Keeping your septic tank clean and well-maintained can help reduce the need for costly repairs. The tank is constantly being cleaned by bacteria that breaks down 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 that it be checked by a professional contractor every year.
There are many things you can do to 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 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 the bottom of the tank, while the oils and grease rise to the top. The septic tank’s bacteria breaks down some of the waste and distributes it to the leach fields. When the sludge reaches the bottom of the tank, a pump will be necessary to remove the buildup.
Depending on the size of your home, you should have a septic tank that will handle the amount of water you use. American adults consume between 80 to 100 gallons of drinking water each 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. In fact, they can cause more harm that good. For example sodium hydroxide can add more acidity to the system. This can cause accelerated clogging or sludge accumulation.
Septic tanks need very little maintenance. They must be pumped on a regular basis to remove any solid waste that is not allowed to flow into the leach field. Fortunately, most septic tanks don’t need pumping unless there is a significant sludge buildup. 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 will alert you to any potential problems. A septic tank inspection is possible on a one-time or a permanent basis. These inspections can cost anywhere from $100 to $300, and are often included in the repair cost.
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 you pump your tank once every three-five years. However, depending on your particular situation, you may need to pump more often 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.
When building a new home, you should install a tank before you lay the foundation. This way, contractors won’t be able to drive over the tank site while they’re building the house. This could delay 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 difficult to calculate the cost of septic tank cleaning. Calling three local companies is the best way of estimating the cost. The companies should be able to give you a detailed cost breakdown in writing. This way, you won’t have to make a decision based on guesswork. Although they are essential, they can be costly.