Septic tanks are an integral part of your home’s plumbing system. They store waste that isn’t able to drain through your pipes and then slowly break it down over time in the soil, where it safely joins groundwater again. However, your septic tank must be regularly emptied to avoid clogs and failure, which can cause wastewater to back up into your home. So, if you’re on a schedule with your local septic company to have it pumped, you should know how to recognize the signs that it’s time.
One of the most obvious indicators that your septic tank emptying near me is full is a foul smell near or in your drains. It’s also important to note that your home’s toilets may not be flushing as well as usual, and if your bathtub or shower is backed up this could mean that the solid waste in your septic tank is reaching capacity.
When wastewater enters your septic tank, it separates into three different groups. The bottom layer is known as sludge, which consists of solid waste that sinks to the bottom of the tank. The middle layer is scum, which consists of oil and other organic matter that floats on top until it’s broken down by bacteria. Finally, the clear liquid that exits your septic tank is known as effluent. This liquid flows through a pipe into your septic tank’s soil absorption field, where it gets filtered through gravel and dirt before entering the groundwater supply.
However, your septic tank can only handle a certain amount of wastewater on a daily basis. If too much wastewater is put into the septic tank, it can overflow into the drain field and cause a biomat in which the soil can’t absorb any more water. This can restrict the flow of wastewater into and out of your septic tank, and if the biomat is too thick, the leach field can flood with sewage.
Besides being unpleasant, a flooded septic tank is dangerous to health. If the septic tank is filled with raw sewage, it will need to be immediately pumped out by professionals.
In addition to regular pumping, there are other ways to help your septic system run smoothly. For example, make sure your septic tank is the right size for the number of people living in your home. Homes with larger families use more water and put more solids into their septic tanks than those of empty nesters, so it’s important to have the proper size tank installed.
You can also reduce the amount of waste that goes into your septic tank by making simple changes. Feminine hygiene products, paper towels, and coffee grounds should go in the trash can rather than the drains, and you should try to limit your household’s shower or laundry usage. For example, if multiple family members are taking showers or washing clothes at the same time, consider installing efficient showerheads and faucets that limit water flow. It’s also a good idea to have your septic tank’s drain field periodically aerated. This involves injecting compressed air into the soil to break up clumps of sludge and help wastewater flow more freely.