How To Remove Lid From Septic Tank? (Solution found)

Some tank lids have built-in handles to pull on, but others require a pry bar to lift them open. If the lid comes with handles, ask for the assistance of a friend or family member to remove the lid. If it doesn’t, push a screwdriver into the seam around the lid and insert the pry bar into the gap. Then, press down.

Can you replace the lid on a septic tank?

Concrete septic tank covers require replacement when they develop cracks or other damage. These can be purchased online or at a home improvement store near you. Many septic tanks have risers so the lid is visible above ground.

Do septic tanks have concrete lids?

A septic tank installed before 1975 will have a single 24-inch concrete lid in the center of the rectangle. A shallow excavation with a shovel at those locations should reveal the lid or lids, depending on the year of the tank.

How far apart are the lids on a septic tank?

The distance between lids will be different for each sized tank: 1000 gallon tank = 6-6.5 ft.; 1250 gallon = 7-7.5 ft.; 1500 gallon = 8.5-9 ft.. Dig up the outlet chamber access lid. If you are extraordinarily lucky, the as-built drawing is accurate and you have hit the lids spot on.

Should a septic tank lid be sealed?

Like wells, septic systems have problems if they are not sealed from outside surface water. Most septic systems rely on buried pipes to get rid of the fluids. The lid covers should fit tightly — if they don’t, a company that specializes in septic repairs should be called to fix them.

What causes a septic tank lid to crack?

Cracks in the lid are most common. These can develop because of pressure on top of the lid, such as when a car or tractor drives over the tank. Cracks in lids are fairly easy to fix. Concrete filler is added to the crack and allowed to cure.

How many lids should a concrete septic tank have?

Two or three lids may be included in your system. The average size of a sewage tank is approximately 5 feet by 8 feet. The lid is buried between 4 inches and 4 feet underground in most cases.

What are septic tank lids made of?

Septic tank lids are typically green or black plastic; sometimes they are made of concrete. It’s not always easy to find the lid, though, as unkempt grass, dirt, or debris can conceal the septic tank lid.

How often should you have your septic tank pumped?

Inspect and Pump Frequently The average household septic system should be inspected at least every three years by a septic service professional. Household septic tanks are typically pumped every three to five years.

How often does a 1000 gallon septic tank need to be pumped?

For example, a 1,000 gallon septic tank, which is used by two people, should be pumped every 5.9 years. If there are eight people using a 1,000-gallon septic tank, it should be pumped every year.

Why does my septic tank have 2 lids?

Solid, watertight, buried tank made of concrete, plastic, fiberglass or metal. This tank has a way in (inlet), and a way out (outlet). So, most residential tanks should have (2) lids about 5′ away from each other. A septic tank holds all the liquid waste from your home (toilets, sinks, kitchen, bathtubs, floor drains).

How to Remove a Septic Tank Lid

A septic tank lid is the section of the sewage tank that is located at the top of the tank. This lid must be removed at least once every several years in order to completely empty the tank. Every three to five years, depending on the size of the tank, a homeowner will need to have the septic tank pumped out and cleaned. Avoid allowing the tank to become overflowing, causing it to begin backing up into the home or overflowing out of the opening. The tank suffers serious damage as a result of this.

Step 1 – Locate Septic Tank

A septic tank lid is the section of the sewage tank that is located at the top of the tank. This lid must be removed at least once every several years in order to completely empty the tank. Every three to five years, depending on the size of the tank, a homeowner will need to have the septic tank pumped out and cleaned. Avoid allowing the tank to become overflowing, causing it to begin backing up into the home or overflowing out of the opening. The tank suffers serious damage as a result of this.

Step 2 – Dig Up Septic Tank Lid

A septic tank lid is the section of the sewage tank that is located at the top of the tank. This lid must be removed at least once every several years in order to completely empty the tank. Every three to five years, depending on the size of the tank, a homeowner will need to have the septic tank pumped out and cleaned. Avoid allowing the tank to become overflowing, causing it to begin backing up into the home or overflowing out of the opening. The tank suffers serious damage as a result of this.

Step 3 – Pry Off Septic Tank Lid

The lid of the septic tank might be rather hefty, depending on the size of the tank. On all sides, it is a solid block of concrete that is perfectly flat. It could have a handle that you can pull on. Pry bars are required to remove the majority of septic tank lids from their resting positions. Set the prybar in the seam and push it down until it is secure. As the lid begins to rise out of the hole, have someone assist you in moving it to the side. Place the lid on the ground’s surface so that it is not in the path of the pumping vehicle.

How to Remove Septic Tank Lid: The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide!

Sewage tank maintenance is made easier by understanding how to remove a septic tank lid properly. Fortunately, the removal process is pretty basic and, in the majority of cases, does not necessitate the use of a professional’s assistance. This tutorial is meant to assist homeowners with removing the lid from their septic tank in a correct and safe manner. Let’s get this party started!

How to Remove Septic Tank Lid

Removing the cover of a septic tank is a pretty simple procedure.

Because most septic tank lids do not come with a lock, they may be opened at any time with the proper tools and materials.

You’ll Need:

  • Screwdriver, shovel, pry bar, metal detector (optional), broom, and other tools

Step 1: Locate the Septic Tank

In most areas, septic tanks must be located at least 10 feet away from the house’s foundation in order to function properly. It is possible to monitor their whereabouts by tracing the path of the drain as it leaves the residence. It’s possible that you’ll need to call your local health department instead if you can’t follow it down through the drainage system. If they’ve given permits for the system, it’s probable that they have a record of the location of the septic tank. If they don’t, get in touch with a reputable septic system company and inquire as to where it could be hidden or hidden from view.

It is possible to locate the approximate position of the septic tank using a metal detector if the tank is buried underground.

As a result, a metal detector will undoubtedly assist you in your hunt.

If it makes contact with something substantial, you’ve discovered your container.

Step 2: Dig Up the Lid

Septic tanks are often located beneath ground level. A covering of dirt or grass is frequently placed on top of them to prevent mishaps and odors from escaping because they require little care aside from the biannual or triennial pumping. Bring a shovel or other digging instrument with you to assist you in excavating the earth once you’ve discovered the tank. The lid should be perfectly flat on the tank, with the exception of a little seam around the edge. Prevent dirt from dropping and sliding down onto the lid by digging out at least 16 inches of earth on all sides and around the top of it.

Most tanks feature two or three lids, depending on their size.

Step 3: Remove the Lid

Due to the fact that septic tank lids are often built of concrete or steel, they are extremely tough to force apart and remove. The handles on some tank lids are built in, whilst others need the use of a pry bar to raise them open completely. If the lid has handles, enlist the help of a friend or family member to assist you in removing the lid from the container. If it doesn’t, put a screwdriver into the seam surrounding the lid and the pry bar into the space created by the screwdriver. Then press the button all the way down.

  1. Use caution when doing so to avoid damaging the lid.
  2. Keep in mind that septic tanks with concrete lids weigh significantly more than those with steel covers.
  3. In such instances, it is preferable to employ a contractor to remove the lid on your behalf in order to avoid injuring the lid itself.
  4. That’s all there is to it!
  5. When the pumping or repairs are finished, replace the cover on the hole in the right manner.
  6. Then you can either cover the lid with dirt or plant grass on top of it to finish it off.

The position of the tank should also be marked with a sign or a beautiful stepping stone to make it easier to find afterwards. You will avoid having to deal with the trouble of moving the tank’s cover in the future if you do this.

Septic Tank Lid Safety and Precautions

Approximately 80% of all septic tank accidents are the result of improperly shut lids. Unfortunately, not everyone who accidently falls in is able to walk away without injury. Prevent a catastrophe from occurring by taking some of the following precautions:

  • Check the condition of the tank’s lids on a regular basis. Bolts, screws, and other locks should be used to secure the lids to prevent unauthorized entry. It is never safe to leave an open lid alone, even while it is being pumped or fixed. After working on the septic system, always double-check that the tank lids are properly closed and secure. Educate young children on the importance of not opening or playing with septic tank covers. Understand the exact location of the septic tank lids on your property
  • Vehicles and heavy gear should never be driven or parked on top of septic systems, since this may cause the lid to become dislodged or damaged. Stay away from the septic tank’s entry since the gases might knock you out. If you’re near a septic tank, don’t burn a cigarette or do anything else that may cause a fire. Septic tanks emit methane gas, which is very flammable and explosive. Whenever you are excavating outside, keep an eye out for hidden mechanical or electrical wires. No matter how precious something may appear to be, it is never safe to remove anything from a tank. Instead, you should hire an expert to collect it on your behalf. If someone falls into the tank, do not go in after them unless you are equipped to do so safely and effectively. Please dial 911 as soon as possible, and make sure the individual does not drown by placing a floating device in the tank.

Final Thoughts

We hope this tutorial was useful in assisting you with the procedure of lifting the lid of your septic tank! Allow us to conclude this piece with a final word of caution: until absolutely essential, leave the maintenance of your septic system to the experts. Open the lid only when you need to monitor the level of the tank’s liquids or gases. Wishing you the best of luck!

How to Open a Septic Tank Lid

Find the location of the septic tank. The tank must be at least 10 feet away from the house foundation, according to most building rules. The location and direction of the drain as it exits the house should offer a good indication of the tank’s location and direction. For the purpose of locating the tank, it may be required to drill a number of test holes.

Step 2

Remove the dirt off the top of the tank using a shovel. The lid of the septic tank will be a square piece of concrete that will be installed at the center of the tank’s interior. Depending on the kind of tank you have, it will be around 18 inches square at the most. Remove the dirt from the lid’s edges as much as possible, and try to slant the sides of the hole to assist prevent dirt from moving and sliding down the sides of the hole. After you have removed all of the loose dirt, whisk away any leftover dirt.

Step 3

Make a small indentation with the screwdriver in the seam surrounding the lid. As soon as the seam begins to open slightly, insert one edge of the pry-bar into it and pry it upwards. Because the lid may be fairly heavy, you should have a companion nearby to assist you in removing it from the hole. Keep an eye out for any cracks or chips in the tank’s borders or the lid itself when doing this procedure. It is critical to have a tight, smooth seal between the lid and the tank when using this method.

Tip

In order to avoid accidentally back-filling the hole when the repairs are finished, make a note on it. It is best to indicate the placement of the tank lid with a tiny stepping stone that is flush with the surface of the ground. If you need to re-open the tank in the future, you will save time and effort by doing so now.

Warning

Never go into a septic tank or allow anybody else to get into one. Suffocation and death can occur quickly as a result of the gases and lack of oxygen.

Procedure for Opening Septic Tanks

  • ASK a question or make a comment about how to open a septic tank safely and properly for inspection or cleaning.
See also:  How Do We Find Septic Tank Vs Sewer? (Question)

InspectAPedia does not allow any form of conflict of interest. The sponsors, goods, and services described on this website are not affiliated with us in any way. Instructions on how to open the septic tank. The location of the septic tank cleanout or cover, as well as the access and opening processes. We discuss some of the things to look for before opening the septic tank, such as subsidence, indications of recent work, and septic tank coverings that are not suitable to use. Then we demonstrate how to remove the septic tank lid or the access port cover from the tank.

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Procedures for Safe Opening of a Septic Tank, Cesspool, or Drywall for Inspection or Cleaning

The following are the contents of the article:

  • How to remove the lid from a septic tank
  • When it comes to pumping out the septic tank, which septic tank entrance should be used? Why

In this septic tank pumpout article series, you’ll learn how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect conventional septic tanks, as well as how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect conventional septic tanks using photos. In addition to septic pumping tank truck operators, this guideline is meant to provide basic information to homeowners and septic service providers that are concerned about septic system maintenance.

  • There is a risk of dangerous, perhaps deadly collapse due to subsidence (depressions or low regions in the earth) near the location of the septic tank. Evidence of recent construction activity that may necessitate further investigation in order to determine the status of the septic system
  • Backup or effluent breakout at the surface of the ground in the septic tank region.
  • Here is an example of a septic tank cover that was discovered atop an unstable home-made collection of concrete blocks that had been piled by the owner to serve as an access well to his septic tank. Because the masonry blocks were misaligned and loose, and because the tank aperture into which the cover opened was bigger than the cover, there was a serious collapse risk that may have resulted in a deadly hazard. We covered the area with plywood and roped it off, and we quickly informed the residents and the property owner of the situation, both verbally and in writing

Procedure for Opening the Septic Tank Pumping Access Port

It is necessary to clean the septic tank using a cleanout port, which is normally positioned in the center of the tank. A small access opening, such as one over an intake or outlet baffle, does not provide enough space for adequate sludge removal from the septic tank bottom, and it increases the likelihood of future clogging of the tank’s inlet or outlet due to partially removed floating scum that has not been completely removed from the tank bottom. In this particular scenario, we already had the measurements to the exact placement of the septic tank cleanout cover due to previous work.

A wrecking bar is set to be used to remove the cover from the vehicle.

Reader CommentsQ A

@Ron, In order for a concrete septic tank lid to be correctly erected, it must feature both access openings and cast in iron loops to which a hoist may be attached. Alternatively, if your septic tank cover does not have those points of purchase for lifting, you will require a flat bar and a larger wrecking bar to pry up the excavated lid from the septic tank sufficiently to allow you to put a chain around the lid, most likely two Chainz, and lift the lid with a hoist and tripod mechanism or you will use an on-site motorized hoist.

  • 1/2 x 27/4 removing the top of a septic tank @Phil, Although what you describe is theoretically doable, it may be less expensive and more rational to do so in a different way.
  • This is due to the fact that just stitching a circular hole does not ensure that I am creating a hole through which the lid will not be dropped.
  • Edge My concrete septic tank, which was constructed when the home was built in 1979 and does not have any manholes or openings for pumping out, is in poor condition.
  • Is it feasible to cut two manholes using a concrete saw that are 20″/24″ in diameter and then build risers and a cover on top of them?
  • Could you please share a picture of the tank top?
  • It is common for the concrete top to be tapered; nevertheless, it may just be trapped by effloresent salts and filth.
  • I have a feeling that simply tugging will not be effective.

This would have stopped leaks but would have made it extremely difficult to open the tank for the next person who needed to open the tank.

Repeat this process many times all around the cover’s perimeter.

For me, this has worked almost every time in the past.

It is recommended that you build a septic tank riser that is sealed to the tank top, as well as a new secure cover on top of the riser if your septic tank lid is not near to the ground level.

Never work on your own.

I’ve erected two wood 4x4s on top of the lifting ring to provide additional support.

All I’ve done three times is shattered those 4x4s.

Do you have any recommendations?

A septic tank pumping provider can remove plastic bags, tiny pebbles, and other debris from your tank, as well as the sediments, scum, and sludge that has accumulated there.

What is the best way to get them out?

When the septic tank is drained out, would it make sense to place a plastic bag over the top hole of the tank to keep the odors contained?

Gerard A plastic bag as a sewer line cap doesn’t seem right to me – it’s not durable, it’s the incorrect material if a cover is required, and if it’s a vent rather than an access pipe, the vent must be open to the atmosphere and protected from animal intrusion.

What is the function of this item?

A typical septic tank is equipped with clean out access covers that are strategically placed.

Maybe something as basic as a flat piece of concrete or stone will be sufficient, or maybe something more complex.

To be quite honest, I would have expected the contractor who dug the hole to be accountable for ensuring that the system was repaired and safe.

What should I do to solve it?

What store would I go to in order to acquire septic tank covers?

A few years ago, I had a beautiful new house built for me.

I have three plastic polylok lids, one of which is above ground and is for the pump.

I’d like to purchase risers so that I may build all three at a depth of around 6 inches below ground level.

What are the advantages and disadvantages.

Do you have any other suggestions?

I apologize for the lengthy post.

Sorry, but “True Bolt” isn’t a phrase I’m familiar with or associate with septic tank lids in any way.

Although this is not always the case, Mary, as the pumper may be able to access the entire tank bottom from a single opening depending on the tank’s size and shape; however, if your pumper is unable to do so from a single opening, you may want both openings opened to inspect the condition of the tank baffles.

There are two holes in my septic tank. Is it necessary to open both doors for a pump out?

Question:cannot find the manhole cover of the septic tank

@Ron, In order for a concrete septic tank lid to be correctly erected, it must feature both access openings and cast in iron loops to which a hoist may be connected. Alternatively, if your septic tank cover does not have those points of purchase for lifting, you will require a flat bar and a larger wrecking bar to pry up the excavated lid from the septic tank sufficiently to allow you to put a chain around the lid (probably two Chainz), to lift the lid with a hoist and tripod mechanism, or you will use an on-site motorized hoist.

  1. Half-inch by 27-quarter-inch septic tank top pushing up @Phil, Although what you describe is theoretically conceivable, it may be less expensive and more reasonable to do it in a different way, as described above.
  2. This is due to the fact that just stitching a circular hole does not ensure that I am creating a hole through which the lid will not fall.
  3. Edge My concrete septic tank, which was placed when the home was built in 1979 and does not have any manholes or openings for pumping out, was not designed for this.
  4. What if I want to cut two manholes using a concrete saw that are 20″/24″ in diameter and then construct risers with a lid on top of them?
  5. Please provide a photo of the tank top.
  6. Are there any specific details?
  7. The lid should be forced up using a chain hoist or a strip of horizontal timber held on one end by a post and the other by a hydraulic jack.

If someone was trying to seal the tank lid against ground water leaking when it was last installed, it’s likely that they oozed some silicone or butyl sealant over the lid edges, which would stop leaks but make it a nightmare for the next person who has to open the tank.

Repeat this process many times all around the cover.

In my experience, this method has worked nearly every time.

It is recommended that you build a septic tank riser that is sealed to the tank top, as well as a new secure cover on top of the riser, if your septic tank lid is not near to ground level.

Working alone is never a good idea.

Over the top of the lifting ring, I’ve built up two oak 4x4s.

Nothing more than breaking those 4x4s three times.

Do you have any advice?

In addition to plastic bags and tiny rocks, septic tank pumping companies may also remove the particles scum and sludge that have built up in your tank over time.

the best way to get them out of my system Gerard A plastic bag as a sewer line cap doesn’t seem right to me – it’s not durable, it’s the incorrect material if a cap is required, and if it’s a vent rather than an access pipe, the vent should be open to the atmosphere and protected from animal ingress.

  1. Is this a good idea?
  2. Gerard A plastic bag as a sewer line cap doesn’t seem right to me – it’s not durable, it’s the incorrect material if a cap is required, and if it’s a vent rather than an access pipe, the vent should be open to the atmosphere and protected from animal ingress.
  3. Is this a good idea?
  4. John, What you’re saying strikes me as a bit weird.
  5. As a result, I’m completely baffled as to what sort of tank you’re running.
  6. Attention: We don’t want surface water seeping into the tank, and we don’t want an unsafe cover that may cause harm or death if someone were to fall into the tank.
  7. They cut a hole in the tank in order to pump out the contents.

Maree, The most convenient option is to locate a local septic tank provider near where you live rather than searching online.

Tom, What you’re proposing is totally acceptable in my opinion.

It was good when I had my tanks cleaned last week; the only problem was that he had to dig approximately 12 inches below ground for the lids.

I have two more in the basement.

All three of these structures will be around 6 inches below ground level, thus I would like to obtain risers for them.

What are the benefits and drawbacks of each option?

Do you have any additional ideas?

Your assistance has been greatly appreciated!

Although this is not always the case, Mary, as the pumper may be able to access the entire tank bottom from a single opening depending on the tank’s size and shape; however, if your pumper is unable to do so from a single opening, you may want both openings open to inspect the condition of the tank baffles.

It is possible to access my septic tank from two directions. For a pump out, do both valves have to be opened?

Reply:

If it’s a cesspool, rather than a septic tank, and it’s spherical, the access lid is normally located in the center of the container.

Question: how do i remove septic tank lid that is stuck

The entrance lid would normally be in the center of the cesspool, if it is in fact a cesspool rather than a septic tank, and it is spherical.

Reply:

Anon:WARNING: If the septic tank cover, lid, or access aperture has partially caved in or sank into the tank, the condition is extremely dangerous – an unsecure cover implies that someone might fall into the tank, which is generally lethal very quickly. Please keep everyone away from the septic tank area until such time as you have had the tank inspected and opened for additional inspection by a professional. Depending on the tank type and condition, lifting the lid may necessitate the use of a pry bar or wrecking bar, as well as a small portable winch (which is unusual).

Alternatively, consider the following:

Septic Pumping ProcedurePumper Truck Operation Articles

  • PROCEDURE FOR SEPTIC TANK INSPECTION
  • MISTAKES MADE IN SEPTIC TANK PUMPING
  • PROCEDURE FOR SEPTIC TANK PUMPING
  • HOW TO CLEAN A SEPTIC TANK
  • WHEN TO CLEAN A SEPTIC TANK
  • WHEN NOT TO PUMP A SEPTIC TANK
  • HOW TO FIND A SEPTIC TANK
  • HOW TO OPEN A SEPTIC TANK
  • INSPECT THE SEPTIC TANK BEFORE PUMPING
  • SEPTIC TANK INSPECTION PROCEDURE
  • SEPTIC TANK LEVELS OF SEWAGE
  • PUMPER TRU

Suggested citation for this web page

HOW TO OPEN A SEPTIC TANK at Inspect a Tank An online encyclopedia of building environmental inspection, testing, diagnosis, repair, and issue preventive information is available at Apedia.com. Alternatively, have a look at this.

INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES:ARTICLE INDEX to SEPTIC SYSTEMS

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See also:  How To Know When 300 Gallon Septic Tank Is Full? (TOP 5 Tips)

Technical ReviewersReferences

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How do you remove a lid from a concrete septic tank?

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  1. Debris should be removed from the damaged region of the concrete lid. Using a wire brush, rough up the surface of the region
  2. In a wheelbarrow, mix enough concrete to completely fix the lid in a single batch
  3. Using a broad trowel, apply concrete mix to the damaged region of the tank lid.

Also, do septic tanks have concrete lids, as you may be aware? The majority of concrete septic tanks are constructed with thick concrete lids over the manholes and access holes, which are subsequently filled with soil. While this is a satisfactory installation, many septic specialists recommend that the concrete lids be replaced with plastic risers and lids to provide for easier access to the tank for examining and cleaning. To put it another way, how do you open a septic tank lid? TheLids Should Be Dug Up Typically, the lid and other septic tank components are placed between 4 inches and 4 feet underground in the majority of situations.

If you are unable to locate thelid by probing, shallow excavation along the tank’s edge with a shovel should disclose thelid.

Bolts, screws, or other types of locks can be used to fasten the lids and prevent unauthorized entry.

Using cars to drive or park directly on top of sewer lines can cause damage to the cover or dislodge it entirely. When examining or having your septic system pumped, never leave an open lid unattended while doing so.

Can’t remove septic tank lid

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Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:FrontRanger (CO)Hi, first post here. This issue may have come up before but I wasn’t able to find it using the Search feature.I’ve got a two-chamber concrete septic tank. The previous owners used to pump out the tank by removing only the lid on the inlet-side chamber. Now the concrete lid on the outlet-side chamber can’t be removed. The septic serviceman said that it hadn’t been removed in so long, the concrete had “re-set”. The way he explained it, irrigation and rain water soak through the soil, then get into the concrete, and over time form a bond. He also said that you can’t pump/clean/inspect the tank properly without removing that lid. Naturally, I called up the previous owner, but he had a different story. I wanted to get some impartial advice to find out who was right, so here goes:1. The previous owner didn’t think it was necessary to remove the outlet-side cover. He said the septic pumping company was able to put their hose in over the baffle and pump out the outlet-side chamber. I’m no expert but I don’t see how that’s possible, given the size and flexibility of the hose, and the extremely limited visibility with the hose in the hole. Is it possible to properly pump out the tank removing only the inlet-side lid? If so, how?2. If the answer to the first question is that you truly need to remove the outlet-side lid, what is the best way to solve the problem of the “re-set” concrete in the lid? The tank is located close to my house, beneath a lawn with sprinkler lines (both water and electrical) cleverly running right over the tank. Not the best choice on the part of the installer but naturally I want to minimize the excavation in that area.In case the options are specific to location, I’m located in Northern Colorado.Thanks!
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)what are you using to lift the lid? I have never had a problem even when the lid was set with mortar.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:FrontRanger (CO)The lid has what looks like a curved piece of re-bar set into it. The septic service guy was prying up on that with something, I didn’t see exactly what he was doing. Then he took a digging bar and started chipping away little pieces at the seam between the tank top and the lid, then tried prying up in that little space. After doing that unsuccessfully he said the concrete had “re-set”.
Post Reply
Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:mm (MD)Fasten a chain to the lid handle and then wrap and tie it off around a digging bar that is held horizontally 2-3 feet above the tank.Have someone (a helper?) apply upward leverage on the bar against the ground while you take a second digging bar and, using the hammer end, gently but firmly pound on the outer edge of the concrete lid.It will come up.The lids are often set in tar to seal them against water seepage into the tank so they are tight, but it will release.Edited 1 times.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:FrontRanger (CO)Thanks, m m. Now that you mention that, I remember the septic service guy talking about that briefly, and also a variation using a jack to apply the force. He said he thought since it had been so long since it was last removed, the re-bar would break out of the concrete before the lid came up. I know that the previous owner had not removed it since 1995. Don’t know about the owner before that, but he might not have taken it off since it was installed in 1978!There was no tar or tar paper visible in the chipped-away sections. some sort of barrier seems like an obvious step for anyone who installs these things for a living, but it looks like it was omitted in this case.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)I usually call a tow truck and use his hook in that rebar.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)A couple of log splitting wedges between the lid and the tank will also help.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:mm (MD)”A couple of log splitting wedges between the lid and the tank will also help”.About all they’ll help in doing is to obliterate the lid.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)The lid is about 8″ thick, it is not going to be “obliterated” unless it is completely deteriorated.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:FrontRanger (CO)Thanks for all the replies so far, about how to free up the stuck lid.Anyone for the first question? Is it possible to properly pump out the tank removing only the inlet-side lid? If so, how?Thank you.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:Paul48 (CT)Logically.Why would they put 2 access holes if one was enough?
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)It appears that there are NO access holes just two halves of the lid. The center baffle doesn’t comeup the bottom of the lid so they just stick the hose into the other side.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:FrontRanger (CO)Re: It appears that there are NO access holes just two halves of the lid. The center baffle doesn’t come up the bottom of the lid so they just stick the hose into the other side.-Perhaps I’ve been using the wrong terminology. What I meant by “lid” was a roughly 18″x18″ opening in the top of the tank, i.e., the covering for the access hole.Re: Why would they put 2 access holes if one was enough?-The same track that my mind took. The question arose from the claim of the previous owner that one was sufficient, and that the hose could be put over the baffle into the outlet-side chamber. My skepticism comes from imagining a stiff 4″ hose maneuvering down a hole, over the baffle, and then into the other chamber. Two access holes would certainly make it more convenient. My question is, can it be done properly using only the one on the inlet-side?Thanks again for your time.
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Re: Can’t remove septic tank lid
Author:hj (AZ)18 x 18 ports are NOT the same as two tank halves. It would be difficult to put the hose across, IF you have a center baffle. In this case there may not be one and everything can be done from a single port.
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Flip Your Lid

Get articles, news, and videos about Onsite Systems delivered directly to your email! Now is the time to sign up. Plus, there are Onsite Systems. Receive Notifications Pumper Discussion, an email-based forum for industry experts sponsored by COLE Publishing, is the subject of this feature in Pumper. It reports on interesting talks that take place in Pumper Discussion. Septic and drainfield installation and maintenance, trucks and equipment, portable sanitation, chemicals and additives are some of the topics covered in Pumper Discussion, as well as the sharing of knowledge and ideas.

The information and advice provided in Overheard Online is provided in good faith by industry professionals.

Question:

Receive articles, news, and videos about Onsite Systems delivered directly to your email! Make your registration right now. Plus, there are On-Site Systems available to customers. Receive Notifications. Pumper Discussion, an email-based forum for industry experts sponsored by COLE Publishing, is the subject of this feature in Pumper. It highlights significant discussions that take place in the forum. Septic and drainfield installation and maintenance, trucks and equipment, portable sanitation, chemicals and additives are some of the topics covered in Pumper Discussion, as well as other related topics.

To learn more about Pumper Discussion or to subscribe, please visit However, before implementing such advise to a specific company issue, readers should check with authorized industry authorities in full.

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Get the latest articles, news, and videos about Onsite Systems delivered directly to your email! Sign up right away. Plus, there are On-Site Systems. Get Notifications Pumper Discussion, an email-based forum for industry experts sponsored by COLE Publishing, is the subject of this feature in Pumper. It reports on important discussions that take place in Pumper Discussion. Septic and drainfield installation and maintenance, trucks and equipment, portable sanitation, chemicals and additives are some of the topics covered in Pumper Discussion.

The information and advice contained in Overheard Online is provided in good faith by industry professionals.

***

With regard to a concrete cover installed into a concrete tank, which I assume you are referring to on a regular basis, if you strike the middle of the cover with a heavy bar a few times, it will frequently come off and may be picked up. If you drive a backhoe over it without first breaking it loose, you will most likely simply do damage to the cover. It has been suggested that if you place a plastic garbage bag over the opening before reinstalling the cover, it would be simpler to remove the cover the following time.

That’s what we’ve always referred to them as. In my last post, I mentioned a full-size concrete cover that spans the whole width of the tank. Pop lids are normally equipped with a hook that allows them to be pulled out, but if not, they can be rather difficult to remove.

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What about the screw-on plastic lids that are made of plastic? Those might be a source of frustration at times. I normally remove them by spinning them off with a shovel. Getting back on the tank after it has collapsed is a nightmare, especially after it has been a nightmare getting off.

***

Yes, I was talking about lids that extend the whole length of the tank. They are often divided into three components. However, even at that, a 3-foot-by-5-foot slab of concrete weighs a substantial amount. I am able to raise these lids on my own, without the assistance of the homeowner or company. I was searching for a gadget, such as a tripod or something portable, rather than a specific item. Some of these lids are 3 feet or more below ground level, making it extremely difficult to get a pry bar under them and raise them.

***

In the past, I used to tip them up with a couple of shovels, then get my hands on it and use physical power to tip it up. Now, I normally dig up one end of the tank, but I dig enough more at the other end of the tank to allow me to slide it off the end of the tank. The tank should only have one compartment, else you’ll be digging up a large portion of its top and bottom.

***

On each vehicle, I have a tripod and a come-along with me in case the lids are recalcitrant. If the handle on the lid is broken, I generally have an old piece of strap (such as a trucker’s strap or a 2-inch ratchet strap) that I can use to tie the lid shut. The majority of the time, I leave the strap with the lid and replace it with something else. The tripods were manufactured by a local fabrication firm at my request.

Replacing Your Septic Tank Access Cover

The entrance cover for your septic system may appear to be an inconsequential element of the jigsaw, but it is critical to keeping your waste confined. Therefore, it is critical to understand when, why, and how you should replace your septic tank access cover in order to avoid costly repairs. Let’s take a deeper look at what’s going on.

When Should You Replace Your Septic Tank Access Cover?

Septic tank lids serve two functions: they prevent sewage from spilling into the tank and they prevent objects from falling into the tank. They are made of plastic or metal. Because the access cover for your septic tank is visible, it is critical that your septic tank lid be solid, durable, and correctly affixed to the tank, especially if your tank is on risers. Small animals and even children can become entangled if this is not prevented. As an added precautionary measure, leaks or breaks in the lid of your septic tank can cause an overflow of wastewater or sewage onto your yard, posing health dangers and creating an unsightly messe.

Additionally, bear in mind that your tank may be overflowing as a result of an overdue pumping session.

How to Replace Your Septic Tank Access Cover

So, how do you go about replacing a septic tank lid that has damaged or is leaking? Take the actions outlined below.

Locate your septic tank lid.

If your septic tank’s lid is on risers or if you have already had your septic tank pumped, this step is straightforward because you already know where your septic tank is located. When it comes to finding your septic tank if it is buried someplace in your yard and cannot be discovered, the task becomes a little more difficult to do. First, try contacting the folks who previously owned the land where you live. If you can’t get in touch with them, you might look for your property’s papers at the local health department.

You may either use a metal detector (and hope that the lid is made of metal!) or track the drain pipes that go away from your house if none of the other methods are successful.

Wait for the trail to come to an end, then probe about until you come upon the septic tank cover.

If all else fails, you might consider hiring a professional to assist you in locating your septic tank. Fortunately, you only have to go through this process once! Just make sure to indicate the location beforehand.

Determine what type of access cover you need for the replacement.

Always keep in mind that septic tank lids are available in a number of materials, which means that they vary in terms of both durability and cost. Despite the fact that concrete is reasonably inexpensive and surely durable, it is difficult to remove for routine maintenance and septic tank pumping. PVC or polyethylene covers, on the other hand, are more expensive, but they offer a greater degree of ease. Lids made of metal or fiberglass are also available. In addition to personal preferences, consider variables such as the placement of the septic tank, the amount of weight that will be placed on it, and so on.

Measure the current access cover.

Keep in mind that septic tank lids are available in a number of materials, which means that they vary in terms of both durability and cost effectiveness. However, while concrete is reasonably inexpensive and likely long-lasting, it is difficult to remove for routine maintenance and septic tank pumping. While PVC or polyethylene lids are more expensive, they offer a greater degree of convenience. on the other hand, Lids made of metal or fiberglass are also available as alternatives. In addition to personal preferences, consider variables such as the placement of the septic tank, the amount of weight that will be placed on it, and so on.

If the lid is not on risers, use a shovel to dig around it.

Remove the soil from the top of the septic tank and use a shovel to loosen the corners of the lid so that you can easily remove it. Remove the soil from the bottom of the septic tank.

Lift the old lid off the tank.

This phase might be simple or complex, depending on the sort of lid you’re working with. For a heavier lid, such as one constructed of concrete, you will almost certainly want the assistance of another pair of hands. If the lid is constructed of a lighter material with fasteners, carefully remove the bindings and pull it out of the way. Make sure that any children or pets are kept inside throughout the replacement procedure to avoid anyone falling in during the operation. Watch your own feet, as well.

Install the new one using the existing fasteners.

This phase might be simple or challenging, depending on the sort of lid you’re working with! Another pair of hands will very certainly be required for a heavier lid, such as one constructed of concrete. Carefully untie the connections holding the lid in place if it’s made of a lightweight material with fasteners. Make sure that any children or dogs are kept inside throughout the replacement operation to avoid anyone falling in during the replacement process. Additionally, keep an eye on your own footing.

Re-bury the lid, or ensure its security if it is on risers.

Once you’re finished, either set the soil back on top of the lid or tighten the cover to ensure it’s snug and secure.

How Can Norway Septic Help?

Once you’re finished, either set the soil back on top of the lid or tighten the lid down to ensure it’s snug and secure once again.

Common Septic Tank Facts

Once you’re finished, either lay the soil back on top of the lid or tighten it down so that it’s snug and secure.

How to Replace a Concrete Septic Lid

Septic systems employ a concrete cap to limit the infiltration of smells and sewage into the surrounding soil. Every five years, the lid must be removed in order for the septic system to be emptied out and the tank to be cleaned. When concrete septic tank covers become cracked or damaged in any way, they must be replaced immediately. Purchases of this nature can be made online or at a home improvement store in your area. Many septic tanks are equipped with risers, which allow the lid to be seen above ground.

Make arrangements with the utility companies to come out and mark the position of electricity and water lines before beginning work on a concrete septic lid replacement.

This stops people from cutting into utility wires, which might result in injury or other difficulties. How to Replace a Concrete Septic Lid (with Pictures) Image courtesy of creatingmore/E+/GettyImages.com

Dig Down to the Septic Lid

Spade or shovel the dirt around the concrete septic lid until you reach the septic tank lid, and then remove the septic tank lid. Septic tanks are typically located 12 to 14 inches below the surface of the earth. In order to have enough area to work when taking the septic tank top off the septic tank, it is preferable if you dig a perimeter around it that is 16 inches wide. It’s also a good idea to dig 2 inches past the seam where the lid and tank come together. If your lid is mounted on a riser, there is no need to poke around underneath.

Lift Off the Lid

A pry bar should be inserted between the top of the septic tank and the lid. Instruct your assistant to grip the handle on the top of the lid. One end of the concrete septic tank lid may be lifted up by pressing down on the pry bar. Instruct your assistant to pull the lid handle and slide the lid to the side while you work. You may need to repeat the method for the opposite end of a big rectangular lid if the lid is rectangular in shape. With the assistance of your companions, lift the septic tank lid away from the tank.

Check the seal on the top of the septic tank for damage.

Measure the Lid

Using a tape measure, measure the length and breadth of the aperture to your septic tank chamber. Purchase a replacement sewer cover from Home Depot or another supplier depending on the measurements you’ve taken thus far. The old lid should be placed back on top of the septic tank, or the tank entrance should be covered with a tarp if it will be several days until your new lid comes.

Clean the Seal

Using a putty knife, scrape away any remaining old seal from the top of the septic tank if necessary. The majority of the seal will fall out in large chunks. With a wire brush, clean the top of the tank entrance to remove any remaining traces of the seal as well as any loose concrete.

Install the New Lid

Using a putty knife, scrape away any remaining old seal from the top of the septic tank if needed. Several large chunks of the seal will fall loose. Remove any remaining pieces of the seal and loose concrete from the tank opening’s top with a wire brush.

How to Find the Lid on a Septic System

All septic tanks eventually fill with sediments and must be pumped out on a regular basis in order to remain in excellent functioning order. If the tank’s lid is not on a riser at ground level and you are not the home’s original owner, you may be unable to determine where the lid is located. A typical septic tank is 4 inches to 4 feet underground, with all of its components, including the cover, buried between 4 inches and 4 feet underneath. This is true regardless of whether the septic tank is equipped with special risers that keep the lid flush with the surface of the ground.

Consult A Map

First, choose with the most straightforward choice. The installation of septic tanks at all locations is recorded in most counties’ permission records, which are kept on file for future reference. Typically, this will include a schematic indicating the placement of the tank on the land, as well as certain dimensions that will allow you to measure to the precise site of the tank.

If your tank was placed before your county made it a requirement to record the location of such tanks, you may find yourself with nothing to show for your efforts. When you acquire a house, a schematic of your septic system may also be included as part of the home inspection process.

Search For A Sign

Septic tanks are placed in such a way that they are as unnoticeable as possible on the land. After the grass has grown back after installation and some time has passed, it is possible that just a few visual indications will remain. Pay particular attention to the contours of your yard for any inexplicable high or low points that might suggest the presence of an underground storage tank.

Follow The Pipe

Installation of the septic tank takes place along the sewage line that runs from the house into the front yard. Locate the 4-inch sewage pipe at the point where it exits the home in the basement or crawl space, if it is there. Locate the same spot outside and make a note of it. Insert a thin metal probe into the earth, identify the 4-inch sewage line, and follow it across the yard, probing every 2 feet, until you reach the end of the property. Septic tanks are required to be at least 5 feet apart from the home in all states except Alaska.

Whenever the probe makes contact with flat concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene it indicates that the tank has been located.

Locate The Lid

The majority of septic tanks are rectangular in shape and measure around 5 feet by 8 feet. Investigate the tank’s circumference to determine its boundaries and outline the rectangle’s boundary using a pencil. A septic tank that was built before 1975 will have a single concrete lid that is 24 inches in diameter in the center of the rectangle. If the tank was built after 1975, it will have two covers made of fiberglass or polyethylene, centered at the ends of the rectangle and centered at the ends of the rectangle.

Call A Professional

Opening a septic tank is a job best left to the pros once the lid has been discovered. Concrete septic tank lids are extremely heavy, and many require the use of lifting tools to remove them completely. An open tank has the potential to release toxic gases. Anyone going around on the property who comes into contact with an exposed septic tank might be in risk. Because of the noxious vapors present in an open tank, falling into one can be lethal.

Mark The Spot

Septic tank lid opening is best left to the pros after you’ve discovered where it may be found. Several lifting tools are required to remove concrete septic tank lids, which are very heavy in some cases. An open tank may release toxic vapors into the atmosphere. Anyone roaming about on the property who comes into contact with an exposed septic tank might be seriously injured or perhaps killed. In addition to the noxious vapors, falling into an open tank can be lethal.

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