24 Feb. 2020

The Dos and Don’ts of Handling a Septic System

Draining Septic Tank Decatur IllinoisYour septic system is responsible for handling all your home’s waste, so in order to avoid problems like backed-up sewage in your home or a failing system, it’s important that you know how to take care of your system. There are preventive things you can do at home and services provided by septic tank pumping companies in Decatur, IL, to make sure your system keeps running smoothly. Here are some important dos and don’ts when caring for your system.

Things You Should Do:

1. Get the Tank Pumped

One of the most important ways to take care of your septic system is to have it pumped and inspected regularly. This keeps solids from escaping into the drain field or backing into your home when the tank gets too full. Most septic tanks should be pumped every one to three years, but this varies depending on how many people live in your home and how large the tank is. This inspection is vital in identifying any potential problems that need to be repaired before major issues begin.

2. Know Where Things Are

It’s important to know where your septic tank and drain field is located. If you’re unsure where things are, septic tank technicians can show you where everything is. Drawing a diagram can be helpful for future use.

3. Consider Water Use

The amount of water you put down the drain can also affect the septic system. Try staggering when you use large amounts of water so that you’re not showering, washing laundry, running the dishwasher, or flushing toilets at the same time. 

4. Get Repairs as Needed

If you notice any potential problems like leaks, unpleasant odors, or bubbling sounds when flushing or washing things down the drain, be sure to contact septic plumbing professionals right away to avoid additional problems.

5. Treat Drain Field with Care

Make sure no vehicles drive on top of the drain field. Avoid putting heavy machinery in the area because this additional weight can easily damage the underlying pipes or compact the filtration materials and prevent the septic system from working properly.

Things to Avoid:

1. Don’t Pour Grease Down Drains

Make sure you don’t pour grease, oil, or fat down the drain. This can easily cause blockages in your system, and it will also add to the number of solids the tank has to handle. Pour grease into containers that can be thrown away instead.

2. Don’t Plant Trees on Drain Field

The only thing you should plant on your drain field is grass. Tree and shrub roots will eventually migrate to the drain lines and cause blockages and damage.

3. Don’t Use Disposals

A garbage disposal may seem convenient right now, but you’re more likely to have problems in the future when using the disposal to get rid of food waste. This can cause failure or necessitate more frequent cleanings because of the additional load on the system.

Green Septic Tank Lid in Grass Decatur Illinois4. Don’t Use Additives

Don’t use septic tank additives because even though many products are marketed to help your system, they may actually damage them or cause an imbalance in the beneficial bacteria in the tank.

5. Don’t Flush Everything

Finally, you can avoid problems by watching what you flush. Don’t flush harsh chemicals or non-biodegradable products. Use septic-safe toilet paper and avoid flushing other products like feminine hygiene products or flushable wipes. If you need septic tank repair in Decatur, IL, contact Septic Specialist Inc. today. 

24 Feb. 2020

What You Should Expect from Grease Trap Pumping

Grease Trap Box Decatur IllinoisGrease traps are an essential component of a well-functioning kitchen in a hotel, restaurant, or other foodservice industry. Without a grease trap, you would constantly be dealing with plumbing problems because of the amount of grease that’s washed down the drain. However, for the grease trap to work properly, it’s important to regularly contact drain cleaning services in Decatur, IL, for grease trap cleaning. Here’s what you need to know about grease traps and the cleaning process and why it’s important. 

Why Grease Traps Are Important

Grease traps are important for businesses, even if there’s only a small amount of food being prepared or if the food isn’t very greasy. One reason a grease trap is important is that it’s required by law. Commercial establishments with kitchens must have a grease trap to be in compliance with the law. The other reason is that regardless of how much food is prepared or how greasy the food is, any amount of grease that goes down the drain on a regular basis is a problem for the plumbing. Grease can quickly collect and block the pipes, causing major problems with how smoothly your business can run. Blocked pipes are not only inconvenient, but they can also become dangerous because the wastewater can back up into the building and cause property damage and health hazards.

How Grease Traps Work

Grease traps catch oil, grease, and fats that are flushed down the drain so that they don’t go into the sewer line. This separates the grease from solid food and wastewater. There are three main components of a grease trap. The first is called a grease trap container. This captures the wastewater that goes through the sinks. The wastewater cools down, and the oils and grease harden. The wastewater is then forced through the crossover pipe, and the hardened grease stays in the container. The crossover pipe provides secondary filtration so that most of the solids are removed from the water. Then the water goes to the outgoing line, and the filtered water goes into the sewer system. 

When to Clean Grease Traps

Your grease trap should be cleaned when no more than a third of the trap is taken up by food and grease. Many health departments require cleaning twice a year, but many restaurants need to have the grease trap cleaned every week. The amount and type of food being prepared and the size of the trap can all affect how frequently the grease trap needs to be pumped.                                                  

Cleaning Out Grease Trap Decatur IllinoisHow the Process Works

When the professionals come to pump your tank, they’ll measure how much fat, oil, and grease has built up. The waste material is then pumped out of the trap. The pumping company is responsible for disposing of this waste in an environmentally safe and legal manner. The material stuck to the walls of the grease trap will be cleaned, and then the technicians will inspect all the components and run a test to make sure the wastewater flows properly following the service.

Maintaining Your Grease Trap

In addition to regularly hiring grease trap cleaning services in Decatur, IL, you can keep your grease trap in good condition by throwing away food solids before washing dishes. Avoid pouring boiling water into the trap or using any drain cleaners or other chemicals that might harm the beneficial bacteria. To learn more about grease trap care, contact Septic Specialist Inc. today.

24 Jan. 2020

The Benefits of Regular Grease Trap Cleaning

Draining Oil Fat from Pan to Bucket Decatur, ILGrease traps allow for the disposal of one of the primary byproducts of commercial food operations — grease fat. It allows grease, which is generated in bulk within many commercial kitchens, to be safely and effectively channeled away from the sewage system, where it would otherwise wreak havoc. Instead, it’s caught in a trap and is periodically removed by grease trap cleaning services that dispose of the grease properly.

While some restaurant proprietors take a lackadaisical approach to the maintenance of the grease traps that protect their sewers from clogs and backups, it’s nonetheless important to engage in regular cleaning and maintenance. There are many benefits that restaurants can realize through regular grease trap cleaning in Decatur, IL. Keep reading to learn more about a few of these many benefits.

Prevents Clogs

When grease is flushed down a regular sewer pipe, it ends up causing clogs somewhere downstream from your kitchen. When grease is hot, it’s a liquid form, but when it cools, it becomes solid and waxy. When that happens, it can cling to the internal walls of your sewage plumbing, especially near bends and joints, where there’s a suitable anchor point for accumulation. Over time, those deposits of waxy fat can completely enclose sewer pipes, resulting in clogs that cause nasty, costly back-ups. Sewage back-ups aren’t just inconvenient in the context of a commercial kitchen, as restaurants depend on free-flowing sewer lines to engage in business. When the sewage backs up, the kitchen activity grinds to a halt. Regular grease trap cleaning will prevent back-ups of grease that will pour over into the sewer, causing clogs that can cost hundreds of dollars in cleaning and lost revenue.

Prevents Tank Damage

As grease and fat ages and breaks down in the tank of your grease trap, it undergoes some chemical changes that can wreak havoc on your system over time. Of particular concern is the sulfuric acid that is formed when fat and grease break down. That acid is a powerful corrosive that can damage the grease trap tank and back up to damage other components in the system if left uncleaned for long stretches of time. Cleaning removes grease from the trap before the sulfuric acid can develop, which will keep your system in good operating order.

Prevents Environmental Damage

An unattended grease trap that hasn’t been cleaned in a long time can constitute a significant threat to the local ecosystem. Grease traps have a finite capacity, and when they become overfilled, grease can leak out into the environment. That can lead to contamination of groundwater as well as surface bodies of water. Also, if the grease trap is full of old grease, the leakage can include sulfuric acid, which can damage local flora and pollute water as well.

Prevents Foul Odors

Grease in Grease Trap Decatur, ILGrease is considered an organic compound because it’s largely comprised of oils and fats derived from plants and animals. Therefore, as it ages and breaks down, it can release foul odors that can be overwhelming in the area of your grease trap. If left unmitigated for long, those unsavory smells can back up into the restaurant, which won’t endear your establishment to patrons. Those same smells will endear your establishment to vermin and other wildlife, however, which is even more reason to have your grease trap cleaned regularly.

If you own or operate a restaurant and utilize a grease trap, there are many benefits to regularly cleaning the trap. Doing so can prevent foul smells, messy and expensive clogs, and damaged equipment. To learn more about the benefits of regular grease trap cleaning, contact Septic Specialist at (217) 855-5622.

24 Jan. 2020

Tree Roots and Your Septic System: All You Should Know

There are few things worse than flushing your toilet and learning that you have a clog somewhere in your septic system. Under normal circumstances, as long as you perform regular maintenance on your septic tank, including Cement Septic Tank Near Tree Decatur, ILseptic tank pumping, your system will function reliably without inconvenient clogs. However, the tree roots from nearby trees can foul up your system quickly, which will require the assistance of drain cleaning in Decatur, IL, to get your system online once again.

Tree roots are such a problem for your septic system because they are relentless in their search for the very things your system will have in excess, namely water and nutrients. If they penetrate your tank or field lines, it could take more than a drain cleaning to restore your system to its full function. Keep reading to learn what you need to know about tree roots and your septic system.

Why Are Roots a Problem?

Roots can cause problems for your septic system even if you don’t know that there’s an issue. When roots find a way to grow into your septic system, the result can be thousands of dollars in damage. In some cases, you may even have to install a new septic system altogether. Roots can clog the pipes and drains that allow your system to function as it should. That can lead to annoying back-ups initially, but eventually, it can completely render your system inoperable.

Why Do Roots Seek Septic Systems?

Even if you don’t have any trees near your septic system, they can still be a problem. That’s because trees are constantly in search of two of the three basic needs that they have. Those resources, water and nutrients, can both be found in your septic system, so trees will fan out roots for what may seem like a great distance to get inside your septic tank and drain lines.

How to Know If Roots Are a Problem

You obviously can’t see into your septic tank, drains, or field lines, so it can sometimes be difficult to identify the problem when you experience reoccurring septic system issues. However, there some other factors that can indicate that tree roots may be the culprit behind your septic system woes. For example, if there are strong sewage odors near your house, if you have slow drains or frequent clogs, or if the ground around your septic tank is perpetually soggy, that could indicate roots have infiltrated your system. Also, if you see patches of green grass over your drain lines, that means tree roots have penetrated the drains and have allowed water and sewage to leak out steadily.

How to Remove Roots

Draining Septic Tank Decatur, ILWhen it comes to removing troublesome tree roots from your septic system, there are only two reliable ways to manage the situation effectively. One is to use root killing chemicals in your septic system. These chemicals, known as contact chemicals, will only kill the part of the tree they touch. In this case, that is the roots that have permeated your system. They spare the tree overall, however. The other method of removing roots is more labor-intensive, as it involves using machinery to clear the lines from the drains. In many cases, they grow back, but that method can provide temporary relief. Also, the area around the field lines and tank can be dug up, and the roots removed manually, but that’s a laborious process.

If you have a septic system and experience frequent clogs and perpetually slow drains, it may be because of tree roots that have infiltrated your system. To learn more about how tree roots can impact your septic system and septic tank pumping in Decatur, IL, contact Septic Specialist Inc. at (217) 855-5622.

24 Jan. 2020

Understanding the Dos and Don’t of Grease Trap Cleaning

Grease trap in floor decatur illinoisHomeowners can usually avoid the problems associated with pouring grease down the drain by simply throwing it away rather than flushing it down the pipes. However, businesses and multifamily complexes can’t always control the grease that goes into the plumbing system, which is where grease traps come in handy. The grease traps keep grease out of septic systems and sewers to help prevent backups and other problems. Here’s what you need to know about the importance of hiring regular grease trap cleaning services in Decatur, IL, and some dos and don’ts associated with cleaning grease traps.

Do Trust Professionals

The most important aspect of grease trap maintenance is to entrust the installation and maintenance to professionals. Failing to leave the installation to professionals can cause numerous problems down the road. You’ll probably notice right away if a grease trap isn’t installed correctly because there will be little or no grease accumulation in the trap. Professional maintenance is also important because the technicians will be able to detect any potential problems when cleaning the grease trap. They’ll also know how to do the job in compliance with the law and make the whole process much easier for you. If proper procedures aren’t followed, you could be subject to fines and penalties, so it’s best to have it done correctly the first time.

Do Recognize Signs of Trouble

It’s also important to recognize when your grease trap needs to be cleaned or when there may be other problems. Bad odors are a common sign that your grease trap needs to be cleaned. These odors occur when bacteria eat the grease and oil in the trap, and the grease itself can give off an unpleasant smell as it sits for long periods of time. You’ll also notice slowing drains when the grease trap needs to be cleaned. The drains should run smoothly unless there’s an issue with the grease trap. Your bathrooms can be affected by dirty grease traps as well because all the plumbing in the building is affected. If you’re experiencing water pressure problems or issues with the toilets, it may be because you need to contact a grease trap cleaning service.

Don’t Use Harsh Chemicals for Cleaning

grease in trap decatur illinoisA major mistake some people make is using harsh chemicals or cleaning solvents in an attempt to clean out grease traps. Using any enzymes or chemicals that are meant to break down fats and oils are usually not proven effective and may end up causing more damage or simply separate the grease from the water. This causes more grease to go into the wastewater system and form clogs. Many municipalities actually forbid the use of these products in public wastewater systems. If you use a septic system, you could cause further problems because these products often kill off bacteria that are necessary for keeping the right balance in your septic system in order for it to function properly.

Don’t Overlook Regular Cleanings

Finally, be sure not to overlook regular cleanings. Although it’s important to recognize the signs that you need to clean a full grease trap, it’s even better to not let it get to that point so that you can avoid unnecessary septic repair in Decatur, IL. Most grease traps need to be cleaned at least every three months; however, many require more frequent cleanings than that, every 30 to 60 days.

If you’re ready to schedule your grease trap cleaning, contact Septic Specialist Inc. today by calling 217-855-5622.

24 Jan. 2020

3 Main Things You Should Know about Your Septic System

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.

Covered Septic Tank Decatur, ILIf 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

Draining Septic Tank Decatur ILPart 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 Septic Specialists at (217) 855-5622 or (309) 830-3962.

06 Nov. 2019

Choosing the Right Septic Tank Repair Company

Selecting the Right Septic Tank Repair Company

If you depend on a septic system in your residence, you probably know that things can sometimes go wrong. When they do, you may be left with more than a huge mess and foul odors. Septic problems can also pose a significant risk to your health if not properly installed, repaired, or maintained. Therefore, when you must attend to septic tank repair, it’s important that the company you hire is knowledgeable, experienced, and professional.

But how do you find the right provider of septic system repair in Bloomington, Illinois, to meet those criteria? It’s not as easy as selecting the first company that pops up in your search engine of choice. There are some key characteristics you can look for in a septic repair company that can help you make sure you find the right service provider for your needs. Keep reading to learn a few tips to use when selecting the right septic tank repair company.

Ask About Training

As is the case in many technical fields, repairing and maintaining septic tanks requires considerable training and expertise to properly execute. The average plumber isn’t equipped to deal with a septic system issue because septic systems have problems and repairs that are unique from those associated with sanitary sewer plumbing. Also, many states require that septic system repair and maintenance providers get special licensing, so make sure the provider you select is well-trained and properly licensed in your area.

septic tank in tall grasses bloomington il

Knows the Ropes

Because septic systems are designed by nature to store and process waste safely, many repairs and procedures must be performed only after obtaining a permit. For a plumber who has little experience with septic systems, the permit process may be unfamiliar. Therefore, make sure you choose a septic service with plenty of experience in securing septic repair and installation permits. That will help speed the process and make sure your septic system is up and running as soon as possible.

Find Full-Spectrum Service

It’s important when installing a septic system that you find a company that offers a full scope of services related to the septic field. For example, you may find that some services only perform installations. That can be problematic when you need maintenance and repairs performed on your system. Also, some companies may just perform maintenance but not repairs. Therefore, it’s wise to find a company that can cover all your bases.

Emergency Response

black septic tank in ground bloomington il

When you experience a septic system malfunction, it can render your home unlivable until you can get the proper repair made. Living in a home with a septic system malfunction is not only unpleasant but downright dangerous. Therefore, make sure that you build a relationship with a septic company that offers emergency response regardless of the day or time that you have trouble. You simply can’t live without your septic system, so make sure that you have an ally that will respond immediately to limit your inconvenience and the damage done to your property.

Awesome Customer Service

Customer service is critical when it comes to selecting a septic service provider. You want technicians who are patient, kind, and knowledgeable. You may not know exactly how your septic system works, but you know what can happen when it fails to do so. Look for a septic company that has technicians who are willing to explain what they’re doing in detail so you can understand the repairs being made and how they impact your system overall. Find a company that offers multiple channels of communication, that are responsive when you have questions or need a repair quote, and that treats your property with respect.

If you’re looking for a septic system service provider to repair and maintain your system use these tips to find a solid company that will satisfy your needs. To learn more about how to select the right septic tank repair service, contact Septic Specialist Inc. at (309) 830-3962.

06 Nov. 2019

Preparing Your Home for Septic Tank Pumping

Tips on Preparing Your Home for Septic Tank Pumping

Your septic system can work for many years without a problem if you have it regularly cleaned and inspected by a septic pumping service in Bloomington, IL. Regardless of how familiar you are with septic systems, there are some things you can do to make the pumping process go more smoothly, whether you need your tank pumped now or in a couple of years. Here are some things you should do in preparation for septic pumping.

Keep Track of Pumping Schedule

woman cleaning septic tank with pressure hose for septic tank cleaning in bloomington il

If you’re unsure of when the tank was last pumped, it’s a good idea to start keeping track of the pumping schedule now. This will ensure that your tank is pumped at the right intervals so that you save money by not pumping it too frequently, but that you don’t let it get too full either. Septic tanks generally need to be pumped every three to five years, but this can vary depending on how many people live in your home.

In addition, some systems have additional components that need to be inspected more frequently, so it’s important to check with professionals to learn what type of system you have and how often it should be pumped and inspected.

Recognize Signs You Need Pumping

Although you need to keep track of how long it’s been since your tank was last pumped, it’s also important to recognize signs that your tank may be full, even if it’s sooner than you expected. Slow drains in the shower or toilet are usually a good indicator that the tank is full. In addition, you’ll probably notice an unpleasant odor coming from the drains or toilets. Standing water or an especially lush patch of grass around the drain field indicates that the waste has run out of room in the tank. And of course, if sewage begins backing up into the home, you need to have the tank pumped right away.

Know System Locations

It’s not always easy to pinpoint the exact location of your system components, especially if you didn’t live in the home when the system was installed. But knowing the location is important so that you can avoid doing things that would damage the system and so that the pumping technicians can get to work more quickly.

There may be records with local government offices, but if not, the tank is located outside the foundation where the plumbing exits the home, so that’s a good starting point in locating it. The septic company can also help you locate it. Once it’s been located, it’s a good idea to draw a map so that you avoid parking heavy machinery or planting large trees over the area.

Watch What You Flush

You can make the pumping process easier and reduce problems by watching what you flush down the toilet and drains. Don’t put grease, harsh chemicals, kitty litter, or female hygiene products into the system. You should use septic-approved toilet paper and conserve water as much as possible. This can reduce the frequency of pumping.

Know the Costhose pumping out septic tank for septic tank cleaning in bloomington il

Another way to be more prepared to have your tank pumped soon is to know the cost and look for ways to save money. Get a quote beforehand so that you know what to expect and then once the tank is pumped, ask about how full the tank was so you can better calculate when it should be pumped next. Contact Septic Specialist Inc. today for a quote.

06 Sep. 2019

Things You Should Expect from Septic Tank Pumping

How Septic Tank Pumping Works

It may seem as if your septic system can just operate by itself, but this is definitely not the case. For your septic tank to work properly, it needs to be pumped on a regular basis,  ideally every three years. Here’s a brief rundown on the process of septic pumping.

septic tank pumping

Locating the Access Lids

Your technicians won’t be able to get into your septic tank without first finding the access lids. Typically, access lids reside six to twelve inches below the surface, and once located and exposed, the technician can prepare the tank for maintenance.

Analyzing Liquid Level

The liquid level with the septic tank can tell the technician a lot about how well the septic system is operating. For instance, if the level of the liquid is below the outlet pipe, your tank may be suffering from a leak. If it’s noticeably higher than the outlet pipe, then there might be a disruption in the pipe to the drain field or a faulty pipe itself. Once these issues are taken into consideration, the pumping can take place.

The Pumping Process

Lowering the hose into the access hole, the technician will attach the other end of the hose to the powerful pump located on their truck. Powering the pump on will remove the solid and liquid waste out of the tank and into the truck’s container. While this is taking place, the technician will be mindful of how the outlet pipe is performing. If there is any backflow out of the pipe, there may be an issue with your septic system that will have to be fixed. A significant amount of backflow could be an indication that there is a drain field backup, while a small backflow could be a sign that there’s a sagging pipe in the drain field. Hopefully, there will be no evident backflow coming from the outlet pipe.

septic truck used for septic tank pumping

Cleaning the Tank

Once most of the pumping is complete, the technician will utilize a tool known as a septage spoon to backflush the tank. This is done in an effort to loosen up the sludge that resides in the corners of the tank and then removing it. Finally, the technician will spray the walls of the tank to remove the last vestiges of waste and sludge.


Finally, the technician will inspect the tank for any leaks, structural damage, damaged baffles or cracks. If any problems are spotted, they will make recommendations on what’s required for repair. Once the inspection is complete, the technician will close the access lids and reapply the six to twelve inches of soil to cover the lids, thus completing the process.

As you can see, pumping is more than just removing waste. It’s an essential part of an examination of the whole septic system. Only by pumping will you know if your tank is performing at its best. If you haven’t had your septic tank pumped in more than three years, call Septic Specialist at (217) 855-5622. We’re the leader in septic cleaning in Decatur, IL, and you can count on us to make sure your septic system is working the way it’s supposed to. Give us a call today!

05 Sep. 2019

The Impact of Weather on Your Septic System

How Weather Events Effect Your Septic System

Properly maintained, your septic system should be effective at disposing of waste. Just like sewer systems, however, it can be vulnerable to extreme weather events. Unlike city sewers, if you encounter a problem with your septic tank, it’s up to you to get it fixed. Examining your septic system after extreme weather such as cold snaps, flooding, and major storms can stop major problems from developing, so here is how different kinds of weather can impact your septic system.

heavy rain affecting your septic system


Your septic tank relies on a drain field for filtering out waste and releasing clean water into the environment. During heavy rains, it’s possible that the drain field will fill with water and become oversaturated. The flooded drain field will then be unable to treat the water, giving the water from your septic tank nowhere to go. Once the system is flooded, a major concern is the possibility of backups. Without any place to exit, the wastewater can potentially back up into your home’s pipes and toilets. If you notice clogging taking place in your home after a heavy rainstorm, it’s highly possible that a backed-up septic tank due to flooding is the culprit. At this point, you’d be wise hire experts in septic cleaning, so the backup doesn’t get any worse.

Leaking Sewage

Another unpleasant side effect that comes with a flooded drain field is the leakage of sewage out of the tank and directly into the ground. Untreated sewage can pollute the groundwater, causing serious environmental damage and create health hazards for you and your neighbors. Needless to say, if this occurs, you’ll have to have it taken care of immediately.


Extreme cold has the potential freeze components of your septic system. When this happens, the metabolic rate of the anaerobic bacteria that you depend on for breaking down sewage slows, limiting their ability to do so. To avoid this possibility, cover your septic tank with an insulating cover during the winter months and make sure there’s plenty of vegetation on top of and surrounding the tank as well.

frozen pipes and septic systems from extreme weather

Freezing Pipes

Pipes in your septic tank are as vulnerable to freezing as the pipes in your home and can suffer the same effects. If a pipe is leaking, the water within the pipes can freeze during the winter, further damaging your septic system. Even if your pipes aren’t destroyed by frozen water, clogs can result which can make the wastewater freeze over as well, further compounding the problem. The most important thing you can do is make sure leaky pipes are fixed before the winter when freezing water can do far more damage.

Storm Debris

Violent storms send debris flying in every direction, and this includes within your septic tank. While you can’t do much about the presence of some debris, keeping a well-ordered yard and regularly trimming and pruning trees and bushes will keep the potential for damage resulting from debris in your immediate area to a minimum.

To make sure your septic system is ready for whatever weather threats await, call the Septic Specialist at (217) 855-5622. We’re experts in septic repair in Decatur, IL, and we’re here to help. Give us a call today!

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