machines flows into the tank. Density differences automatically separate the sewage into three layers: oil and grease float to the top, which is called “scum”; liquid wastewater is in the middle layer, called “effluent”; and solid waste sinks to form the bottom layer of sludge.

The septic tank is the first line of defense for your home’s wastewater treatment system, which keeps sewage from reaching groundwater supplies and the environment. Wastewater goes from the home’s drains and toilets to the septic tank, where it undergoes a settling process, with solid waste and sediment sinking to the bottom of the tank while fats, oils, and scum rise to the top. In the tank, anaerobic bacteria break down these solids into sludge and water. Sludge is then carried through a series of porous pipes to your absorption field, where it’s dispersed into the soil. For more information, just click the link provided to proceed.

Several factors influence how often you’ll need to get your septic tank pumped. For instance, your household size and use of garbage disposals and wet wipes can cause a tank to fill up faster. In addition, older tanks typically require more frequent pumping than newer ones.

You’ll know it’s time to have your septic tank pumped if you notice that the wastewater entering your house is full of sewage-smelling liquid or that the septic system has backflow. You may also find that your drains need to be opened faster or have standing sewage in the yard.

A professional septic tank company will come to your house with a large truck that has a hose that essentially sucks up the sludge and solids from your septic tank when it’s opened. The septic waste is then taken to a sewage treatment plant for processing. The process could be cleaner and more pleasant, so you’ll want to schedule it far enough in advance that your neighbors and family won’t be hosting backyard parties or other events.

Before the professionals arrive, you must locate your septic tank and clear the surrounding area. You’ll also need to figure out the last time you had the tank pumped or inspected and be prepared to answer questions about that date. You can help the professionals prepare the tank lid for pumping by removing any weeds or debris covering it. Additionally, if you can help the professionals put the lid back on after pumping, it can be a big help.

A septic tank is a watertight container that receives wastewater from the house. It stores household waste and provides a small degree of treatment before the sewage is discharged to the absorption field. The solids that accumulate in the tank form sludge, while fats and oils float to the top as scum. Bacteria in the septic tank break down these solids and liquefy the sludge. The liquid wastewater (effluent) leaves the septic tank through a T-shaped outlet.

A properly functioning septic system is designed to last for 20-30 years with regular maintenance and pumping. However, a septic system that is not maintained properly can fail and cause harmful bacteria and nutrients to enter the environment and clog drain lines in your home.

If you live in a flood-prone area, it is advisable to have a backflow preventer installed on your building sewer to ensure that sewage does not back up into your house during a flooding event. A professional can also install a backflow preventer on your septic tank to protect it from the same problem.

Plant only grass and other shallow-rooted plants around your septic tank and absorption field whenever possible. Deep-rooted plants are more likely to grow into and clog pipes. It is also a good idea to map out your septic tank and system components or place permanent stakes on your property to avoid damaging the system when working in your yard or doing home maintenance.

Keep in mind that non-biodegradable materials such as cigarette butts, cotton swabs, and menstrual hygiene products should not be flushed down toilets. These items are more likely to clog your septic tank and may cause your toilet to overflow or fill up with sewage.

If you notice a foul smell in your home or garden, it may indicate that the septic system is overflowing or has a clog. A clog in the ventilation pipe allows septic system gases, including methane, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide, to leak into the environment. These gases can contaminate nearby drinking water wells and local waterways with pathogenic bacteria or other pollutants. The excess nitrogen and phosphorus can also encourage the growth of toxic algae.

If your septic tank needs to be cleaned regularly or the number of people using your system has increased, it may be time for an upgrade. A professional can help you determine your tank size and recommend an appropriate size for your home. They will also look for a cracked or leaking lid.

On average, repairing a plastic septic tank lid costs between $150 and $500. This is because a broken lid allows debris to enter the tank, which is detrimental to the bacteria inside it.

Bacteria in your septic system break down wastewater contaminants, including hydrogen sulfide and other gases. They release these gases through a vent that has a mushroom shape and is located in your tank’s lid. If these gases enter your home, it is a sign that your system has a clog that needs cleaning.

Another sign of a septic tank problem is if your toilets or sinks drain slower than usual. This is because waste backs up into the drains when the bacteria can’t digest it.

You might also notice puddles or wet spots in your yard, particularly those closest to the tank. This is because the septic tank is filling up with sludge and semi-solid scum. When this occurs, it will be difficult for wastewater to pass through the drainfield and into groundwater.

If you notice these problems, it is important to have your septic tank repaired right away. Please do so to avoid contaminated drinking water wells and local waterways. Additionally, excess nutrients from septic tanks can contribute to toxic algae blooms that deplete oxygen in waterbodies, killing fish and other aquatic life.

If your septic system is causing serious damage or is a complete failure, you may be better off replacing it. Depending on the extent of the damage and your location, it can cost between $9,500 and $15,000 to install a new septic tank, plus the price of removing the old one. Having your septic system properly repaired and maintained can extend its lifespan.

A septic tank efficiently deals with household waste in homes not connected to sewer lines. It is like having a mini treatment plant in your backyard. The wastewater from toilets, sinks, and other drains enters the septic tank, where solids are deposited at the bottom while fats, oils, and grease drift to the top. Bacteria break down these materials to form sludge and scum. The wastewater then exits the septic tank into an absorption field and is absorbed into the soil.

When deciding to install a septic system, there are many things to remember. You will have to consider the size of your home, how much use the septic system will get, and what kind of ground it sits on. A septic system installer will be able to guide you on these factors. The installation process includes getting a permit, a site survey, and a soil test. The site must be accessible to large equipment and free of any obstructions that could interfere with the installation.

Some septic tanks are concrete, while others are plastic or fiberglass. Each material has its pros and cons. Plastic septic tanks are lighter and cheaper than concrete. However, they can crack or rust. Concrete septic tanks are more expensive but strong and last longer.

Once the septic tank is installed, it must be properly maintained. Regular maintenance can prevent problems such as clogged drainage systems and strong odors. It can also reduce the risk of ground movement destroying pipes and tree roots infiltrating the septic system.

Another important consideration is the amount of mulch that should be added to the absorption field. It is recommended that 8 to 12 inches of mulch be used to prevent ground movement from affecting the septic tank and pipes. Adding too little or too much mulch can cause the soil to compact around the drain field, resulting in a failing system.

The septic tank itself must be protected from damage by animals and vehicles. A fence should be erected to keep animals away from the septic tank, and an alarm should be installed to warn homeowners when the septic system is full. Also, a drain field should not be pumped during rainy weather, as the excess wastewater may oversaturate the soil, leading to a malfunctioning system.