With proper maintenance and service, septic systems can last for decades. Like any system in your home, the best way to ensure it is in good condition and to keep it working properly is with regular maintenance.
Thompson & Thompson provides a wide array of septic service, including septic tanking pumping and cleaning, to keep your septic system clean and working correctly.
Regular septic tank pumping and cleaning is a relatively quick and affordable service and it is the best thing you can do for your septic system. Regular septic pumping or cleaning will ensure solids do not build up in the tank and cause it to flood, while also showing the condition of the septic tank and ensuring that it does not fill too fast or that it is not leaking. Cleaning prevents clogs in inlets, outlets and drain fields, preventing backups through tanks and pipes. Regular septic tank pumping is the best way to prevent problems with the tank.
Your home septic system is designed to safely filter wastewater, allowing clean water to enter the ground.
The size of the tank determines how much water can flow through the tank at one time, and also the amount of solid waste which can build up in the tank. The septic tank is an organic environment with microbes that will break down the majority of solid waste, but some will be left behind. The microbes are also not suited to break down some items, such as some paper products, plastics, grease and chemicals. It is not recommended to flush or put non-biodegradable solids down drains. Inevitably, a layer of solid waste will build up in the tank and this is when the tank should be pumped..
Many homeowners are not sure when they should have their septic tank pumped out.
This is dependent on several factors and, to prevent flooding and clogs, it is best to have the tank pumped out more frequently.
Getting rid of waste from our homes and businesses is a necessity for a healthy prosperous society. We’ve come a long way from our pre-industrial methods of moving waste around… there was a time not so long ago when we simply tossed our chamber pot contents out into the street and let the rain take care of it (eventually).
Today, there are better and safer methods of waste disposal, which include public sewer systems and septic systems. Public sewer systems differ from septic systems in that they serve communities with a network of conduits that end up at a central wastewater treatment plant and are more likely to be found in developed areas. Septic systems serve individual households and are usually found in rural areas where a public sewer hookup is not available.
As the wastewater from your home flows into the septic tank, its components immediately start separating with the heavier solid materials settling at the bottom to form a sludge layer while the lighter and greases float at the top to create a top layer or “scum.”
The primary purpose of the tank is to retain solids. The liquid component flows out of the tank via a special T-shaped outlet and filter leaving the solids behind.
This retention period is vital as it facilitates the complete separation of the solids from the liquids while allowing the solids to undergo a digestion process by anaerobic bacteria (no oxygen needed) while inside the tank. The bacteria break down the solids into a sledge that can be removed later.
The drain field is a configuration of perforated pipes in trenches that deliver the liquid effluent to the soil. Further treatment occurs underground as the effluent flows out of the tank through the buried pipes, and seeps through the holes through gravel and sand. These fine particles filter out pathogens while aerobic bacteria take advantage of free food and complete the decomposition process. Eventually, the final product finds its way, after a natural cleanup, to local groundwater.
Every three to five years- depending on usage volume- solids will eventually accumulate inside the tank and will need to be disposed of. If it’s not pumped out, the tank will overflow and solids will begin to accumulate in your drain fields, clogging the soil pores caused the entire system to back up instead of being absorbed into the ground.
1. Save Money
Septic systems can cost less over time than a public sewer hookup. If you are located in a rural or remote suburban area, the cost of running sewer lines to the house can be prohibitive or impossible. If you do have a choice, it’s not as clear cut. Installing a septic system is going to be significantly cheaper than installing a public sewage hookup on your residential property.
Moreover, septic systems do not incur a monthly cost as they run independently from public sewage systems. And because a septic system can last for decades, you will not have to worry about replacement costs. If you take care of your septic system, paying for a pump-out every four years is much less than a regular municipal sewer fee.
The process applied in the septic system ensure that they do not affect the environment or contaminate groundwater, while a broken or flooded public system might. Moreover, even in the event that the system leaks, the subsequent damage is contained within the surrounding property.
Also, septic systems utilize drain fields or leach fields as natural filters to ensure that only liquid effluent that is free from bacteria reaches the soil. Septic systems, additionally boost local flora and fauna by providing the soil with water and nutrients that spur plant growth which is advantageous in many areas.
1. Costly to Replace
If not properly maintained, or when it ages to a certain point, your septic system will corrode, crack or leak. The longest-lasting tanks made from steel or concrete can last from 20 to 40 years but will need to be replaced at some point. It may run you $5000 or more, but it still may be a bargain when considered over the life of the system.
Given that it is costly to replace a faulty septic system, it is imperative that you take all the precautionary measures necessary to keep your system in good shape. The more proactive you are in your approach to maintenance, the longer your system will last.
The following are some useful maintenance tips:
This process involves a pump truck vacuuming out the scum and sludge from the tank and leaving it ready to be filled again. During this process, the technicians will also take a look at the tank to check for any faults and repair them while doing other relevant maintenance services.
The contents from the septic tank (septage) are then either taken to a waste treatment plant or dumped into an approved landfill. Nonetheless, septage has found various uses today. It can be safely applied as fertilizer to grow food or even to generate methane to produce electricity.
Septic systems are efficient, inexpensive, and convenient means or treating and disposing wastewater from households. Nevertheless, as not all soils are suited for this process, it is imperative that a comprehensive soil analysis is performed before the system is installed.
Be kind to your septic system and it will serve you well for years! If it does need a little extra TLC, Thompson and Thompson septic services offer you fast, knowledgeable service and repairs. Our experienced technicians will get your septic system back to working order as quickly as possible.