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 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 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 by not running your faucet while you brush or wash dishes.
When wastewater from your home passes into the septic tank, it separates into three layers: solid waste (sludge), liquid waste (scum), and 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 and needs of your home, you need a tank that can handle the amount 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.
A chemical additive in your septic tanks will not improve its functionality. They can actually do 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. However, they must be pumped regularly to remove the solid waste that cannot flow into the leach field. Most septic tanks do not require pumping unless there are significant amounts of sludge. 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 cost about $100 to $300 and are usually rolled into the repair costs.
The size and number of people living in your house will affect how often you pump your septic tanks. The EPA recommends that you pump your tank every three to five year. Your situation may require you to pump your tank more frequently than this. 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 allowed to drive over the tank while they’re building the house. This could delay the building 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 estimate the cost of a septic tank clean. It is best to contact three local companies to estimate 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. Although they are necessary, they are also very expensive.