Regular service appointments are an essential part of keeping a septic system functioning properly. Whether you're talking about the holding tank, the drainage field or the outflow lines from your home's plumbing, a problem in any of these components can have major repercussions. By understanding how to address the basic maintenance of your septic system, you can avoid many of these potential problems and know who to call when service or repairs are needed.
Outflow and Your Holding Tank
While there's little to worry about from your drains to your tank, that doesn't mean that you should ignore it. Slow drainage, improper air flow, or compromised pipes can all cause problems in your home that can't be fixed easily. Make sure that you know where your outflow lines run in your yard, and keep any plants with large root systems well away from that area to prevent ruptures.
The tank itself can be most effectively maintained with annual inspections, and regularly scheduled clean-outs. The size of your tank and the number of people using it will determine how frequently your tank needs cleaned out, so talk to a septic system professional, like those at Martin Septic Service Inc, to get precise timing. Between inspections, make sure you're using your tank properly by keeping food waste, trash and personal hygiene products out of your drains.
Your Drainage Field
While the drainage field will be the last place that symptoms of a problem should normally manifest, that doesn't eliminate the need for keeping an eye on it. In most cases, your drainage field can be spotted by looking for the greenest patch of grass in your yard, but it's still a good idea to have a professional locate and mark it. This will help you avoid planting anything in that area, or placing any structures over it.
The most important maintenance task you can use to help preserve the effectiveness of your septic drain field is regularly aerating the soil. Tightly compressed soil doesn't allow waste water to seep effectively, so periodic aeration will help prevent it from becoming too compacted. As a result, you'll have a reduced risk of surface flooding and water backing up into your holding tank.
When properly maintained, septic systems can last for decades without the need for any major repairs. The more you know about your specific system, its age and capacity, the more effectively you can address the basic needs of your system long before any problems arise.