Households usually depend on septic tanks to treat wastewater or liquid wastes naturally.
But cleaning failing septic tank systems is not easy, and you must keep a few things in mind to ensure they are always functioning correctly. Unless you take proper care, there’s a good chance you will be left with no choice but to replace it over time, which can be a hassle.
Instead, opt for routine septic system maintenance from a septic service provider, which will help you save big bucks, maintain your household fixtures in good condition and make the house a healthy space for your family. Otherwise, you might have to tolerate the foul smell of wastewater. Plus, sludge and scum levels can build up in your tank.
But apart from the obvious, such as not pouring grease down your sink, this guide will take you through how to keep your septic tank system in the best condition. Let’s take a look at these helpful septic system tips.
All Purpose Septic Tanks/ Household Sewage Treatment Plants
Most modern houses in Australia have combined septic and sullage systems to ensure they can most effectively treat human waste and wastewater. Together they are often referred to as all-purpose septic tanks. So, before we move on to how to best maintain septic tanks, let us first explain what septic and sullage systems are, how a septic system works, and how the wastewater treatment process goes.
Septic tanks have been used for centuries and are very effective in breaking down human waste into a liquid form known as effluent. Once the human waste is broken down, the liquid leaves the tank and gets transferred to a transpiration trench system. And to do this, beneficial bacteria are of significant help.
This is where the effluent gets absorbed in the soil and eventually acts as an excellent fertiliser for plants. They benefit significantly from this waste; the wind helps the wastewater evaporate quickly.
If you don’t have an effluent filter, it’s a good idea to install it the next time your septic tank is pumped regularly.
People use a sullage system to dispose of waste generated in their kitchens, showers and laundries through a grease trap.
As the name suggests, the grease trap prevents grease and greywater from entering the trenches. It is best to install one close to the kitchen to easily trap the grease when it flows through the kitchen sink.
We suggest you clean the traps every few months to enjoy the best results. If you have no prior plumbing experience, appoint a plumber to do it on your behalf.
Things To Do To Take Care Of Your Septic Tank
1. Make Sure You Pump The Septic Tank Regularly
To ensure that your septic tank system at home delivers top-notch performance, you must get your septic tank pumped every two to five years. There is no correct answer to how often you should do it. It depends on a range of things, like the tank size, the number of people in your household, and most importantly, the kind of household waste being treated. More frequent pumping ensures no sludge layer and keeps your system in good condition.
For example, if you have a garbage disposal system at home connected to a municipal wastewater system, a lot of solid waste ends up in your septic tank. This simply means you will have to pump your tank more often.
2. Look For Leaks
If you take a walk around the individual septic system in your house and spot areas filled with lush green grass, there’s a high chance of a leak. In such instances, plants can draw a significant amount of nutrition from wastewater. Another way to identify a leak is through the foul smell it emanates.
But we have noticed that it gets challenging for homeowners to identify leaks as most houses’ septic tanks are buried underground. So, we suggest that while you hire a professional to pump the septic tank, ask them also to conduct leak inspections to ensure there are none.
3. Other Ways To Maintain Septic Tanks
As mentioned, the average household septic system uses strong and beneficial bacteria to break down liquid waste. That’s why when you pour a strong chemical solution or household chemicals down the drain, there’s a good chance that the bacteria get killed and disrupt the proper functioning of the septic tank. To avoid this problem, we suggest you stay cautious, use only suitable drain cleaners at home, and maintain your sewage system correctly.
Also, we recommend that you regularly check the depths of scum and solids. When they collect over time, they often occupy a lot of space. In that case, it gets difficult for the wastewater to settle. As a result, you will find a lot of solid particles flowing into the trenches and clogging them.
So, you must keep an eye out and make sure that the trenches are not close to overflowing. Also, ensure that you clear your outdoor drains from blockages.
Tips To Remember
Your septic tank and sump pumps should only ever have human solid waste through the system to ensure the wastewater flows properly. Along with pouring grease down the drain, here are some of the things that could clog your system, so you should never dispose of in your septic tank or municipal sewer system:
- Excessive amounts of toilet paper
- Coffee grounds
- Paper towels
- Facial tissue
- Cat litter
- Food waste
- Cooking oil
- Baby wipes
- Motor oil
You must ensure you dispose of these items correctly in the trash can and make sure they don’t clog your septic tank. We recommend hiring service professionals to inspect your tank regularly. Also, keep an eye on your septic water usage since tanks have limited capacity and up-to-date maintenance records.
Also, remember that planting trees, shrubs, or vegetable gardens on the drain field is not recommended. Tree roots can ensnarl and damaged drain field pipes. Consider utilising plants with shallow root systems.
Maintain Your Septic Tank System Properly; call A Plumbing Expert
You must have now understood how to keep your septic tank in the best condition. There’s no doubt that tanks must be cleaned and pumped often to maintain them in tip-top shape. However, the frequency depends on a few factors like your tank’s location, capacity and the volume of waste it treats.
Most importantly, ensure you keep up with septic tank maintenance to keep your septic system healthy by a trained professional.
If you have a large family and the septic tank in the house is not too big, you will need to clean it regularly and remove sludge layers to avoid needing a replacement. To get your septic tank system cleaned properly, get in touch with a professional plumber soon. Reach out to us! We’re your Sydney septic service professional for blocked drains, hot water systems installation, septic tank maintenance, and other plumbing needs. Keep your plumbing properly maintained with our home maintenance services, and avoid costly repairs!
Until next time, take care!