For those who live in areas without access to a local sanitary sewer, a septic system can be the best way to rid your home or business of wastewater. In many incorporated areas, sanitary sewer and wastewater management entities are responsible for the sewage once it flows down your drain. However, with a septic system, the wastewater is semi-processed on-site at your home or business before being filtered into your ground through field lines.
If you rely on this system for waste disposal at your residence or business, there are some things that you need to know about the way it works and how you can keep it functioning optimally. For example, septic pumping is a critical component in septic system maintenance that can’t be neglected, so it’s important to know when your tank needs to be pumped. While septic systems can experience problems from time to time, with proper maintenance and upkeep, they can be just as reliable and trouble-free as a sanitary sewage system. Finding an excellent, reliable septic pumping service in Decatur, IL is the first step in keeping your system in great condition, but there’s more to know to keep your system in top shape. Keep reading to learn 3 things that you should know about using and managing the maintenance of your septic system.
Point 1: What Goes In Is Important
Your septic system is fickle in that you can’t just put anything down the drain without it having some impact on the function of your system. Though some people are accustomed to flushing a wide variety of items down sanitary sewer drains, you simply must monitor what you flush down the drain much more closely when you have a septic tank. Not only should you avoid the usual drain clogging items, but you must be aware that certain items may change the way your system works from a biochemical perspective. Your septic system relies on bacteria to break down the waste so that it can be safely handled. However, if you flush feminine products, disposable diapers, harsh cleaners, or cat litter into your system, it can throw off the bacteria count and cause chaos in the fragile ecosystem of your septic tank. Make sure that you understand what can and can’t be flushed to ensure you don’t damage your system with what goes down the drain.
Point 2: Watch Your Drain Field
You can learn a lot about the health of your septic system by routinely inspecting the ground that covers your field lines. Also known as the drain field, these lines fan out beneath the surface of your soil to distribute the partially processed water into the dirt so that it can be naturally filtered. If you see bubbles or foam rising from the soil, for example, it could mean that you’re using too much laundry detergent, or the detergent you’re using is too concentrated for your system. Therefore, to preserve the ecosystem of your septic tank, you should use less soap or find a less concentrated formula. Also, if the drain field soil feels soft or muddy even when there’s been no recent rain, that could indicate that you have an overflowing septic tank that needs attention.
Point 3: Maintenance is Key
Part of owning a septic system is maintaining it, so you should know that the average system requires pumping every 3 to 5 years. Your tank disposes of excess water on its own, but partially digested solids will accumulate in the bottom over time, leaving less room for the septic system to do its work. Systems that are used heavily will require more frequent pumping than systems that aren’t as heavily used. You should also monitor nearby plant and tree growth as part of your maintenance routine, as water-seeking roots can encroach on your system and damage pipes or your tank. Make sure that your septic system area is clear of plants and trees to protect your system.
If you own a septic system, understanding these points will help you keep your system trouble-free. To learn more about your septic system, contact Sewer & Septic Specialists at (217) 855-5622 or (309) 830-3962.