A well-maintained septic tank can reduce the need to make costly repairs. The tank’s bacteria is constantly working to remove 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 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 in a tank, the more difficult it becomes for wastes to be reduced. You can reduce water consumption 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 at the bottom of the tank while the oils and grease rise up to the top. The bacteria in the septic tanks breaks down some of this waste and distributes it to a leach field. 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. Americans consume between 80 and 100 gallons per day. This equates to roughly 90 gallons of solid trash per year. Generally speaking, the standard performance of a septic tank is 50 percent reduction of solids.
A chemical additive in your septic tank will not improve its function. They could actually cause more harm than 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 do need to be pumped every so often to remove any solid waste which is not allowed into the leach area. Unless there is significant sludge buildup, most septic tank do not need to be pumped. If you do notice a problem, it’s best to have it checked right away.
The septic company will pump your septic tank and also do a short inspection of the tank. These inspections can alert you to any problems. An inspection of the septic tank can be performed on a single occasion or when you purchase a new property. These inspections usually cost $100 to $300 and are 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 that you pump your tank every three to five year. 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 have to drive over the tank site as they build the house. This could cause delays in the construction process. If the septic system is located near where supplies are delivered, they will be unable to drive 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. The companies should be able provide a written breakdown of costs. This way, you won’t have to make a decision based on guesswork. Septic tanks are necessary but expensive.