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 that it be cleaned at the least once every three year to ensure it is in good condition. It is best to get it checked by a professional contractor at least once a year.
There are many things that you can do to help keep your septic tank 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 consumption by using water efficient toilets, showerheads and washing machines. You can also save water if you don’t run the faucet while you brush your teeth or wash your dishes.
The septic tank separates wastewater from your home into three layers: solid waste, liquid waste (scum), oil and grease. The solids settle to the bottom of the tank, while the oils and grease rise to the top. The septic tank is populated with bacteria that breaks down some waste and distributes it in the leach field. Pumps will be required to remove the sludge once it reaches the bottom.
Depending on how big your home is, you will need a septic system that can handle the amount you use. The average American adult uses between 80-100 gallons of water per day. This translates to approximately 90 gallons of solid waste every year. A septic tank should be capable of reducing solids by 50 percent.
A chemical additive in your septic tank will not improve its function. 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.
Most septic tanks require very little maintenance. They do need to be pumped every so often to remove any solid waste which is not allowed into the leach area. Most septic tanks do not require pumping unless there are significant amounts of sludge. However, it is best that you get it checked as soon as possible if there is a problem.
Septic companies will inspect your tank after pumping it. These inspections will alert you to any potential problems. An inspection of the septic tank can be performed on a single occasion or when you purchase 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 the number of people who live in your home, will impact how often you need pump your septic tank. The EPA recommends that your tank be pumped every three to five years. Your specific situation may require more frequent pumping. A single person may only need to pump their 1,000-gallon tank every nine to twelve years, while a family of five may need to pump every two to three.
When building a new home, you should install a tank before you lay the foundation. Contractors won’t be able drive over the tank site while building the house. This could delay the construction process. It will stop people from driving over the septic tank if it is located in an area that supplies are delivered. It is possible that you will need to wait until almost all of the building work is completed before you can have it installed.
It can be difficult to estimate the cost of a septic tank clean. Calling three local companies is the best way of estimating the cost. You should receive a detailed cost breakdown from the companies. This way, you won’t have to make a decision based on guesswork. Septic tanks are expensive but necessary.