Anyone who lives in a rural area should know that more often than not sewage is not disposed in the same way as it would be in a city or large town. Rural residents often depend upon septic tank systems being placed on their property to process waste from their homes, making them responsible for the regular maintenance that these systems require. To illustrate the need for maintenance to avoid septic tank repairs, we will give examples of what can go wrong, and how they can be avoided so that owning a septic system remains worry-free.
The Typical Septic System
The septic system most often found in rural areas will consist of a series of pipes connecting it to the home, a holding tank, a filtering system to separate the solid waste from the liquid and connecting pipes that drain off the liquid waste into the yard, in a designated area called the leech field. These systems are often inspected before installation and tested afterwards, to make sure that it is operating properly.
Ownership of a septic system means that everyone understands the importance of having regular maintenance to catch potential problems before they happen. All too often, nothing is done until the worst happens, like the tank developing a leak, or it backs up into an area away from the leech field. Two easy ways to avoid this from happening include monitoring what goes into it as waste and remembering its physical location to avoid accidents.
When a septic system is installed, the area where the tank is placed should be noted so that no accidental driving or parking of a heavy vehicle can occur. While most tanks are buried deep enough to avoid this, as a general principle it should be avoided to prevent damage to the tank in the future. This includes letting utility workers know where the tank is, especially if you are having grading done on your land. The same goes for the pipes leading from the tank to the house and the drainage pipes leading to the leech field. If any are damaged, they can cause sewage to leak into the land around your home.
Some physical damage cannot be avoided. Shifting soil can damage pipes, or expose them to the elements. Extreme temperature shifts during winters can reach to where the tank is buried, and cause it to expand and crack. Regular maintenance by a licensed provider of septic tanks and septic tank repairs not only ensures that the holding tank is pumped out regularly but also includes a thorough physical inspection of the equipment and can spot potential cracks and leaks.
What Goes In Does Not Always Come Out
The most important thing to remember when using a septic tank system is that all the drains in your home lead to the septic tank, not just the toilet. Not everything is good for it and if the wrong substances enter the septic system, they can cause potentially expensive problems in the future. For example, to prevent unnecessary clogs in the holding tank, never put cooking oils, grease or caustic chemicals of any kind down your kitchen or bathroom drains. These items can congeal, clog up the filtering system or even potentially cause damage to the tank interior, or the pipes.
As far as the toilet is concerned, you can prevent septic tank repairs in the future by not putting anything in there to be flushed away that is not rated for use in a septic system. This includes feminine products, plastic, cleaning aids and even some brands of toilet paper. Unless it says that it is flushable in a septic system, or biodegradable, on the label, play it safe and do not drop and flush, simple as that. Regular maintenance on the system will prevent clogs from occurring and if there is matter in there that can clog it up, it will be removed when the tank is cleared and inspected.