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 that it be checked by a professional contractor every year.
There are many ways you can help your septic system stay clean. The first thing you should do is to use less water than usual. 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 save water by not running your faucet while you brush or 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. 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. Most American adults use between 80 and 100 gallons of water a day. This is equivalent to 90 gallons worth of solid waste per year. The standard performance of a toilet is 50 percent of solids.
A chemical additive in your septic tanks will not improve its functionality. 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 don’t require much maintenance. They do need to be pumped every so often to remove any solid waste which is not allowed into the leach area. 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 can help you identify 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.
The size and number of people living in your house will affect how often you pump your septic tanks. 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. 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.
You should consider putting a septic system on the site prior to laying the foundation for a new house. Contractors won’t have to drive over the tank site as they build 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. Before you can get it in place, you might have to wait until all the construction is done.
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 provide a written breakdown of costs. This way you won’t have make guesswork about the cost of your project. Septic tanks are necessary but expensive.