Maintaining a Safe Septic System

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Your Guide To Residential Septic Tank Pumping

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Septic tanks are a great way to save money on your monthly water/sewage bill. However, unlike the city sewer system, you need to maintain your own septic tank, which includes septic tank pumping. If you would like to know more, keep reading.

What Is Septic Pumping?

Inside your septic tank, the materials largely separate into liquid and solid waste. Liquid waste travels to the drain field and reenters the soil as effluent. Bacteria helps break down some of the solid waste. However, over time, the tank becomes filled with sludge waste. Professional septic pumping professionals safely and effectively remove most of this sludge, so the tank continues to work.

How Often Should You Pump the Tank?

Unfortunately, there are no strict guidelines regarding when to pump the septic tank. Instead, you must consider:

  • The size of the tank
  • The amount of waste
  • The type of waste

Naturally, smaller tanks fill up faster than larger tanks. However, if you create a lot of waste, you also fill up the tank faster. Similarly, some materials fill up the tank faster than others or are harder and/or impossible for the bacteria to break down.  

In addition, some products that claim to help clean the tank make it ineffective. Harsh chemicals can kill the bacteria so they can't break down waste. In turn, the tank fills up faster than expected.

What Happens if You Wait Too Long?               

If you neglect to pump the tank, it may overflow. This may also cause damage to the system. If your tank overflows, you may notice:

  • Unpleasant odor near the tank
  • Lush green grass above the tank
  • Standing sewage water above the tank

If the tank gets full, drains may become slow to drain, or they may not drain at all. In some cases, the tank may even back waste up into the house.

How Much Does Septic Tank Pumping Cost?

The exact cost of septic tank pumping depends on the company, the location, and the size of the tank. However, on average, you'll pay between $0.23 and $0.40 per gallon, so a 750-gallon tank costs about $175 to $300 for pumping. Overall, however, you'll save money on repairs and replacement if the system overflows.

If you have a septic tank, don't forget to have it pumped. This will prevent many complications, and it will keep the system working longer. If you would like to know more, contact a residential septic tank pumping company.