Septic System Maintenance

This article will help the reader with some general information regarding living with and maintaining a septic tank system and drain field. We will offer some general information estimating the cost of pumping out a septic tank system and the frequency explaining how often should a septic tank be pumped out? This article will also advise the reader as to simple “Do’s and Do Not” addressing house hold products and chemicals that could be inadvertently disposed of in the sinks and drains possibly damaging the septic system tank and drain field.

Septic system maintenance is and important part of maintaining a home. When a septic system malfunctions, it disrupts the entire household, not to mention the cost factor involved with the repair or even replacement of the system. Considering the fact that the cost of replacing a septic tanks and drain fields can run from $2,500.00 to the $60,000.00 range, depending on the geographical location of the home should motivate home owners to do everything in their power to ensure their septic systems are well maintained and performing properly.

Garbage disposals should not be installed if your home has a septic system. If your home already has a garbage disposal, only occasionally turn the unit on to control the odor that will occasionally build up. Using a garbage disposal as a trashcan will result in solid waste food particles accumulating in the septic tank.  Eventually, this accumulation of non-digested food will flow out into the drain field creating a bio-mat, clogging the drain field.

Anti-bacterial hand soaps and household cleaners containing phosphorous and other bacterial killers can damage the natural occurring bacteria enzyme found in the septic system, disrupting the digestion process creating a buildup of solids in the septic tank. Without the natural occurring bacteria creating the digestion process, solid organic matter will migrate out to the drain field, converting into a black tar like organic substance commonly referred to as bio-mat. Bio-mat will clog the gravel that make up the septic tank drain field restricting the leaching process that is essential to the function of the drain field system.

Depending on the number of people living in a home, a septic tank will require pumping every 2 to 4 years. The typical cost will range depending on your geographical location. The cost can vary from $125.00 to $1,500.00. One of the key factors determining the pumping cost is the fee the pumping contractor pays for disposing of the waste. Ensure the pumper contractor inspects the septic tank system for cracks or any sign of dampness around the tank or over the drain field. Look for discoloration of well fertilized green grass over the drain field. This is a clear indication the system is failing.

Minimize the amount of water you use. Reframe from taking long 40 minute showers. Septic systems are typically designed to handle in the range of 400 gallons of waste water per day. This will add up quickly with a large family causing septic system failure.

Septic tank additives that contain beneficial bacterial enzyme enhance the growth of bacteria helping to digest solids and offset the destructive chemicals that find their way into our system.

Take care of your septic system by performing scheduled maintenance on a regular basis and this will help to ensure a safe, problem free septic system providing the home owner with years of service.

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