Septic tank maintenance – Essential reasons to act now

19 Jan, 2021

Septic tank maintenance – Essential reasons to act now

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If as a homeowner you maintain a property with a septic tank, you’ll know that maintenance is required. However, apart from regular checks by professionals you can monitor and conduct a degree of septic tank maintenance yourself. In fact, it is a wise and careful homeowner who looks for signs of problems. If you check in on the tank from time to time you can avoid any major issues between scheduled checks. Here are the reasons why and how to look for any unusual signs…

Reasons Why You Need to Maintain Your Septic System Regularly

septic tank maintenance
Checking your septic tank and water quality regularly is essential

Wastewater from the bathroom, kitchen sinks, and laundry, where do all of these go? If your area doesn’t have a centralized sewer system, then the wastewater from these areas go into the septic tank. A septic tank is a technologically advanced tank, which separates floatable substances such as oils and solid matter from the wastewater. It also absorbs organic matter from the wastewater, which goes into a soil absorption field.

Now, why do we need to maintain our septic tank? There may be a lot of common reasons, but there are other factors why maintaining a septic tank is beneficial.

Advantages of septic tank maintenance

  • Cost-related reasons

The main reason why you need to maintain your septic tank regularly is so that you can avoid spending more in the future. As stated by the Environmental Protection Agency, the regular maintenance fees for septic tanks costs $200 to $500 every three to five years.

But don’t fret! Paying that amount instead of paying $3,000 to $7,000 for a septic tank repair or replacement is better and extremely cheaper. Lack of regular maintenance of the septic tank is risky and could lead to issues in the future that may cost you more than it should have.

Moreover, the more effective you maintain a septic tank, the longer it will last as well.

  • Helps protect the environment 

The main purpose of a septic tank is to be a storing place for wastewater. It collects the sewage and wastewater and processes it to separate floatable substances and solid matter. This way, it can filter and clean the wastewater before releasing it again to nature.

Now, try to imagine all of that water, contaminated with harmful toxins from a household’s untreated wastewater, going back to our natural resources. It could bring danger not just to our drinking water but also to the environment.

Releasing contaminated wastewaters could also harm the local ecosystem, mainly plants on the land, and corals, and other living organisms in the ocean where wastewaters from septic tanks go. That’s why it’s important to keep your septic system regularly maintained.

  • Stay healthy with your neighbours

Septic tanks are created not just to collect wastewaters but also to keep houses and domestic water clean. As many of us know, wastewater is full of contaminants and pollutants that could pose a great threat to people who are exposed to it. A healthy-working septic tank separates all those contaminants from the water before releasing it to a draining field or the ocean. This process makes it safer for those who are exposed to the wastewater’s final destination.

  • Protect your lawn and property value

Repairing a faulty septic tank requires digging up your lawn. Not only will it damage your lawn, but it will also cost you additional fees for lawn repair. Aside from that, it can also cause flooding around your drain fields. When this happens, your soil may not be able to handle the amount of water that it’s catering to, which may result in over-saturation and making it unable to absorb water anymore.

A damaged septic tank can decrease your property’s value and may cause a costly legal liability.

7 Tell tale signs of a failing septic system 

Free flowing drains are a sign that general flow is good
  1. Your sinks, bathtubs, and showers drain slower than usual.
  2. Sewage is back flowing inside your home. If the water is smelly, and has unwanted contaminants, then it means it came from a failing septic system.
  3. The toilet won’t flush.
  4. Regular gurgling sounds coming from the plumbing system
  5. The growth of Alga on nearby lakes or ponds. Check also if there is green, spongy grass developing around the septic tank. This means that there could be a leak from the tank.

    If the green, spongy grass is alarmingly great in number, then the leak happened before the wastewater could be safely released on the draining field.
  6. There are bad odours around the drain field, which are coming from the septic tank.
  7. Unwanted water is accumulating in your yard. Large amounts of water that can be found on your drain field or yard could be caused by non-stop raining. However, if these waters still won’t go down even after the rain, then there could be a problem with the septic tank.


Do’s and don’ts of septic tank maintenance 

The Do’s

  • Check your septic tank regularly and make sure to maintain it whenever it’s needed.
  • Ensure that all lids to your septic tank are closed and secured.
  • Pump your septic tank effectively every time it’s necessary.
  • Build a system where water from roof drains and land are directed away from your drain field.
  • Make sure that the septic tank lid could be easily accessible, for maintaining purposes.


And the Don’ts

  • Use additives in the septic tank.
  • Throw chemicals on the drain. There are many things you shouldn’t throw on the drain especially when you have a septic tank, and number one is harmful chemicals.
  • Use your draining field as parking spaces.
  • Put non-biodegradable matter into the tank


septic tank maintenance
Keep tools handy for quick checks and action if necessary

Septic tank maintenance in summary

Regular septic tank maintenance can be a handful, especially if you’re a busy person who travels away from home. However, in order to prolong the life of your septic tank, then you have to work for it. Inspect your septic tank regularly before scheduled maintenance can help you detect any of the signs listed above. so you would know what to do and how to act on it.

If you notice even a minimal sign that there could be something wrong with your septic tank, then it’s better to try and fix it before it gets worse. You can always call the local plumber to inspect the system, especially if you’re suspecting that there could be something wrong but you’re unsure about it.

The key to having a robust septic tank is to follow the rules for it. The main reason tanks fail apart from long-time use is that the owners do something that could potentially damage it, mostly when done frequently.

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