Keeping your septic tank clean and well-maintained can help reduce the need for costly repairs. Bacteria in the tank are constantly working to break down solid waste. It is a good idea to have it cleaned at least every three years to make sure it is functioning properly. It is best for it to be checked by a professional contractor once a year.
There are many things you could do to keep your tank clean. The first thing you should do is to use less water than usual. The more water in the tank, the more difficult it is for waste to break down. Water-efficient toilets and showerheads can help reduce water consumption. You can also save water by not running your faucet while you brush or wash dishes.
When wastewater from your house is pumped into a septic tank it splits into three layers: solid (sludge), fluid (scum), as well as oil and grease. The solids settle to bottom of the tank and the oils, grease, and other substances rise to the top. Bacteria in the septic tank break down some of the waste and distribute it to the leach field. A pump is required to remove the sludge from the tank’s bottom.
Depending on the size and needs of your home, you need a tank that can handle the amount water you use. Americans consume between 80 and 100 gallons per day. This equates to roughly 90 gallons of solid trash per year. A septic tank’s standard performance is 50 percent less solids.
A chemical additive in your septic tanks will not improve its functionality. They can actually do more harm than good. For example sodium hydroxide can add more acidity to the system. This can cause accelerated clogging or sludge accumulation.
Most septic tanks require very little maintenance. However, they need to be pumped frequently to remove solid waste that can’t flow into the leach fields. Unless there is significant sludge buildup, most septic tank do not need to be pumped. It is important to immediately notify your local health department if you suspect a problem.
Septic companies will inspect your tank after pumping it. These inspections can alert you to any problems. A septic tank inspection can be done on a one-time basis or when purchasing a new property. These inspections are typically included in the repair costs and cost between $100 and $300.
How often you should pump your septic tank depends on the size of your tank and the number of people living in your home. The EPA recommends pumping your tank once every three to five years. However, your specific situation may require a more frequent pumping than this. A person with a 1,000-gallon tank might need it every nine to 12, whereas a family of five might need it every two or three years.
If you’re building a new house, you should consider building a septic tank on the site before laying the foundation of the house. Contractors won’t be allowed to drive over the tank while they’re building the house. This could slow down the building process. If the septic system is located near where supplies are delivered, they will be unable to drive over it. So, you may have to wait until the building process is almost complete before you can get it installed.
It can be hard to determine how much a septic tank cleaning should cost. Three local companies are the best way to estimate the cost. The companies should be able provide a written breakdown of costs. This way, you won’t have to make a decision based on guesswork. Although they are necessary, they are also very expensive.