Maintaining a Safe Septic System

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Things That Can Cause Problems For Your Annual Septic Pumping And How To Remedy Them

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Septic pumping is usually a once-a-year sort of thing. You schedule the service and the contractor comes out and pumps out the tank and preps it to be filled all over again, and there you go. What you do not expect is for the pumping to have problems. Septic tank pumpings don't always happen without incidents, though, so you should know that issues are always a possibility when it comes time to pump out the tank. Here are some of those issues and what you can do to remedy the problem. 


Without a doubt, the number one problem that prevents a septic contractor from pumping out your tank is a blockage. Either the blockage covers the access port above ground, or it covers the opening in the side of the tank where the waste from your home empties into the tank. All the openings into the tank have to be unclogged in order to create the right amount of vacuum pressure to draw the waste up and out of the full tank.

If any port is blocked, it is akin to extracting thick clay from the surface of wet concrete; it sticks and is stuck until the ports are cleared. Special tools will be necessary to scrape clear the openings into the tank before a proper pumping can be completed. The tools have to be guided into the tank via a sewer camera. 

Not Enough Fluids, Too Much Thick Paper Waste and Hard Waste

Hard waste is supposed to break down into a liquid sludge. As the liquid sludge builds, it fills the tank. The septic contractor pumps out the sludge so that it can build up all over again over the course of the next year. However, if there are not enough waste fluids in the tank, the sludge could harden and become very difficult to extract.

Hard waste does not break down as efficiently, and sometimes, it breaks down and becomes compacted. It is still sludge, but it is so thick that it cannot be budged. Fluids will have to be added, along with a little pressurized water or pressurized air, to break up the compacted sludge enough to pump it out. Not a lot of preventive measures can be taken with this issue beyond flushing the toilet one extra time after each use or using single-ply toilet paper to prevent compaction. 

For more information on septic pumping, contact a company that offers septic services.