In the US, about 25% of homeowners use septic tanks. Septic tanks could last more than 20 years if you maintain them.
When you don’t maintain your septic tank, you increase the number of problems you could have easily avoided. You’ll know when it needs replacement because the most common problem is foul-smelling wastewater. How often should you maintain your septic system? And what should you avoid in the process?
We’re here to answer all your questions today. Let’s explore the common septic maintenance mistakes and how to avoid them.
1. Misusing Your Garbage Disposal
People often think garbage disposal can handle anything, but this is not the case. It would help if you only used garbage disposal for biodegradable waste, such as food scraps and paper. Avoid putting coffee grounds, grease, oil, or non-biodegradable waste down the removal, as this can clog a residential septic system, and repairing septic tanks is no easy task – nor is it cheap.
2. Misusing Your Toilets
Flushing non-biodegradable items like paper towels can clog your system and reduce efficiency. It would help if you only used toilets for human waste and toilet paper. Avoid pouring chemicals down your bathroom, such as cleaners and “flushable” wipes. They can further clog your system and harm the bacteria that break down sewage.
Another common mistake is overloading your system by having too many people using it. You can avoid it by spacing out showers and doing laundry in smaller loads.
3. Ignoring Small Problems
You should never ignore minor problems with your septic system. If you notice wet spots in your yard, sewage odors, or slow drains, you should have your septic system inspected as soon as possible. A clog in the system could cause these problems and, if left untreated, could lead to a much more severe and expensive problem.
4. Not Pumping Full Septic Tanks
Septic systems handle a specific amount of waste. Overloading the system with too much water can cause it to fail. It can lead to various problems, including sewage backups, foul odors, and leach field failure.
The solids and scum can build up and clog the leach field when you’re not cleaning septic systems. It can lead to expensive repairs or even replacement. Have your septic tank pumped every 3-5 years by a professional septic tank service.
You should also avoid pumping too much as it can cause problems like clogging and system failure. To avoid these issues, it is crucial to only pump when necessary and to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for how often to pump. Overpumping can also lead to soil erosion and negate the benefits of a septic system.
5. Ignoring the Drain Field
A drain field is an integral part of a septic system; if it is not maintained, it can lead to several problems. The drain field is responsible for filtering out wastewater contaminants before they are discharged into the environment. If the drain field is not maintained correctly, these contaminants can build up and cause pollution.
Avoid Common Septic Maintenance Mistakes to Preserve Your Wastes System
While septic tanks require low maintenance, common septic maintenance mistakes can lead to problems if not handled immediately. The good news is that these mistakes are avoidable with little knowledge and care. You can keep your septic tank working for many years by understanding what not to do.
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