A well-maintained septic tank can reduce the need to make costly repairs. The tank is constantly being cleaned by bacteria that breaks 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 ways you can help your septic system stay clean. One of the first things you should do is use less water than you typically would. The more water that is in the tank, it is more difficult for waste to be dissolved. You can reduce water use by using water-efficient toilets, showerheads, and washing machines. You can also reduce water consumption by not running the tap while you brush your teeth and wash dishes.
When wastewater from your home passes into the septic tank, it separates into three layers: solid waste (sludge), liquid waste (scum), and oil and grease. The solids settle at the bottom of the tank while the oils and grease rise up to the top. The septic tank is populated with bacteria that breaks down some waste and distributes it in 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. Most American adults use between 80 and 100 gallons of water a day. This equates to roughly 90 gallons of solid trash per year. Generally speaking, the standard performance of a septic tank is 50 percent reduction of solids.
The use of chemical additives in your septic system will not improve its performance. In fact, they could cause more harm than good. For example sodium hydroxide can add more acidity to the system. This can cause accelerated clogging or sludge accumulation.
Septic tanks are very easy to maintain. They do need to be pumped every so often to remove any solid waste which is not allowed into the leach area. Unless there is a significant amount of sludge buildup in the tank, most septic tanks don’t require pumping. However, if you notice a problem, it is best to get it checked immediately.
Septic companies will inspect your tank after pumping it. These inspections will alert you to any potential 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.
The size of your tank as well as the number of people in your home will determine how often you need to pump your septic tank. The EPA recommends pumping your tank once every three to five years. Your specific situation may require more frequent pumping. 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. This way, contractors won’t be able to drive over the tank site while they’re building the house. This could cause delays in the construction process. It will stop people from driving over the septic tank if it is located in an area that supplies are delivered. Before you can get it in place, you might have to wait until all the construction is done.
It can be difficult for you to estimate the cost of a cleaning your septic tank. The best way to estimate the cost is to call three local companies. You should receive a detailed cost breakdown from the companies. This way, you won’t have to make a decision on the basis of guesswork. Septic tanks are expensive but necessary.