Keeping your septic tank clean and well-maintained can help reduce the need for costly repairs. The bacteria in the tank is constantly working to eliminate 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 to get it checked by a professional contractor at least once a year.
There are many things you can do to keep your septic tank clean. First, you should not use more water than you usually do. The more water that is in the tank, it is more difficult for waste to be dissolved. Water-efficient toilets and showerheads can help reduce water consumption. You can also save water by not running the faucet while brushing your teeth or washing your 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 to the bottom of the tank, while the oils and grease rise to the top. The septic tank is populated with bacteria that breaks down some waste and distributes it in the 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 is equivalent to 90 gallons worth of solid waste per year. The standard performance of a toilet is 50 percent of solids.
The use of chemical additives in your septic system will not improve its performance. They can actually do 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 need very little maintenance. However, they need to be pumped frequently to remove solid waste that can’t flow into the leach fields. Fortunately, most septic tanks don’t need pumping unless there is a significant sludge buildup. However, it is best that you get it checked as soon as possible if there is a problem.
Septic companies will not only pump your septic tank but also inspect 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 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 pumping your tank once every three to five years. Your specific situation may require more frequent pumping. 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.
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 construction process. If the septic tank is in an area where supplies are delivered, it will prevent them from driving over it. So, you may have to wait until the building process is almost complete before you can get it installed.
It can be difficult to estimate the cost of a septic tank clean. Calling three local companies is the best way of estimating the cost. The companies should be able to give you a detailed cost breakdown in writing. This will ensure that you don’t make any guesswork and can make an informed decision. Septic tanks are necessary but expensive.