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 for it to be checked by a professional contractor once a year.
There are many things that you can do to help 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 if you don’t run the faucet while you brush your teeth or wash your 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 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.
You should have a septic tank to handle the water you use, depending on the size of the home. American adults consume between 80 to 100 gallons of drinking water each 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. For example, sodium hydroxide can increase the alkalinity of the system, which can accelerate clogging and lead to sludge buildup.
Septic tanks are very easy to maintain. However, they need to be pumped frequently to remove solid waste that can’t flow into the leach fields. 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.
In addition to pumping your septic tank, septic companies will also do a brief inspection of your tank. These inspections can identify potential problems. A septic tank inspection is possible on a one-time or a permanent basis. 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 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 might need to pump their 1,000-gallon tank once every nine to 12 year, while a five-person family may need to pump it every two to 3 years.
Before you start building a house, it is a good idea to install a septic tank. Contractors won’t have to drive over the tank site as they build the house. This could delay the construction process. If the septic tank is in an area where supplies are delivered, it will prevent them from driving 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. Three local companies are the best way 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 on the basis of guesswork. Although they are essential, they can be costly.