The main difference between a septic system and a sewer system is, a septic system treats your wastewater on site. Usually, it’s placed underground on the land your house is built on. Sewer systems take the wastewater away from your home and route it underground to a treatment plant typically operated by the city.
- A septic tank collects sewage and wastewater from a source (your home or business establishment), treats it, and then leaches this treated wastewater into the ground through mounds or a field. A septic tank will have at least 2 chambers: one where liquid and solid wastes are separated, and a second which acts as a pumping chamber.
What does it mean when it says sewer septic?
Septic systems are underground wastewater treatment structures, commonly used in rural areas without centralized sewer systems. They use a combination of nature and proven technology to treat wastewater from household plumbing produced by bathrooms, kitchen drains, and laundry.
What is a utility sewer?
Sewer System: The facility removes contaminants and then discharges water back into local water supplies. Sewer System: The cost to use a public sewer system varies depending on location. Some areas separate the cost of water and sewage, while others combine the two.
Is sewer better than septic?
Although septic systems require a bit more maintenance and attention, they have a number of advantages over sewer lines. Since they don’t pump wastewater long distances to be processed at a water treatment facility, they use less energy overall and have a smaller environmental impact.
Is a septic tank good or bad?
No. Many homes with septic systems also have a private well. But, the septic system is entirely independent from the well. Its purpose is not to treat wastewater so it can become drinkable, but to safely disperse it in a way that prevents contamination.
Is septic same as sewer?
The main difference between a septic system and a sewer system is, a septic system treats your wastewater on site. Usually, it’s placed underground on the land your house is built on. Sewer systems take the wastewater away from your home and route it underground to a treatment plant typically operated by the city.
What are the signs that your septic tank is full?
Here are some of the most common warning signs that you have a full septic tank:
- Your Drains Are Taking Forever.
- Standing Water Over Your Septic Tank.
- Bad Smells Coming From Your Yard.
- You Hear Gurgling Water.
- You Have A Sewage Backup.
- How often should you empty your septic tank?
How long do septic tanks last?
A septic system’s lifespan should be anywhere from 15 to 40 years. How long the system lasts depends on a number of factors, including construction material, soil acidity, water table, maintenance practices, and several others.
What are the different types of septic tanks?
Septic Tank Types
- Concrete. Concrete septic tanks. These durable tanks will usually last for several decades.
- Steel. Steel septic tanks.
- Fiberglass. Fiberglass septic tanks.
- Plastic. Plastic septic tanks.
- Aerobic. Aerobic septic tanks.
What is the difference between a cesspool and a septic tank?
A septic tank allows wastewater to flow into a leach field where it undergoes a filtration process. In contrast, a cesspool is a pit lined with cement or stone which lacks the ability to filter the waste, eventually contaminating the surrounding soil.
Is septic tank necessary?
Getting rid of waste is a necessity, whether it’s done via sewer or septic tank. “A septic tank is a key component of a septic system, a small-scale sewage treatment system common in areas that lack connection to main sewage pipes provided by local governments or private corporations.
Is septic or sewer cheaper?
When it comes to the sewer vs. septic system debate, a lot of half-truths and outright inaccuracies persist in the minds of many homeowners. Sewers, on one hand, are generally viewed as the cheaper, easier option because there’s no maintenance involved.
What are the advantages of having a septic tank?
Advantages of septic systems
- Easier on the environment. Regular sewer lines can sometimes leak raw sewage into the ground, contaminating our ground water.
- Economical. Having a septic system can save you a lot of money.
- Lower maintenance.
- Long life expectancy.
- Tree roots.
- Water tables.
Can you sell a house with a septic tank?
If you currently have a septic tank that discharges to surface water then the sale will trigger the requirement to replace or upgrade the system. Buyers should satisfy themselves that any system is in good working order and does not cause pollution.
Why septic tanks are bad?
One of the biggest disadvantages of septic systems are the hassles that comes with sewage backup, which is generally a sign of clogging in the tank or drain field pipes. When backups occur, the problem is more serious than a simple household drain clog because the obstruction won’t be found just inches down the drain.
Do septic tanks smell?
A properly-maintained septic tank should be odor-free, so if you notice a bad smell inside your home or outside near the leach field, it’s a sign that there’s a problem. Septic odors are caused by gases in the system, including carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, and methane.
What is the Difference Between a Septic System and a Sewer System?
It’s possible that you’ve noticed that some neighborhoods are served by public utility sewer systems, while other neighborhoods are served by septic systems. If you’re looking for a new home, you may have noticed that some neighborhoods are served by public utility sewer systems and some neighborhoods are served by septic systems. Most cities and towns, as well as their immediate surrounding regions, will be served by sewer systems that are managed by the local public works department, unless otherwise specified.
Large public sewage systems require a monthly fee for their usage, but also provide the ease of not having to manage anything connected to waste water outside of the home to the homeowner.
Some septic systems, such as Low-Pressure Dose Systems, which employ a pump to transfer wastewater to a drain field, and traditional systems, which do not percolate effectively and must be pumped on a regular basis, can be more expensive to maintain.
Having a basic understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of each kind of waste water system will assist in deciding between communities that are served by public utility sewer systems and those that are served by septic systems.
- Septic System: The sewage is collected and stored in a holding tank.
- What is the procedure?
- Sewer System: The facility eliminates impurities from the water before re-releasing it into the local water supply system.
- Septic System: If you are purchasing a new home from a reputable new home builder, the cost of the septic system will be included in the purchase price of the house.
- Some places charge separately for water and sewage, while others charge the same amount for both.
- Septic System: Septic tanks need to be pumped out on an annual or every few years basis, depending on how often they are used.
- Who is responsible for the upkeep of the property?
- The public sewer system is maintained by your local municipality, which is your primary point of contact for information.
- Septic System: Get in touch with a reputable septic system repair firm.
- What are the advantages of doing so?
Plumbing System: Plumbing systems are extremely handy since the homeowner is not responsible for any maintenance. What is the Difference Between a Septic System and a Sewer System? appeared first on eHow. The post McKee Homes Blog appeared first on.
Septic vs Sewer: What’s The Difference Between Septic & Sewer
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Table of Contents
- Myths and Facts about a Sewer or Septic System
- The Differences Between a Septic and a Sewer System
- The Differences Between a Septic and a Sewer System
- The Alternatives: Septic System or Sewer System In the event that septic systems are not properly maintained
When toilets are flushed or hands are washed in buildings or residential premises, wastewater is diverted through drainage systems and out of the building. However, for all of the tasks that drainage makes possible, such as dishes, laundry, and showers, few people take the time to consider the mechanics that are involved in the process. Essentially, there are two sorts of systems: sewer and septic systems, which are both equally important. Sewer systems are more widespread than water systems since they are sponsored and maintained by municipalities.
The following essay explores the facts, benefits, and drawbacks of the entire septic vs sewer system issue from a scientific perspective.
Sewer or Septic System: Myths and Facts
If you ask many homeowners about the sewer system versus septic system issue, they will tell you that there are many half-truths and outright falsehoods in their thoughts. Sewers, on the other hand, are often seen as the more affordable and convenient alternative due to the fact that they require no maintenance. All you have to do is flush anything down the toilet or wash something down the drain and it will be gone forever. While septic systems are sometimes considered to be the more environmentally responsible alternative, many individuals are concerned about the expenditures and upkeep that will be required.
Is it true that the latter is more expensive and requires more regular maintenance?
Similarities Between Sewer and Septic Systems
Sewers and septic systems are similar in that they both provide the same advantages. Both systems filter out black water, which is the water that comes out of the toilet, and grey water, which is the water that comes out of sink and shower drains. Water treatment systems, such as those used for sanitation, filter bacteria and pathogens from water before it is released back into the environment. Essentially, the two methods provide reliable drainage of wastewater from homes and buildings with few difficulties the vast majority of the time, which is a significant advantage.
A sewage system is a network of pipes that links whole settlements to a single drain field.
Because sewage systems are paid for and maintained by local governments, people are relieved of the responsibility of doing maintenance and labor, but they are still responsible for paying the associated costs.
If a septic tank is pumped and maintained at the proper intervals, it should operate without a hitch for the duration of the projected time span.
A tank that fails to work properly is almost often the result of neglect on the part of the homeowner, and it is thus the homeowner’s obligation to summon a service crew and pay for the necessary repairs. Inquire With An Expert
How Do Septic Systems Work?
There are numerous similarities between the advantages provided by sewers and those provided by septic systems. Each system distinguishes between black water — the water that comes out of your toilet — and gray water — the water that comes out of your sink and shower drains. Water treatment systems, such as those used for sanitation, remove germs and pathogens from water before it is released back into the environment. Basic to any system is the fact that it provides reliable drainage of wastewater from homes and buildings with little to no issues for the vast majority of the time.
- Using a sewage system, whole cities may be connected to a single drainage field.
- This can cause sewage to back up and clog sinks, toilets, and bathtubs.
- Unlike public sewer systems, private septic systems are often the responsibility of individual households.
- A tank that fails to work is almost often the result of the homeowner’s irresponsibility, and it is thus the homeowner’s obligation to call in a service crew and pay for the necessary repairs.
Septic Tank vs Sewer Cost
While the high expenses of septic system repairs are frequently mentioned, what is less generally recognized is that municipal sewer systems may also be extremely expensive to maintain and operate. For starters, homeowners who have recently purchased a new sewage system may be subjected to exorbitant expenses for installation and upkeep. Numerous localities even levy fees for sewer improvement, which can amount to several thousand dollars per year in some cases. According to Bill Gassett, a realtor in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, the most recent Betterment charge in his community was $16,000.
Certain towns have even gone so far as to place liens on the property of homeowners who have failed to pay their fees.
Even if the pipes and pumps are already in place, there are still expenses associated with connecting a residence to a local system.
These fees can run into the thousands of dollars, on top of the maintenance and use fees, and are in addition to the costs of maintaining and using the system. Sewer fees vary from city to city, however the following are examples of particular localized prices per household:
- Boston, Mass., received $832
- Chandler, Ariz., received $612
- Danvers, Mass., received $680
- Lemoyne, Pa., received $651
Pumping your septic tank, on the other hand, is rather inexpensive and only has to be done every 3-5 years, costing between $200 and $300 on average per pumping. Some tanks can continue for a decade or more without pumpings if they are properly cared for and maintained. One additional problem that is taken into consideration when comparing prices is the business of sewage systems, which has become subject to an ever-growing number of intricate and expensive modifications in recent years. Septic systems, on the other hand, require just small adjustments to continue to function properly over an extended period of time.
Septic systems typically endure for the following periods of time, depending on the type of tank used:
- Steel tanks have a lifespan of 15-20 years, whereas concrete tanks have a lifespan of 40 years.
Septic drain fields normally last 20 years or more with good management, while some may live as long as 50 years or more with adequate care.
Benefits of Septic vs Sewer
Growing awareness of the environment’s demands among the general population has resulted in septic tanks being a more valuable selling factor for houses, particularly among younger purchasers. It is believed that the reason for this shift in view is that septic tanks are seen to be a more environmentally friendly option to traditional sewage lines. Energy and chemicals are required for the pumping and treatment of wastewater in sewage systems. As the germs from sewage flow outward, there has been some concern about the impact this might have on waterways in the area.
There are none of these issues with septic systems, which pump and treat water without the need of electricity or chemicals in the process.
There is no one place where treated outflows from big communities of houses and buildings are routed since such systems are uniformly scattered across the community.
When it comes to sanitation and water quality problems, septic systems are often the most cost-effective solution in many towns, particularly those with a small population density.
Septic vs Sewer System: The Biggest Differences Between the Two
The flexibility to install a septic system nearly anyplace with healthy soil is perhaps the most freeing part of having a septic system. In most cases, connecting a new residence to a sewage system in a distant place is both expensive and time-consuming. Because of the lack of adjacent sewage pipes, it is often even impossible in specific situations. Septic systems, in particular, are a feasible and cost-effective choice for people who find themselves in that circumstance. Aside from that, because septic systems are not subject to the same municipal requirements as sewage lines, you won’t have to worry about the price of pipes and pumping stations, as well as replacements and infrastructure upgrades.
Many homeowners continue to desire residences near sewage lines because of the marketability of such properties.
Because municipal governments are responsible for the maintenance of sewage lines, many people believe that such systems will be best handled in the hands of the most well-funded and skilled individuals.
In light of these distinctions, it is possible that a homeowner’s preference for one system over the other is influenced mostly by his or her desire to be self-sufficient.
However, if you desire independence as a homeowner and choose to live in a remote or custom-built property while taking sole responsibility for the operation of your wastewater system, a septic system would be the more appropriate choice.
The Choice: Septic or Sewer System
When it comes to existing properties, the option of installing a sewer system or a septic system is typically not even considered. For example, if you move into a community where all of the neighbors are fighting for a sewer line, you will very certainly have the option of opting in or continuing to use a septic tank as your primary waste disposal system. If you’re having a custom house constructed on a remote hill, in the middle of a dense forest, or in a sparsely populated rural area, a septic system will almost certainly be your only option.
After all, the desire to live in a distant, custom-built residence would be accompanied with the desire to be self-sufficient and responsible for the upkeep of a system of this nature.
When Septic Systems are Poorly Maintained
When it comes to septic systems, the majority of issues are caused by the neglect of property owners. When a tank’s outflow is not properly managed, it can have a negative impact on the quality of the lake’s water and be dangerous to the surrounding environment. In the case of wastewater, for example, inadequate treatment can cause pollution of other water sources and pose a hazard to human health. Septic system owners should consult the University of Minnesota Extension (UMNE) for guidance on how to “ensure effective treatment by having a qualified expert ensure that enough, unsaturated, and acceptable soil exists below the soil treatment area to allow for complete wastewater treatment.” The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has also discovered a correlation between tainted sewage and the emergence of hepatitis and dysentery bacteria in tap water.
- As an example, contaminants can contaminate drinking water and cause increased quantities of nitrate to be present, which can be harmful to persons who have weakened immune systems, as well as children and pregnant women.
- Furthermore, bugs and rodents that congregate in sewage-contaminated wetlands have the potential to transmit illnesses to humans, pets, and cattle, among other things.
- Cleaning and inspection of the system should be performed at least once every few years in order to avoid the sludge layer from becoming too thick.
- Allowing grease, hair, or hard particles to go down your sink or shower drains will help to keep your pipes from becoming clogged and causing damage.
- After all, the point of having a septic tank is to be able to enjoy good, clean, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly drainage throughout the duration of your tenure on a particular property.
- If your septic system is in need of repair or pumping, call Mr.
- The Greater Syracuse area’s plumbing repair, drain cleaning, maintenance, and installation of septic systems are all services that we provide.
Plumbing leak detection or any other plumbing-related project will be carried out by a professional plumber who has been certified by Onondaga County. Request an Estimate for the Job Previous PostNext Post Previous Post
What’s the Difference Between Septic and Sewer?
Whether you’re a first-time homeowner with no idea what you’re doing or a seasoned pro with plenty of knowledge, learning about your septic system may elicit emotions ranging from revulsion to fascination in you. Nevertheless, as is well-known, septic systems have been in use for hundreds of years in every part of the world. This Might Also Be of Interest to You: Keep Septic Tank Plumbing Costs to a Minimum Using These Tips They are a tried-and-true method of dealing with wastewater that is also efficient, versatile, and ecologically benign.
Septic Vs. Sewer
In contrast to a sewer system, a septic system cleanses your wastewater on-site, whereas a sewer system transports it away. Typically, it is buried beneath the property on which your home is being constructed. Sewer systems transport wastewater away from your property and through the ground to a treatment plant that is normally owned by the city or municipality. Sewer systems are typically provided by towns, and they are not always accessible in areas where new residences are being constructed for a variety of reasons.
They perform identically in that they purify wastewater while keeping toxins from entering groundwater.
Groundwater contamination results in contaminated drinking water.
How Does a City Sewer Connection Work?
Clean water entering the fixtures and unclean wastewater exiting the fixtures are separated by the plumbing system in your home. Each and every one of your home’s drains is connected to connect to a single large pipe that transports wastewater underground. If you have a sewage system, this main drain pipe links to a much larger pipe that is part of a larger network that transports waste. This system of sewage pipes transports waste water straight to a water treatment facility. Wastewater is cleaned and impurities are eliminated in this facility, allowing the water to be reused and made drinkable once more.
How Does a Septic System Work?
The entire wastewater treatment process takes place at the residence when using a private septic system. Septic systems, in general, function by separating and decomposing the contents of your wastewater. Your wastewater, or to be more precise, everyone’s wastewater, contains solids, liquids, bacteria, and other elements that, unless properly treated, can pose a biohazard to human health. In addition, these contaminants must be kept separate from groundwater sources. Isn’t it true that polluted groundwater equals polluted drinking water?
Following that, the system will separate and break down the materials into more natural elements, aided by some biology and natural science at the ready.
Finally, the cleaned and environmentally friendly water will be returned to the land on the property. All while safeguarding our critically important groundwater.
What Are the Main Parts of a Septic System?
All private septic systems will be comprised of four major components that will come in a variety of designs and sizes:
1. Main Drain Pipe
Homes with a septic system are similar to those with a sewer system in that they have a main drain pipe underneath to which all of the drains in the house are linked. The only thing this pipe does is transport your wastewater to where it needs to be. The pipe that runs from the house to the system is the initial section of the system.
2. Septic Tank
The septic tank is the next step. Septic tanks are available in a wide variety of sizes, styles, and designs. Your local service specialists are the greatest source for finding the tank that will provide the most value for your money. Tanks are always buried underground and may be identified by a manhole cover and a couple of risers at the ground’s surface level. Your septic tank is responsible for keeping wastewater away from groundwater. It is completely waterproof and can retain wastewater for an extended period of time, allowing the separation process to begin.
They are, in descending order, as follows: The scum layer is made up of oils, fats, and other things that float on the surface of the water.
Microbes, bacteria, and other things that are not heavy enough to sink are frequently found in this solution.
In most cases, when you hear about a septic tank being pumped, the technician is eliminating all three levels, however the emphasis is on removing the sludge and scum layers especially in this instance.
How Big Is a Septic Tank?
The size of the object varies, yet it is important. Tanks are available in sizes ranging from 750 to 1250 gallons. As a general rule, the capacity of your septic system and tank are decided by the number of people who will be living in the building. Tank capacity is calculated by professionals based on the maximum amount of water that can be stored in the tank. Because of the collection and separation process that takes place in the septic tank, it is evident that a tank that is too small would be a hassle to maintain and will require more regular maintenance.
How Deep Is a Septic Tank?
Your tank’s depth is dictated in most cases by the municipal ordinance that governs the area in which your house is built. Tank depth must take into consideration the kind of soil in your area, the level of groundwater, as well as the ability to reach the manhole or service ports for maintenance and inspection. It is normal to be many feet underground.
What Is a Leach Field?
A leach field is simply another term for a drain field. The third component of your septic system is the septic tank. Every time some wastewater enters the tank, a roughly equal quantity of wastewater exits the tank through another pipe that leads to a network of underground perforated pipes, or soakers, that collect and treat the wastewater.
The term comes from the fact that this network of pipes is located beneath the surface of the field. This field’s goal is to disseminate the treated water so that it can be treated by the soil once it has been distributed.
How Does the Soil Work?
This is the fourth and last component of the wastewater treatment process. Your soil provides the treated water with oxygen as well as bacteria that can digest or contain toxins before the water is filtered down into the groundwater system. As a result, the soil in and under your leach field serves as a highly effective water filter.
What About Septic Tank Pumping?
This is the fourth and last phase in the process of wastewater treatment. Your soil provides the treated water with oxygen as well as bacteria that can digest or contain toxins before the water is filtered down into the groundwater supply. As a result, the soil in and under your leach field serves as a very effective water filter for the surrounding area.
Your Septic System Must Be Pumped Out
All septic tanks require pumping out at some point in order to remove the scum and sludge layers and restore the tank’s full capacity to the environment. With a little biology knowledge under our belts, we’ve discovered how to make the septic system run more efficiently and allow us to go longer times between pump outs. This entails the introduction of beneficial microorganisms or bacteria into the tank. It’s possible that you’ve heard of anaerobic and aerobic septic systems. And the reality is that all systems make use of both, because your septic tank contains both aerobic and anaerobic conditions.
What’s in The Septic Tank?
First and foremost, let us deal with the most dangerous substance in the tank: solid, human excrement. Exactly this is what the septic system is supposed to contain at the bottom of the tank: human waste. To put it another way, it creates muck. The sludge is found in the bottom of the pond, beneath the wastewater and scum. Furthermore, if the sludge layer accumulates, or accumulates at an excessive rate, it takes up valuable tank capacity, leaving less space for wastewater. In this case, the septic system will be overloaded, which will result in severe leaks, clogging, and flooding of your home’s sewer system with raw sewage.
The sludge layer is located at the bottom of the lake, beneath the surface of the water, where there is no oxygen.
The microorganisms in your sludge layer consume and break down the typical components found in the layer.
Additionally, the sludge layer in your tank is maintained at an acceptable level to ensure that the system continues to operate efficiently for a longer period of time.
How Often Should I Have My Septic System Pumped?
The answer is that it is dependent. Your response will be influenced by a variety of criteria, including system capacity, system design, age, volume of usage, and other considerations. If your system was correctly established and designed with sufficient capacity for your needs, most septic service specialists recommend having your system pumped and inspected once every three to five years, depending on how often your system is used.
Consider consulting with a local specialist for assistance if your system is in need of further care, or if you are noticing and smelling symptoms that something is not quite right with it. Overall, these four factors will have an impact on how often you need to pump your septic tank.
- The number of individuals that live in the residence
- The amount of wastewater that is produced
- The amount of solids present in the wastewater
- And The size of the septic tank
You may be purchasing a home that already has a septic system built, in which case you will have no option in the size of the septic tank. Because of this, it is in “As-Built” condition. As a result, the top three factors may be the areas in which you have the greatest ability to control the frequency with which your system is pumped. Pumping is not a terrible thing in and of itself. Pumping is performed on all septic systems. In the same way, don’t treat your septic system like a garbage disposal.
Septic System Care
Proper care and maintenance of your heating and cooling system, as well as other systems in your house, may help you avoid costly problems in the future. The cost of replacing individual components or complete systems may reach into the thousands of dollars, and the headache is well worth it to avoid. Here are some fundamental best practices that you may implement on your own to save money in the long term while also providing you with piece of mind. Here are some suggestions for things you can do to better care for your septic system.
Keep this document on hand for each time your system is serviced.
In addition, get your system examined and pumped on a regular basis by a qualified specialist at all times.
You may require the following tools for your DIY project:
- Fasteners on the service ports can be tightened using a screwdriver or a tool. Long lengths of PVC or wood for use with dipsticks are required. Marking with a pencil
- Removal of screen filters is made easier with a pole equipped with a hook device. Cleaning screen filters using a low-pressure water hose is recommended. Flashlight
Measure the depth of the septic tank’s layers. DIY or hire a professional to perform it on a regular basis and maintain a record of it. This will assist you in determining how frequently your tank may require pumping. You should pump your tank if the bottom of the scum layer is within 6 inches of the bottom of the outlet tee or the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the bottom of the outlet tee, as indicated by the following measurements:
What Should I Keep Out of My Septic System?
- Products such as disposable diapers, cat litter, coffee grounds, household cleansers and chemicals, petroleum goods, solvents, paints, automobile products, pesticides, kitchen scraps, tobacco products, latex products, cotton swabs, etc. There are too many high-water-use appliances
- Tree and plant roots
- And anything that might block the drain.
Septic Systems Work Best With:
- High-efficiency water appliances
- Grassed leach fields
- Hot tubs that drain to a different location
- Use of cleaning products or baking soda on a limited basis
What Problems Do I Look for?
Clogs and leaks are the most prevalent problems associated with the operation of a septic system. When they occur downstream, the outcome will be reported either in the house plumbing through clogged drains or in the field around the system tank and leach field, depending on where the problem occurs. If you notice ponding water or muck near your septic system, call your local authorities. There will almost certainly be an odor as well. Pay close attention to what happens to your drains and toilets when a high-volume device such as a dishwasher or clothes washer empties.
Back-ups in the drains that occur when these appliances are utilized are an indication that something is amiss. Flooded or muddy leach fields with a foul odor are signs that the system is backed up, congested, or at maximum capacity, respectively.
If You Are Buying a Home With a Septic System in Place
As a last resort, request from the purchaser the permits and inspection approvals from the city demonstrating that the installation was inspected and up to code during the time period in question Any and all documentation for repairs, servicing, pumping, and other maintenance, even if the maintenance was performed by the owner, should be gathered and made accessible to the purchaser. It is recommended that you have a professional examination performed by an experienced septic specialist prior to closing on the home.
- It gives you confidence and facts that you can utilize to make an educated decision.
- When determining whether or not to purchase a property, it is possible that future septic system upgrades may need to be addressed.
- Plumbers who are certified by the state will examine the plumbing in the residence.
- Inspections of septic systems are carried out by septic technicians who are licensed in their respective states.
- Planning ahead with a sewer septic line plan from HomeServeis a fantastic approach to be prepared for future maintenance and repair expenditures.
- If you have a plan in place and a covered issue develops, you can simply phone the repair hotline, which is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
How Your Septic System Works
Underground wastewater treatment facilities, known as septic systems, are often employed in rural regions where there are no centralized sewage lines. They clean wastewater from residential plumbing, such as that produced by bathrooms, kitchen drains, and laundry, by combining natural processes with well-established technology. A conventional septic system is comprised of two components: a septic tank and a drainfield, often known as a soil absorption field. It is the septic tank’s job to decompose organic matter and to remove floatable stuff (such as oils and grease) and solids from wastewater.
Alternate treatment systems rely on pumps or gravity to assist septic tank effluent in trickling through a variety of media such as sand, organic matter (e.g., peat and sawdust), constructed wetlands, or other media to remove or neutralize pollutants such as pathogens that cause disease, nitrogen, phosphorus, and other contaminants.
Prior to discharging wastewater into the environment, several alternative systems are designed to evaporate or disinfect the effluent.
Specifically, this is how a typical conventional septic system works:
- All of the water that leaves your home drains down a single main drainage pipe and into a septic tank. An underground, water-tight container, often composed of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene, serves as a septic system’s holding tank. Its function is to retain wastewater for a long enough period of time to allow particles to sink to the bottom and form sludge, while oil and grease float to the surface and produce scum. Sludge and scum are prevented from exiting the tank and moving into the drainfield region by compartments and a T-shaped outlet. After that, the liquid wastewater (effluent) exits the tank and flows into the drainfield. The drainfield is a shallow, covered hole dug in unsaturated soil that serves as a drainage system. Porous surfaces are used to release pretreated wastewater because they allow the wastewater to pass through the soil and into the groundwater. In the process of percolating through the soil, wastewater is accepted, treated, and dispersed by the soil, finally discharging into groundwater. Finally, if the drainfield becomes overburdened with too much liquid, it can flood, causing sewage to flow to the ground surface or resulting in toilet backups and sink backups. Finally, wastewater percolates into the soil, where it is naturally removed of harmful coliform bacteria, viruses, and nutrients. Coliform bacteria are a kind of bacteria that may be found in the intestines of humans and other warm-blooded animals, with humans being the most common host. As a result of human fecal contamination, it is a sign of this.
The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority has built an animated, interactive model of how a residential septic system works, which you can view here.
Do you have a septic system?
Check out the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority’s animated, interactive model of how a residential septic system operates to learn more.
- You make use of well water. In your home, the water pipe that brings water into the house does not have a meter. In the case of a water bill or a property tax bill, you will see “$0.00 Sewer Amount Charged.” It is possible that your neighbors have a septic system
How to find your septic system
You can locate your septic system once you have confirmed that you have one by following these steps:
- Taking a look at the “as constructed” drawing of your house
- Making a visual inspection of your yard for lids and manhole covers
- Getting in touch with a septic system service provider for assistance in locating it
Failure symptoms: Mind the signs!
A bad odor is not necessarily the first indicator of a septic system that is failing to work properly. Any of the following signs should prompt you to seek expert assistance:
- Water backing up into the drains of homes and businesses
- It is especially noticeable in dry weather that the drainfield grass is bright green and spongy. The presence of standing water or muddy soil near your septic system or in your basement
- A strong stench emanating from the area surrounding the septic tank and drainfield
Buying A House With A Septic Tank: Pros And Cons
Do you want to buy a house, but it has a septic tank, and you’re not sure what to check for when you go looking? Several considerations should be made while looking at a house that has an underground septic system. Here’s what you should do to make sure your septic system is in working order before purchasing a home. Learn about the laws in your area. Septic systems are custom-designed to compliment your property and meet local building codes. These local ordinances may include requirements for septic tank inspection, maintenance, and replacement, among other things.
- If you decide to expand your home and add plumbing, they may also need you to install a larger septic tank to accommodate the additional waste.
- Septic systems must be inspected and maintained on a regular basis in order to avoid complications.
- Their job will be to search for leaks and blockages, identifying possible problems before they become major ones.
- It is recommended that you ask to examine the tank’s inspection history before purchasing a house with a septic tank.
- You must have a general understanding of the septic tank’s technical parameters.
- Additionally, you must be aware of the date it was installed, because septic tanks may need to be updated every 20-40 years.
- Make Preparations for Routine Maintenance A septic tank must be examined, maintained, and emptied on a regular basis in order to avoid problems.
Depending on the size of the tank, this can cost anywhere from $300 to $600 on average.
The distinction is that if you flush something down the toilet that shouldn’t be there, it becomes your responsibility on a septic system.
Pipes that are clogged can leak and sewage can back up into your home as a result of these obstructions.
Understand what may go wrong.
It is possible to create a large amount of mess when there are leaks, broken and clogged pipes, and flooding in a drain field.
Due to an excessive amount of liquid present either within the tank or within the drain field, a tank may fail to drain properly – or at all.
Spot Potential Problems As Soon As They Appear You must be able to recognize a possible problem before it manifests itself as a genuine one. Peculiar scents, unusual plumbing indicators, poor drainage, and backflow into your drains are all indications that your septic tank needs to be inspected.
Living with Well Water and Septic Tank
If you’re interested about what it’s like to live on a well and with a septic tank, here’s what you should know about the situation. Get quotations from as many as three professionals! Enter your zip code below to get matched with top-rated professionals in your area. We rely on water for almost everything we do in our daily lives, from drinking to brushing our teeth to cooking a meal to washing dishes. A critical consideration when purchasing a property in a more rural region is where your water utilities will come from.
It is possible that you may not have access to a municipal water and sewer connection, in which case you will be introduced to a well water and septic tank system for the first time.
How Does a Well and Septic Tank System Work?
It’s possible that you don’t pay much consideration to where your water comes from, but maintaining a well and a septic system would necessitate some expertise. In principle, the notion is straightforward; in practice, however, there are various components that homeowners should be aware of.
What Is a Well?
In its most basic definition, a well is a hole in the earth that offers access to water. A pump and pipe system is used to extract water from the ground, and a screen is utilized to filter out undesired particles in order to prevent blockages from forming. Because groundwater sources may be affected by germs and pollutants, wells that are improperly constructed can readily become contaminated. The foundation of any well is comprised of four essential components:
- A casing constructed of steel, polyvinyl chloride pipe, or concrete pipe Although it allows for free access in the ground, the casing also prevents any leaking into the well from the surrounding environment. Grout is used as a sealer to fill in any gaps or crevices around the outside of the well, so keeping pollutants from entering. Stainless steel or slotted PVC pipe filter screen keeps gravel, sand, and other waste out of the well
- Stainless steel or slotted PVC pipe filter screen It is necessary to pack gravel around the outside of the filter screen in order to prevent debris from entering the well or clogging the screen.
What Is a Septic System?
A septic system is a wastewater treatment system that comprises of a septic tank and a drain field that is located underground. Most of the time, these systems are located in rural locations where there is no access to centralized municipal sewers. Everything that goes into a home’s kitchen, faucets, and bathrooms goes out through a single main drainage pipe into a tank, which is buried in the earth and is completely watertight. The tank then contains all of the wastewater, gradually separating it into solids (which sink to the bottom) and oils (which rise to the surface) (which float to the top).
Once the liquid (known as effluent) is evacuated from the tank and spread into the drain field, which is a shallow, covered trench of unsaturated soil, the process is complete.
Well and Septic vs. City Water and Sewer
Adobe Stock – Africa Studio – stock.adobe.com While many homes rely on well water and a septic tank because municipal services are unavailable in their area, some homeowners prefer to use these systems on a purely voluntary basis.
If you have the option, both city water and well water have their own set of advantages and disadvantages that you should consider.
Pros of Well Water and Septic Systems
- Because you are using a private well, you will not be charged a monthly water cost. Well water is more nutrient-dense and contains more minerals and nutrients than tap water. Natural catastrophes generally do not pose a threat to well water since it is safe and uncontaminated.
Cons of Well Water and Septic Systems
- Water pollution from a septic tank, chemicals, or other contaminants is a concern. All upkeep and repairs are the responsibility of the property owner. A new septic system will cost anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000, making it an expensive investment.
Pros of City Water and Sewer Systems
- Water quality, service, and testing are all the responsibility of the city. Owner maintenance is kept to a bare minimum. Natural catastrophes generally do not pose a threat to well water since it is safe and uncontaminated.
Cons of City Water and Sewer Systems
- High homeowner costs for annual consumption
- The possibility of system malfunctions or maintenance being delayed
- Drinking water is not as pure as it once was and may include additional contaminants.
Have a System Inspection Before Buying a Home
It is common for typical house inspections to omit wells and septic systems, but it is critical that you have a full examination performed before proceeding with a purchase. If your regular house inspector does not have a specific septic inspection license, you will need to hire a qualified septic inspector to come out and check your system. It is likely that this will result in an additional charge, but the quality of the system will have long-term consequences for the health and safety of your family members.
Well Location Is Important
You can easily locate a well head by checking for a 6-inch capped pipe that will be poking out of the ground approximately a foot. This is the well head. Check to see that this pipe is at least 50 feet away from the corner of the house and at least 100 feet away from the septic drain field before installing it in your home.
Septic Systems and Drinking Water
It is critical to ensure that your septic system is in excellent functioning order in order to maintain your drinking water as clean as possible. Overflows can be caused by a variety of factors, including blocked pipes and drainage issues. A tank pumping is advised every three to four years, and you should keep an eye out for any warning signals, such as an odor in the yard or standing water near the drain field.
Avoid DIY Septic Systems
A well and septic system must be installed by a licensed and insured contractor at all times, without exception. Any well that has been excavated or bored by the homeowner poses an unacceptable level of contamination risk. Purchase a home where the system has not been properly installed and tested before making the purchase. Even though well water and septic tanks sometimes receive a bad name, the truth is that they are quite useful and offer a variety of advantages. If you’re unfamiliar with this sort of water system, do some research and speak with a local septic expert about what you should expect in terms of maintenance.
City Sewer vs Septic Waste Water Treatment, Advantages & Disadvantages.
For her hilarious book The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank, which was published in 1996, writer Erma Bombeck dissected suburban life and the subliminal, compulsive, and anxiety-producing competition that suburbanites experienced over houses, cars, and achievement, which she called “The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank.” “The grass is always greener on the other side,” as the saying goes, but what if we’re talking about septic tanks and whether or not being linked to a public sewage system is in any way preferable to not being connected?
Or is it the other way around?
Does being linked to a public sewer system appeal to those who live in rural regions because of its sleek efficiency and “out of sight, out of mind” convenience?
In this post, we’ll look at the pros and disadvantages of having a private septic system, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of being linked to the public sewage system. There just isn’t much of a choice when it comes to which system we live under in the majority of cases.
Pros and Cons of a City Sewer and Septic
Most rural communities, as well as some suburban areas, do not have access to a publicly funded sewage infrastructure. Digging trenches, laying pipe, and constructing and managing a sewage treatment plant, all of which are necessary components of a public sewer system, are expensive and, as a result, not cost efficient if the system will service only a few residences per mile of pipe built. Contrary to this, hundreds of families will be linked per mile of pipe in metropolitan areas, and the expenses of building and maintaining the system are paid by both the local government (via tax funds) and individual households (through sewer bills).
- Suppose a city person, who lives on a one-tenth-acre property, decides that he wants to experience the country life and installs an aseptic tank in his postage-stamp backyard.
- Unfortunately, this scenario would be prohibited by the construction rules in the area.
- As we will see, the grass is not always greener; rather, it is a different variety of grass.
- The important concern, of course, is the influence on the house and way of life that each type of system will have, taking into account factors like as cost, upkeep, and ease.
- Another point to consider is how living with each type of system gently effects our awareness of our environmental impact each time we wash dishes, take a shower, use the bathroom, or do the laundry, to name a few activities.
- When it comes to a septic system, the homeowner is solely responsible for the system’s installation, maintenance, and repairs.
- The expense of routine maintenance will cover the periodic pumping of the septic tank as well as the maintenance or repair of the tank or leaching area as necessary.
- Public sewage systems are the responsibility of a local utility, and the cost of operating and maintaining them is shared by the users through local property taxes and annual or quarterly fees levied by the municipality.
- Generally, homeowners should expect to pay anything from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars in annual costs, however sewer fees are typically coupled with public water bills and, in some circumstances, weekly garbage pickup bills as well.
Homeowners who elect to live on their own property rather than in a city or town will incur one-time as well as continuing expenditures for the installation and maintenance of an effective system for collecting, treating, and disposing of household wastewater on-site or at a remote treatment plant.
- Due to the nature of septic systems, the wastewater generated by a household remains on the property during the treatment process.
- A septic problem, such as an overworked leaching field or a leaching field that is oversaturated as a result of periods of heavy rain, has an impact on the home and surrounding environment.
- Additionally, it entails being cautious about the quantity of waste that is flushed down the toilet so that the system does not become overburdened.
- Furthermore, because it is developed and controlled by specialists whose job it is to ensure that everything functions well, the homeowner is relieved of the need to pay close attention to what, and how much, is flushed down the toilet.
- It’s easy to have a “out-of-sight, out of mind” approach regarding domestic wastewater when you have public sewage service, but problems do arise from time to time.
- Over the last few years, huge urban networks have been plagued by blocked pipes, which are similar to the difficulties we have as homeowners, but on a far greater scale.
- Obviously, repairs of this nature are costly, and the cost of these repairs will eventually be reflected in increases in sewage bills and taxes.
We’ll need a refresher course in the water cycle before we can get started.
In addition to evaporating from surface water (aquatic bodies such as seas, rivers, lakes, and streams), water is exhaled by all living things — consider woods transpiring water and herds of animals (including us!) exhaling wet air as examples.
Surface waters are immediately affected by precipitation that falls on them or that flows off the ground.
Groundwater is also a crucial source of water for drinking, irrigation, and other uses.
Water may also be stored for a long period of time, whether in groundwater or polar ice, ranging from a few months to hundreds of thousands of years.
Consider the aseptic system for a moment.
This implies that the water that leaves the home stays in the area, where it may be used to recharge the local groundwater supplies and, if applicable, neighboring surface water.
Public sewer systems are an integral feature of any developed urban or suburban landscape, and they are intended to remove wastewater from the local environment by collecting the sewage from hundreds to thousands of houses and businesses and transporting it to a central treatment facility for treatment.
This is how public sewage treatment finally eliminates water from a localized area of the environment.
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The temperature of treated effluent can be higher than the temperature of the water body into which it is released, changing the composition and variety of aquatic life in that body of water.
Numerous medications, for example, have been discovered in water basins downstream of wastewater treatment plants.
Moreover, because many household pesticides that wind up down the drain are not destroyed throughout the treatment process, they end up being delivered to surface water via treatment plant effluent, which is harmful to aquatic life.
Public Sewer or Private Septic?
When it comes to dealing with wastewater, it is difficult to determine whether private septic systems or public sewage treatment are the “best” options. The use of public sewage reduces the “footprint” of treatment for large numbers of families and businesses while also increasing engineering efficiency and bringing economies of scale to the process. Also collected and concentrated are vast quantities of wastewater, which includes the “typical” wastes that we’ve discussed extensively on this blog – human waste, food scraps and water from washing machines and showers – in addition to a wide range of chemical hazards, such as paint and solvent waste, pharmaceutical waste and pesticide waste, and a variety of industrial chemicals.
Of course, problems may arise with private septic systems as well, but the difference is that septic problems remain local (you can’t get any more local than your own backyard!) and are visible to the homeowner in a manner that individuals who rely on a public sewage system will not recognize.
Domestic water use and the creation of household garbage appear to be discouraged by being connected to a public sewer system, according to research.
In such a situation, it might be tempting to throw away our garbage without giving it much attention.
Where is the grass greener on the other side?
We recognize that living in a place where there is clean water available at the tap, as well as safe and accessible means to dispose of household garbage, is quite fantastic no matter where we live.
Sewer hookups are provided by GroundStone as part of our overall range of services.
If a city sewer system has been built near your home and you are considering connecting to it, we can assist you! Call us at 250-768-0056 or send an email to [email protected] to schedule an appointment now. In addition, the following form will attract our attention: