Septic tank pumping ….. You MUST do it!
Septic tank pumping is something that about one third of all homes in the United States will to have done at some time. If you have a septic tank it will eventually have to be pumped out. But, the good news is that it is a fairly simple process.
All the waste water from your toilet, sinks and washing machine comes together at some point and enters your septic tank. When the waste water flows into the septic tank it begins to separate. The solid matter in the water called sludge will sink to the bottom. The oils, proteins and fats will float to the top and create a scum layer. The remaining water will locate in the middle and is referred to as effluent or gray water. All of this material combined is referred to as sewage.
Your septic systems should have been designed that only the effluent or gray water is discharged from the outlet pipes into the sewage drain field attached to your septic tank. This gray water is then filtered by the soil and is eventually returned to the earth. Have you heard the expression the “grass is always greener over the sewage system”. .
You may have a very well functioning septic system with the proper bacterial ecosystem breaking down the sewage in the tank and the drain field but the sludge and scum layers in your tank will build up over time and will need to be pumped out on occasion. The septic pumping is generally done when the bottom of the scum layer is within about six inches from the tank outlet pipe.
Because the modern sewage system is designed to work so efficiently, people tend to ignore having their septic tank pumped or even checked. Over full septic tank may cause sewage to leak back into your home where toilets will not flush or sinks will not drain out. It can also cause unprocessed waste flooding to go into your drain (leach) field and thus raw sewage can seep above ground and you may be exposed to harmful bacteria and there could be run off into nearby water streams.
Homeowners should properly monitor their septic systems and respond accordingly. Don’t wait until the problem becomes very obvious by then the repairs can be very costly. Major repairs can cost in the thousands of dollars. A little maintenance can go a long way in preventing major problems. Have your septic checked by professionals on a regular basis. The average home generally requires septic tank pumping about every three years. But it is wise to have it checked annually.