A well-maintained septic tank can reduce the need to make costly repairs. The bacteria in the tank is constantly working to eliminate solid waste. It is a good idea for it to be cleaned at least once every three years to ensure it is working properly. It is best to have it checked by a professional contractor at the very least once a month.
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 in a tank, the more difficult it becomes for wastes to be reduced. You can reduce water usage by using water-efficient toilets. 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. 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 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 amounts to roughly 90 gallons per year of solid waste. A septic tank’s standard performance is 50 percent less solids.
The use of chemical additives in your septic system will not improve its performance. They could actually cause more harm than good. Sodium hydroxide, for example, can add more alkalinity to the system, which can cause accelerated clogging and cause a sludge buildup.
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. Unless there is a significant amount of sludge buildup in the tank, most septic tanks don’t require pumping. If you do notice a problem, it’s best to have it checked right away.
Septic companies will not only pump your septic tank but also inspect 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 cost about $100 to $300 and are usually rolled into the repair costs.
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. Your situation may require you to pump your tank more frequently 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.
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 able drive over the tank site while building the house. This could cause delays in the construction process. If the septic tank is in an area where supplies are delivered, it will prevent them from driving over it. You may need to wait until the construction is complete before you can install it.
It can be difficult to calculate the cost of septic tank cleaning. Calling three local companies is the best way of estimating the cost. You should receive a detailed cost breakdown from the companies. This will ensure that you don’t make any guesswork and can make an informed decision. Septic tanks are expensive but necessary.