Frequently Asked Questions
Here you'll find a range of customer queries from the most common to the most obscure.
Septic systems are designed to provide many years of household wastewater management but ONLY IF they systems are properly maintained and ONLY IF what you put down your drains is limited to water, toilet paper and...#1 and #2's! Systems that fail prematurely are almost always attributable to improper maintenance and misuse.
So, what's the answer? A septic system that is properly maintained and cared for, can and has lasted for decades. A system that is NOT properly maintained or has anything more going down the drain than that which we've listed above; especially grease, sanitary products, and baby wipes, will absolutely need replacement in short order.
There are a few signs and believe us, you'll definitely know! If/when you start to hear a "gurgling or bubbling" noise, that's a sign that your tank may be full or close to full and you'll need a pump out. A slow drain(s) is also a warning sign. It's possible to miss these signs or not have them at all. What is a most telltale sign is the back-up of sewage in your shower(s)/tub(s) and/or toilet(s). Call us – you'll need us! This could also be a sign of plumbing trouble, so please call our office and we can help diagnose what you may need.
YES! Septic tanks are primarily settling chambers. They allow solids and scum to separate out from the wastewater so clear liquid can be dispensed into the drainfield. Over time, the sludge layer gets thicker leaving less space for wastewater to settle before it's disbursement to the drainfield.
Remember this "rule of thumb": For every gallon you put into your septic tank, a gallon is pushed out to your drainfield. Use your gallon wisely! If you're doing laundry, don't run your dishwasher at the same time. If you're taking a shower, have the next person taking a shower wait a bit before showering. In short, be mindful of how much water you're putting down your drains, at the same time.
Water, human waste (also known as #1 and #2), and toilet paper. That is all! DO NOT pour grease, fats, or oils down ANY drain, flush any sanitary products or baby wipes down the toilets (even baby wipes that say "septic safe" on the label are NOT septic safe) or anything that could damage or clog the system components. The rule is worth repeating: ONLY PUT WATER, HUMAN WASTE AND TOILET PAPER DOWN YOUR DRAINS (please)!
Baby wipes, even if the label says "septic safe," are NOT septic safe as they do not decompose. Avoid feminine hygiene products, condoms, paper towels, diapers, disposal wipes, static cling sheets, paper towels, cat litter, dental floss, hair, Kleeniex/tissue, cigarette butts, and cotton swabs. Anything else you may ask? We would say if it's an item that causes you to take pause and think about it, just don't flush it – be on the safe side!
Garbage disposals have a dramatic impact on the health and well-being of your septic system and shouldn't be used. If you have one and are using it, use it sparingly and avoid placing coffee grounds or eggshells down the disposal.
Grass is the best and ideal cover for drainfields. Plants are not usually recommended because they have roots that can eventually damage septic tanks and drainfields. Try to plant trees and shrubs at least 30 feet away from your drainfield and septic tank. In some cases, a greater setback may be required depending on the root structure and soil type. If you do wish to plant trees/shrubs near a drainfield and/or septic tank, consult an expert who can determine types of plants and distances based on your property.
NO. Growing vegetables over your system is not recommended. Vegetables require watering and excess water in the soil reduces its ability to treat the wastewater. Additionally, some vegetables' root systems are deep and could damage drainfield pipes. Of course, the risk of contaminating food crops with sewage exists.
If you unable to find the answer please Contact us and we will aim to respond to your email within 24 hours, Although we usually respond much sooner.