Septic Tank Care: How To Prevent An Overflow

Posted on: 6 January 2015

Living with a septic system can be much different than living with a sewer system. This is because while sewer systems carry your home's waste water and sewage safely away from your home to a treatment facility, a septic system will process this waste right on your property. Consequently, any failure in the way your septic system works could result in an overflow of sewage into your yard or home.

Repairing your septic system after this happens can be both time consuming and expensive. It is possible for you to prevent an overflow by observing just a few basic rules regarding septic tank maintenance:

Rule #1: Never Flush Anything Other Than Septic-Safe Tissue And Human Waste

Your septic system relies on the ability to quickly breakdown solid wastes in order to make room for incoming sewage. Consequently, flushing items that are not easily broken down can quickly result in an overflow. This includes items such as cigarette butts, feminine hygiene products, diapers, napkins, and paper towels.

Rule #2: Avoid The Use Of Antibacterial Soaps And Cleaners

A septic system uses natural bacteria to breakdown solid waste. When bacteria levels inside your septic tank become compromised, your septic system will no longer be able to breakdown waste in an efficient manner and you could experience an overflow.

The most common way in which bacteria levels are compromised within a septic system is through the use of antibacterial soaps and cleaners, such as bleach. If you absolutely must use this type of cleaner in your home, always take measures to prevent these cleaners from being washed down the drain.

Rule #3: Always Have Your Tank Pumped At Least Once Every 3 Years

Even after taking a host of preventative measures, your septic tank will eventually become full of sludge that cannot be broken down or expelled. If this sludge is not pumped out of the tank, your tank will no longer be able to take on new water and sewage and will overflow. This is why it is so important to have the sludge pumped out of your septic tank every few years.

While the average home will only need to have their tank pumped approximately once every three years, this service may be required on a more frequent basis depending on your home's water consumption. In general, the more water you and your family consume, the more frequently you should pump your septic tank.

In Conclusion

Septic systems can be a very effective and inexpensive way of dealing with your household waste. However, if not cared for properly, septic systems can also be a disaster simply waiting to happen. In order to prevent a sewage disaster in your home, be sure to always follow the the three rules outlined above and consult a qualified septic system contractor to discuss more ways you help safeguard your system against potential failure.

Need more help? Contact a company like American Pumping Service with your questions and concerns.

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