Keeping your septic tank clean and well-maintained can help reduce the need for costly repairs. The bacteria in the tank is constantly working to eliminate 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 will be for waste to be broken down. 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.
The septic tank separates wastewater from your home into three layers: solid waste, liquid waste (scum), 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. The tank will need to be pumped when the sludge has reached the bottom.
You should have a septic tank to handle the water you use, depending on the size of the home. The average American adult uses between 80-100 gallons of water per day. This is equivalent to 90 gallons worth of solid waste 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. In fact, they could cause more harm than good. For example, sodium hydroxide can increase the alkalinity of the system, which can accelerate clogging and lead to sludge buildup.
Septic tanks need 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. However, if you notice a problem, it is best to get it checked immediately.
Septic companies will not only pump your septic tank but also inspect it. These inspections will alert you to any potential problems. A septic inspection can be done once or several times during a property purchase. These inspections cost about $100 to $300 and are usually rolled into the repair costs.
The size of your tank, as well the number of people who live in your home, will impact how often you need pump your septic tank. The EPA recommends pumping your tank once every three to five years. However, your specific situation may require a more frequent pumping than this. For example, a single person with a 1,000-gallon tank may need it every nine to 12 years, while a family with five people may require pumping every two to three years.
You should consider putting a septic system on the site prior to laying the foundation for a new house. Contractors won’t be able drive over the tank site while building the house. This could cause delays in the construction process. If the septic tanks are located in an area where supplies are delivered it will prevent them driving 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. The best way to estimate the cost is to call three local companies. The companies should be able to give you a detailed cost breakdown in writing. This way, you won’t have to make a decision on the basis of guesswork. Although they are necessary, they are also very expensive.