How Often Should I Pump Out My Aerobic Septic Tank? (Correct answer)

How Often Should My Aerobic System Be Pumped? There are many variables that affect how often your system needs to be pumped. This is determined by the usage of your system, and the number of people living in your home, we suggest that your system be pumped every three to five years.

  • There are a number of factors that go into determining how often you should pump a septic tank. But generally speaking, you should pump out the septic tank once every 3 to 5 years. However, like I mentioned, there are other factors that come into play.

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 often does a 1000 gallon holding tank need to be pumped?

The size of the tank is one determining element regarding how often it ought to be pumped. For a household of 4 with a 1,000-gallon tank, it’s advised that it be pumped every 2.6 years, but for a 1,500-gallon tank, the time can be extended to 4.2 years and up to 5 years for a 2,000-gallon tank.

How do you maintain an aerobic septic system?

Here are the dos:

  1. Regularly Inspect Your Septic System.
  2. Pump Out Whenever Necessary.
  3. Be Water-wise.
  4. Use Licensed, Certified Companies.
  5. Flush Solids Down the Drains.
  6. Pour Harsh Chemicals in Your Toilets.
  7. Park Cars or Trucks on Your Drainfield or Reserve Area.
  8. Add Septic Tank Additives.

Do you pump an aerobic septic system?

Compared to its counterparts, an aerobic septic system breaks down solid wastes faster. As a result, the waste does not accumulate to alarming levels. You will, therefore, not need to pump your septic tank system frequently.

How do I clean my septic tank naturally?

You can mix about a 1/4 cup of baking soda with 1/2 cup of vinegar and 2 tablespoons lemon to make your own natural cleaning agent. The baking soda will fizz up to help get the dirt and grime in your tub and drains. It’s a great cleaner and your septic system will thank you!

How do I check my septic tanks sludge level?

To measure the sludge layer:

  1. Slowly lower the tube into the septic tank until it touches the bottom of the tank.
  2. As the device is slowly pulled out of the water, the check valve closes capturing a liquid/solid profile of the septic tank water. The thickness of the sludge layer can be measured.

Can a septic tank never be pumped?

What Are the Consequences of Not Pumping Your Tank? If the tank is not pumped, the solids will build up in the tank and the holding capacity of the tank will be diminished. Eventually, the solids will reach the pipe that feeds into the drain field, causing a clog. Waste water backing up into the house.

How often do you pump out a holding tank?

How often does my holding tank need to be pumped? A holding tank may need to be pumped every 30 to 90 days depending on how much waste is generated and the size of the tank.

What to do after septic is pumped?

After you have had your septic tank pumped by a trusted septic company, there are some things you can and should do as the septic system owner.

  1. 1) Get on a Schedule.
  2. 2) Take Care of the System.
  3. 3) Know the Parts of Your System.
  4. 4) Check Other Possible Issues.

How long do septic air pumps last?

How long does a septic aerator usually last? Most septic air compressors will last about three years before a malfunction occurs. Fortunately, spare parts and rebuild kits are available for all of the major aerator brands. These kits can be far more cost effective than purchasing a new aerator.

Where do you put chlorine in an aerobic septic system?

Chlorine tablets are added via an access port on the top of your aerobic septic system tanks. Usually there are two access ports, one for the chlorine, and one for accessing the aereation chamber. Depending on the system manufacturer’s model, the ports will either be secured by screw-on caps or latched caps.

Should I use Ridex in my aerobic septic system?

Rid-X is full of helpful bacteria and enzymes that work to break down things like toilet paper and grease. These enzymes will not hurt your aerobic septic system. These enzymes will not hurt your aerobic septic system.

Which is better aerobic or anaerobic septic systems?

Anaerobic Bacteria. Aerobic bacterial colonies are generally regarded as better for on-site wastewater treatment. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, aerobic bacteria are less susceptible to household chemicals than anaerobic bacteria.

How much does it cost to pump an aerobic septic tank?

On average, it costs $410 to clean or pump a septic tank. Most homeowners spend between $287 and $545. It’s possible for extremely large tanks to run $1,000 or more. Most tanks need pumping every 3 to 5 years with inspections every 1 to 3 years.

How often do you put chlorine tablets in septic system?

21. How much chlorine am I supposed to add? The general rule is 1-2 tablets per person per week. This will vary for each household depending on the size of your family and amount of water usage.

How Often Should You Pump Your Septic Tank?

The most often asked question we receive is “How often should I pump my septic tank?” This is by far the most common question we receive. New homeowners who are unfamiliar with septic systems are frequently required to learn how to properly manage their septic systems in order to avoid costly difficulties in the future. As an alternative to sewer systems and as an ecologically beneficial approach to handle domestic drain waste, a septic system is distinct from a sewer system and requires extra attention and upkeep to function properly.

Septic tank pumping should be done at the right interval for your home

The fact is that, while there are some broad suggestions that a septic system should be pumped every 2-5 years, the truth is that you actually only need to pump your system as frequently as your system requires. The amount of sludge and scum present in a septic tank is the most important element in determining how often it should be flushed. When your septic system functions, it does so by taking use of the natural force of gravity to break out the household wastewater into three distinct components:

  • Solids (sludge) accumulate at the bottom of the tank
  • Grease (scum) accumulates at the top of the tank
  • And watery mix (effluent) accumulates in the center of the tank.

When the system is operating normally, the sludge and scum remain in the septic tank while the watery mix drains out into the drain field. The sludge and scum in the septic tank, on the other hand, must be removed from time to time in order to keep things running well. Sludge levels that reach dangerous levels, and/or a scum layer that has developed to a significant thickness, will be driven out into the drain field together with the watery effluent, resulting in a clogging of the drain field.

This can result in the growth of harmful germs in your house, as well as the need for a costly repair.

Most homeowners pumping more often than necessary are overspending!

Essentially, by pumping your septic tank too frequently, there is not enough sludge and scum buildup in the tank to ensure that you earn the optimum return on your investment in the costs of pumping your tank. Paying for the service more frequently than you need to is a waste of money that provides no additional benefits, just like paying for any other periodic maintenance. The fact is that your septic system does require a certain number of beneficial bacteria to function properly. Septic tanks employ anaerobic digestion, which is similar to the digestive system of humans, to naturally break down waste before it is sent on to the next phase of treatment.

Yeast is a type of bacterium that enters your tank each time an organic waste material is flushed down the toilet, and it breaks down the waste material into sludge and effluent.

It is really beneficial to leave your septic tank alone unless the quantities of sludge and scum in your tank exceed specified criteria; otherwise, it is detrimental. This ensures that the proper balance of bacteria is maintained in order to keep your system running properly.

So, how will you knowhow often you should pump your septic tank?

As you can see, the sludge and scum levels in your septic tank are the two most important criteria in determining your plan of maintenance. You should have your septic tank pumped when the sludge level reaches one foot at the bottom of the tank, or when the scum layer at the top of the tank has grown to almost six inches in thickness at the top. Contrary to common assumption, the majority of homes do not require yearly pumping. It is purely dependent on the level of your tank, and not on a fixed time frame.

How to Find Out if Your Septic Tank is Full

To begin, find and gently remove the septic tank lid from its mounting bracket. Use extra caution to ensure that the heavy lid does not crack or shatter, and never leave the tank open while you are not watching it! If a person or a pet falls into the tank, which has 4-5 feet of water beneath, it may be quite deadly. In the following stage, you will examine the scum trap at the very top of the tank to see how thick the scum layer is. You should pump your septic tank when the scum level has reached 6 inches thick, as a general rule of thumb.

  1. While it is possible to acquire a specialized sludge level measurement stick, it is also possible to create your own at yourself.
  2. The velcro end will be the one that will be inserted into the aquarium.
  3. Then, holding the measuring stick straight up, verify the velcro strip for accuracy.
  4. The septic tank should be pumped after it has accumulated one foot (12 inches) of sludge, as recommended by the manufacturer.

Grant’s Septic Techs, in contrast to many other septic service companies, will actually use photographic documentation to show you exactly where your waste levels are, as well as to assist you in tracking the amount of time it takes for your scum and sludge levels to build up to the appropriate levels.

  • If you do not require septic pumping services, there is no reason to pay for them.
  • For the low price of $127, we will come to your home and do all of the necessary measurements for you.
  • We’ll take actual images of your systems to document their current state and create a personalized proposal for your unique timetable.
  • In fact, if we discover that your septic tank levels require pumping at the time of inspection, we will not charge you for the measurement service.
  • In order to maintain the health of your septic system and get on the bestseptic tank pumping maintenance plan for your house, please contact Grant Septic Technologies at (508) 529-6255 or book a septic tank pumping appointment conveniently online.

Check to see whether your town is included in our Massachusetts service region by entering your address here.

8 Dos and Don’ts for Aerobic System Maintenance

Approximately 21 million homes employ aerobic systems to collect and filter trash from their domestic wastewater, rather than municipal sewers, to accomplish this. For your septic tanks to remain completely functional while avoiding costly repairs, it is possible that frequent inspections and preventative maintenance may be required. A brief guide to routine practices that you may do while utilizing an aerobic system in your house is provided below for your convenience. Here are the dos and don’ts:

1. Regularly Inspect Your Septic System

In spite of the fact that youraerobic system may be really effective, it may require regular maintenance and attention like as septic tank cleaning and emptying. Routine maintenance can assist to considerably extend the life of your septic system by preventing problems from occurring. Gravity systems, pressure distribution systems, and mound or sand filter systems may all require cleaning every three years, whereas pressure distribution systems may only require cleaning once a year.

2. Pump Out Whenever Necessary

While the septic firm is performing its examination, they may propose that you have your septic tank pumped. The frequency is determined by a variety of criteria, including the size of the tanks and the volume of water consumed by the home, among others. Residential septic systems typically need to be pumped every three to five years, depending on usage.

3. Be Water-wise

It is possible that you may need to regulate water use in your home. A common cause of failing aerobic systems is an excessive amount of water. Additionally, it causes your tank to fill up more quickly, necessitating more frequent pumping.

4. Use Licensed, Certified Companies

Your aerobic system should only be fixed or maintained by professionals who are qualified in their field. There’s a lot more to septic tank maintenance than simply putting chlorine pills to the tank. Investigate and confirm the qualifications of the maintenance staff that has been dispatched to our residence. Here are some dos and don’ts:

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1. Flush Solids Down the Drains

It is best not to flush anything down the toilet or down the sink drain. It is possible that solids and grease that flush down the septic pipes would require treatment and will add to the development of sludge. Your aerobic system is intended for the treatment of household wastewater.

2. Pour Harsh Chemicals in Your Toilets

It is chemically impossible to break down solids because the bacteria in your aerobic system are destroyed by the chemicals. The chemicals are extremely corrosive, and they will eat away at the inside of your drainage pipe. By calling your local public health hazard trash line, you may learn about the proper methods of disposing of the substances.

3. Park Cars or Trucks on Your Drainfield or Reserve Area

Heavy machinery lying on top of your septic tanks might compact the soils over the aerobic system, resulting in system failure and costly repairs. As an added bonus, you can keep your pipes from breaking as a result of the additional weight.

Aside from that, avoid putting your flower garden directly next to sewage tanks. Your septic tank may be overflowing and require emergency treatment, and you do not want to prevent the septic firm from defacing your flower beds while your property is bursting with trash.

4. Add Septic Tank Additives

Homeowners are always experimenting with new items for their septic tank service, some of which are not permitted by the local Department of health and sanitation. The goods might be dangerous, as they could introduce more solids into the system. Furthermore, the chemicals have the potential to damage ground and surface water. This includes the usage of chlorine pills for swimming pool chlorination as chlorinators. For the treatment of home wastewater, only calcium hypochlorite tablets have been allowed.

Never Compromise on Maintenance

Homeowners who make the conversion from a municipal sewer system to an aerobic system may find it difficult to adjust to their new lifestyle. The advice provided above can assist you in maintaining your sewage tanks and keeping them in good condition for many years. Red Dirt Septic can provide you with further information about septic tank servicing and maintenance.

Why Should My Aerobic System be Pumped?

When your maintenance provider recommends that you pump your aerobic septic system, you should do so as soon as possible. Delaying pumpings can have negative consequences for your system and result in increased costs in the long run.

High sludge levels indicate need for aerobic pumping

Sludge tests in the aerobic tank are performed as part of the normal maintenance of aerobic systems (some companies, including Van Delden, also check the sludge level in the pump tank). When the amount of sludge in the aerobic tank reaches a certain level (about 50-60 percent in the aerobic tank), we begin advising that the system be pumped out. If sludge is building in the pump tank — which might suggest a surge of water in the system — we may recommend that you get the pump tank pumped out immediately.

Routine aerobic pumping is critical

Failure to regularly pump the system will eventually have negative consequences for the system’s performance. In other situations, your maintenance provider may propose pumping; nevertheless, there are various reasons why your aerobic septic system should be pumped as part of routine maintenance:

  • Sludge build-up in the aerobic tank causes the proportion of treated wastewater to drop. It is possible for an excessive amount of solids to collect in the pump tank, resulting in premature pump failure. Solids can cause sludge to build up in the spray lines and spray heads, causing them to get clogged. It has also happened in severe circumstances when sludge was poured into the grass through the spray heads, posing an evident health threat.

Please keep in mind that if your alarm goes off, you should get your system checked by a professional. Pumping the system will almost never be sufficient to remedy the issue that has caused your alarm to go off. See our video for instructions on what to do when your aerobic alarm goes off.

How often should my aerobic system be pumped?

Pumping frequency can vary widely — ranging between one and five years on average — and is often determined by a combination of variables, including but not limited to:

  • The dimensions of the garbage tank, the aerobic tank, and the pump tank The number of people that live in a house
  • The items flushed down the toilets
  • The items flushed down the sewers Medications
  • Excessive reliance on domestic cleaning products
  • A hydraulic overload has been placed on the system.

Not all maintenance providers have aerobic pumping experience

Although any maintenance provider will be able to indicate when your aerobic system should be pumped, not all of them will be able to perform pumping services; you may need to hire a different business to remove the waste from your system. Make certain that any offer you receive for pumping your aerobic system includes pumping all three tanks or compartments; otherwise, the pumper may not be able to do the job properly. Check with the service provider to determine if there are any additional steps that need to be taken when the system is pumped in order to avoid damage to the system from occurring.

When the system is pumped, some system components may need to be disconnected or removed; make sure the pumping business is familiar with your manufactured system to avoid damage during the pumping process.

Call Van Delden for experienced aerobic system service

Van Delden Wastewater Systems specializes in the installation, maintenance, and pumping of only Clearstream aerobic systems, guaranteeing that our customers receive the greatest level of service possible. Do you require the pumping of an aerobic septic system in Clearstream? Give us a call at 210-698-2000 in San Antonio or 830.249-4000 in Boerne, or send an email to [email protected]. Over the course of 80 years, Van Delden Wastewater Systems has proven itself to be the premier Wastewater System provider, supplying San Antonio, Boerne, and the surrounding Texas Hill Country with services you can rely on today and in the future.

How to Care for Your Septic System

Septic system maintenance is neither difficult or expensive, and it does not have to be done frequently. The maintenance of a vehicle is comprised of four major components:

  • Inspect and pump your drainfield on a regular basis
  • Conserve water
  • Dispose of waste properly
  • And keep your drainfield in good condition.

Inspect and Pump Frequently

Inspection of the ordinary residential septic system should be performed by a septic service specialist at least once every three years. Household septic tanks are normally pumped every three to five years, depending on how often they are used. Alternative systems that use electrical float switches, pumps, or mechanical components should be examined more frequently, typically once a year, to ensure that they are in proper working order. Because alternative systems contain mechanical components, it is essential to have a service contract.

  • The size of the household
  • The total amount of wastewater produced
  • The amount of solids present in wastewater
  • The size of the septic tank

Service provider coming? Here is what you need to know.

When you contact a septic service provider, he or she will inspect your septic tank for leaks as well as the scum and sludge layers that have built up over time. Maintain detailed records of any maintenance work conducted on your septic system. Because of the T-shaped outlet on the side of your tank, sludge and scum will not be able to escape from the tank and travel to the drainfield region. A pumping is required when the bottom of the scum layer or the top of the sludge layer is within six inches of the bottom of the outlet, or if the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the bottom of the outlet.

In the service report for your system, the service provider should mention the completion of repairs as well as the condition of the tank.

An online septic finder from the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association (NOWRA) makes it simple to identify service specialists in your region.

Use Water Efficiently

In a normal single-family house, the average indoor water consumption is about 70 gallons per person, per day, on average. A single leaking or running toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons of water each day, depending on the situation. The septic system is responsible for disposing of all of the water that a residence sends down its pipes. The more water that is conserved in a household, the less water that enters the sewage system.

A septic system that is operated efficiently will operate more efficiently and will have a lower chance of failure. The Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program offers several simple strategies to conserve water as well as water-efficient goods.

  • Toilets with a high level of efficiency. The usage of toilets accounts for 25 to 30% of total home water use. Many older homes have toilets with reservoirs that hold 3.5 to 5 gallons of water, but contemporary, high-efficiency toilets consume 1.6 gallons or less of water for each flush. Changing out your old toilets for high-efficiency versions is a simple approach to lessen the amount of household water that gets into your septic system. Aerators for faucets and high-efficiency showerheads are also available. Reduce water use and the volume of water entering your septic system by using faucet aerators, high-efficiency showerheads, and shower flow restriction devices. Machines for washing clothes. Water and energy are wasted when little loads of laundry are washed on the large-load cycle of your washing machine. By selecting the appropriate load size, you may limit the amount of water wasted. If you are unable to specify a load size, only complete loads of washing should be performed. Washing machine use should be spread throughout the week if at all possible. Doing all of your household laundry in one day may appear to be a time-saving strategy
  • Nevertheless, it can cause damage to your septic system by denying your septic tank adequate time to handle waste and may even cause your drainfield to overflow. Machines that have earned theENERGY STARlabel consume 35 percent less energy and 50 percent less water than ordinary ones, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Other Energy Star appliances can save you a lot of money on your energy and water bills.

Properly Dispose of Waste

Everything that goes down your drains, whether it’s flushed down the toilet, ground up in the trash disposal, or poured down the sink, shower, or bath, ends up in your septic system, which is where it belongs. What you flush down the toilet has an impact on how effectively your septic system functions.

Toilets aren’t trash cans!

Your septic system is not a garbage disposal system. A simple rule of thumb is to never flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper down the toilet. Never flush a toilet:

  • Cooking grease or oil
  • Wipes that are not flushable, such as baby wipes or other wet wipes
  • Photographic solutions
  • Feminine hygiene items Condoms
  • Medical supplies such as dental floss and disposable diapers, cigarette butts and coffee grounds, cat litter and paper towels, pharmaceuticals, and household chemicals such as gasoline and oil, insecticides, antifreeze, and paint or paint thinners

Toilet Paper Needs to Be Flushed! Check out this video, which demonstrates why the only item you should flush down your toilet are toilet paper rolls.

Think at the sink!

Your septic system is made up of a collection of living organisms that digest and treat the waste generated by your household. Pouring pollutants down your drain can kill these organisms and cause damage to your septic system as well as other things. Whether you’re at the kitchen sink, the bathtub, or the utility sink, remember the following:

  • If you have a clogged drain, avoid using chemical drain openers. To prevent this from happening, use hot water or a drain snake
  • Never dump cooking oil or grease down the sink or toilet. It is never a good idea to flush oil-based paints, solvents, or huge quantities of harmful cleansers down the toilet. Even latex paint waste should be kept to a bare minimum. Disposal of rubbish should be avoided or limited to a minimum. Fats, grease, and particles will be considerably reduced in your septic tank, reducing the likelihood of your drainfield being clogged.

Own a recreational vehicle (RV), boat or mobile home?

If you have ever spent any time in an RV or boat, you are undoubtedly familiar with the issue of aromas emanating from sewage holding tanks.

  • The National Small Flows Clearinghouse’s Septic System Care hotline, which may be reached toll-free at 800-624-8301, has a factsheet on safe wastewater disposal for RV, boat, and mobile home owners and operators.

Maintain Your Drainfield

It is critical that you maintain the integrity of your drainfield, which is a component of your septic system that filters impurities from the liquid that emerges from your septic tank once it has been installed. Here are some things you should do to keep it in good condition:

  • Parking: Do not park or drive on your drainfield at any time. Plan your tree plantings so that their roots do not grow into your drainfield or septic system. An experienced septic service provider can recommend the appropriate distance for your septic tank and surrounding landscaping, based on your specific situation. Locating Your Drainfield: Keep any roof drains, sump pumps, and other rainfall drainage systems away from the drainfield area. Excess water causes the wastewater treatment process to slow down or halt completely.
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Frequently Asked Questions – On-Site Sewage Facilities (OSSF)

Having a Septic System or an Aerobic Treatment Unit is a unique experience. A septic tank should be emptied out at least once a year. Do cleaning chemicals have an impact on my health? What is the impact of a garbage disposal on my septic system? When there is a lot of rain, why does my system backup or struggle to function properly? When it rains, why do my spray heads continue to work indefinitely? Is it permissible to bring automobiles, decks, sheds, or livestock onto the soil treatment area?

Do antibiotics have an impact on the performance of the system?

What is the operation of septic systems and aerobic treatment units?

Living with a septic system or an Aerobic Treatment Unit

Even if you are not aware of it, if you have a septic system in your backyard, you are in fact the owner of a small-scale wastewater treatment facility. As the property owner, you are responsible for ensuring that the system is properly running in order to safeguard your health, the health of your neighbors, and the environment. A faulty wastewater treatment system can discharge nutrients and pathogens into the environment, causing water quality to deteriorate and posing a concern to public safety.

  1. The quantity of water, organic material, and chemicals that enter the waste stream is controlled by the building’s residents.
  2. The performance of your system might be significantly impaired if you exceed certain design quantities.
  3. Excessive water consumption or hydraulic loading might cause these quiet circumstances to be interrupted.
  4. Because the sediments are not permitted to settle, they will continue to move deeper down the system, potentially blocking pumps, spray heads, and drain fields.
  5. Due to the fact that these bacteria are naturally present, there is no need to flush additives, yeast, or any other stuff down the toilet.
  6. When it comes to staying alive and actively treating trash, the microorganisms in an aerobic treatment unit rely on a proper combination of food and oxygen.
  7. When there is more organic material in a system than the microbes can process and digest, the system is said to be organically overloaded.
  8. It is possible that a kitchen waste disposal will greatly increase the quantity of organic loading and that the pump out intervals will be reduced by one to two years.
  9. A healthy vegetative cover in the spray field will help to remove surplus water and nutrients from the soil while also allowing the final treatment processes to take place in the soil.

When you maintain your system, you will experience increased levels of enjoyment as well as enhanced performance and the protection of environmental health.

How often should a septic tank be pumped out?

Make sure your septic tank is cleaned as soon as possible before sludge or scum builds up at the bottom of the tank’s outflow device (about every 3 to 5 years). If an excessive amount of sludge collects, particles will be discharged from the tank along with the liquid, potentially clogging the soil. Wastewater will then seep out of the ground or back up into the home, through the plumbing systems. For further information on the suggested pumping frequency based on the size of your septic tank and the number of people living in your home, please see the chart below.

Pumping and transporting septic tank sludge is only permitted by those who are registered with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Do cleaning products affect my system?

Cleaning products have the potential to interfere with the treatment procedure. When selecting a cleaning product, it is important to first read the label:

  • It is dangerous if a chemical kills the bacteria
  • Thus, it should be used very infrequently or never. The warning indicates that restricted use should not have a significant impact on the system. Generally speaking, caution indicates that the product will have little impact on the system.

How does a garbage disposal impact my septic system?

Excessive usage of in-sink garbage grinders, as well as the disposal of excessive grease, are not recommended. Garbage grinders can cause sludge or scum to accumulate quickly, increasing the frequency with which the septic system must be cleaned and, in certain cases, causing the system to fail because the wastewater is too powerful for the system to handle.

My toilets do not flush during periods of heavy rain.My spray heads always spray when it rains.What can be done to correct this?

Water flowing off driveways, roofs, and other hard surfaces should be directed away from the soil treatment area of the final treatment and dispersion component’s final treatment and dispersal component. There is a set amount of water that needs to be managed in the soil treatment area. Rainwater might overflow into the system, leaving no capacity for wastewater to pass through. Create landscaping that will channel runoff water away from the soil treatment area. Water that collects on top of the components has the potential to leak into them.

A leak in the collection system might cause sewage to be flushed through the system and onto the yard, resulting in a costly repair.

  • If a depression has developed on the ground above the tanks, rainfall may have accumulated there and accumulated in the tanks. Rainwater invading the system might cause the treatment components to become overloaded. Examine the color and development of the grass in the area around the aquarium. It is possible that the tank or pipe has ruptured because of excessive growth and a deeper green tint compared to the other grass in the yard. It is important to check the condition of any risers in the tank and ensure that they are securely sealed to avoid infiltration. Evaluate the system’s performance during wet weather by performing the following tests: If there is an unexpected increase in the number of dosing cycles and/or if the spray distribution system is spraying during a rain shower, it is possible that rainwater is penetrating the system.

Are vehicles, decks, sheds or livestock allowed over the soil treatment area?

Building roadways, storage buildings, or other structures on top of pretreatment or final treatment and dispersion components is strictly prohibited. These solid surfaces obstruct access to the system for maintenance, inhibit the capacity of water to evaporate from the soil, and hinder air movement into the soil from entering the system. By keeping automobiles, heavy equipment, and animals away from the wastewater treatment area, you may help to reduce soil compaction. Infiltration into the soil adsorption field will be reduced if the soil is compacted.

What plants are appropriate for the soil treatment area?

Ensure that a grass cover is maintained over the final treatment and dispersion component. Plant warm-season grasses that require more water throughout the growing season and overseed with cool-season grasses during the winter months. Grasses drain a major percentage of the water from a system, therefore it is necessary to keep the grass cover healthy and abundant.

Trees, which may be planted around the perimeter of the system, can also help to drain water. Roots from trees grown too close to the soil treatment area, on the other hand, might clog the distribution pipelines.

Do antibiotics affect system performance?

Antibiotics and other medications prescribed by a doctor are highly harsh on the bacteria in the body. The amount of maintenance required grows when they are flushed into the wastewater system. Visit the website of the United States Food and Drug Administration for further information on how to properly dispose of unused pharmaceuticals.

What should not be flushed down the drain?

The toilet does not function as a garbage can. Cleaning tissues, wet wipes, cigarette butts, diapers, condoms, and other waste should not be disposed of in the bathroom toilet. These things do not decompose, and as a result, sediments accumulate more quickly, necessitating the use of a pump truck to remove them.

How to Clean and Maintain Aerobic Treatment Units

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 There are potentially two or three chambers in an ATU that may require cleaning at some point in its lifetime. A baffle may divide these compartments in some devices, while in others they may be integrated in a single tank. Never forget that each time a lid is opened or removed, it must be securely fastened back in place before being used again.

In addition to storing materials, pretreatment tanks are meant to provide minimal biological treatment.

Check the solids depth in the tank at six-month intervals for the first six months after startup to assess the quantity of solids collecting in the tank.

Aim for scum and sludge accumulations to be less than one-third the depth of the liquid level at any one time.

  • Remove all of the waste stuff from the garbage can. Examine the baffles. Verify the structural integrity and water tightness of the building
  • Refill with water to the level specified by the manufacturer

The second compartment is an aeration chamber, in which aerobic bacteria breakdown waste in the water by consuming oxygen. Aeration systems are classified into two categories: suspended growth and fixed film. The techniques for identifying whether these two types of ATUs need to be cleaned varies between the two types of ATUs. Note:Some systems need the removal of equipment prior to pumping in order to prevent damage (see the manufacturer’s instructions for further information). A settleability test is used in suspended growth systems to determine the amount of mixed liquor suspended solids (MLSS) present in the aeration chamber.

  1. Aeration system operation should be timed if the system has a timer to control the aeration system.
  2. Approximately 1 quart of material should be used for this experiment.
  3. Dividing and marking the container into 10 equal pieces using a waterproof marker is recommended; each mark should represent roughly 10% of the total container volume.
  4. The interface should be between the 20 percent and 60 percent marks, suggesting that it is in proper working order.
  5. After reaching 60-80% of the total sludge volume in the plant’s aeration compartment, it is necessary to pump the aeration compartment.
  6. Water should be added to the tank to ensure that it does not float away.
  7. The samples shown below were taken 30 minutes later.

The level of buildup at the bottom of the tank can be determined by using a sludge-measuring device, which is used to determine how close this layer is to the bottom of the media in these systems.

If tank cleaning is required, be sure to access the tank as recommended by the manufacturer.

Some ATUs could have a separate compartment after the aerobic portion to settle out dead bacteria and other suspended solids.

This tank should be opened and sludge measured to determine if the sludge return pump is working properly, and pumped if the sludge depth is more than one-third of the liquid depth.

Depending on the size of the ATU and the users’ habits, pumping may need to be performed on an annual basis, but frequency is highly dependent upon use.

Pumping aeration too frequently will have a negative impact on performance as when you remove all of the biomass it takes time for the system to recover and resume proper treatment.

About the author: Sara Heger, Ph.D., is a researcher and educator in the Onsite Sewage Treatment Program in the Water Resources Center at the University of Minnesota, where she also earned her degrees in agricultural and biosystems engineering and water resource science.

Heger is the President-Elect of the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association and she serves on the NSF International Committee on Wastewater Treatment Systems.

Ask Heger questions about septic system design, installation, maintenance and operation by sending an email [email protected].

Septic Solutions – Frequently Asked Questions

Collin County law requires that you retain a valid maintenance contract in existence at all times, and this is a requirement under that legislation. It is possible to be fined up to $500 per infraction for operating your aerobic septic system without a legal contract, with each day being considered a separate crime.

2. Is there a maintenance contract that will cover everthing?

Yes! We provide three different degrees of service. Our services vary from the most basic of minimal coverage to the most comprehensive of all-inclusive coverage.

3. What do you inspect on a maintenance visit?

Yes! Depending on your needs, we may provide three different degrees of assistance. Our services vary from the most basic of minimal coverage to the most comprehensive of all-inclusive protection.

4. How do I know if my septic inspection is being performed?

Your maintenance firm should be placing a label in your control box and leaving a door hanger to inform you that they have inspected your system and found nothing wrong. If all of these steps are taken, but you still have a suspicion that your inspection is not being handled properly, place a small rock on the lid of your septic tank that will have to be removed in order for a proper inspection to take place. This will provide you the assurance that you are receiving the service that you deserve.

5. Is my septic system supposed to run all the time?

On order to notify you that your system has been examined, your maintenance provider should place a sticker in your control box and leave you a door hanger. In the event that you have done all of the above but still believe that your inspection is not being handled properly, place a small rock on the lid of your septic tank that will have to be removed in order for a proper inspection to be accomplished. So that you may be confident in receiving the quality service you deserve.

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6 If my septic system runs continually, will I have a large electric bill?

In order to notify you that your system has been examined, your maintenance firm should sign a label in your control box and provide you a door hanger. If all of these steps are taken, but you still have a suspicion that your inspection is not being handled properly, place a small rock on the lid of your septic tank that will have to be removed in order to conduct a proper inspection. This will provide you the assurance that you are receiving the service you deserve.

7. Is my septic system supposed to be making a noise?

Your air pump will be making a constant buzzing noise throughout the day. In contrast, if you are hearing a loud, unpleasant buzzing noise, it is likely that your septic alarm is activated. Ensure that electricity is going to your septic system by checking your circuit breakers. If your breakers have not been tripped, call Septic Solutions right away to schedule an inspection.

8. Why does my aerobic system smell?

It is normal for your air pump to create an intermittent buzzing noise when running. You should call 911 if you are experiencing an unbearably loud and irritating buzzing noise. To ensure that electricity is going to your septic system, check your circuit breakers. Contact Septic Solutions right away if your breakers haven’t been tripped yet.

9. If I have an odor inside my home, ist that septic related?

Your air pump will produce a constant buzzing sound.

If, on the other hand, you are hearing a loud, unpleasant buzzing noise, your septic alarm is activated. In order to guarantee that electricity is going to your septic system, check your breakers first. If your breakers have not been tripped, call Septic Solutions right away to discuss your options.

10. What can I do if my neighbor’s septic system stinks?

It is possible to file an anonymous complaint with your local Health Department / Development Services if your neighbor has a stinking septic system and shows no sign of wanting to address the problem.

11. What do I do if an alarm and/or alarm light comes on?

Ensure that electricity is going to your septic system by checking your circuit breakers. If your breakers have not been tripped, call Septic Solutions right away to schedule an inspection.

12 Should my alarm and sprinklers activate continually during and/or after rain?

When it rains, the majority of septic systems absorb groundwater. If your water level rises as a result of this, your high-water alarm and spray heads will be activated. The majority of septic systems will self-correct after the rain has stopped falling. If this is not the case, contact Septic Solutions immediately.

13. How do I mute my alarm?

To mute the alarm, there should be a button clearly indicated on your control panel. Make sure to unmute your alert as soon as your septic problem has been resolved.

14. How often should I have to replace parts?

The cost of replacement parts varies based on the kind of system you have and how well your septic system is kept up and maintained. Some aerobic brands need the repair of parts on a yearly basis. Keeping ants and rodents away from your septic system will help to extend the life of the system’s components. If you find that replacing components is a burden or an inconvenience, you might consider signing up for our Gold Service Plan.

15. Why are the air pump and water pump so expensive?

The pumps are high-end, precision-machined components. They are made and intended to endure harsh external weather conditions for an extended period of time, ensuring a long service life.

16. What should I do if I’m purchasing a home with a septic system?

In the event of a house purchase that includes a septic system, it is highly suggested that you request that the system be cleaned and inspected before closing. Cleaning will help you get started on the right foot, and examining the septic system will guarantee that you know your septic system is in good working order when you move into your new home. You will have the option to request necessary repairs if the system is not up to code or is not working properly during the inspection period prior to closing on the residence.

17. Is the water safe?

If the chlorine is properly maintained and your system is operating properly, the water supply that is sprayed into your lawn is supposed to be safe for children and dogs to walk around on. Humans and pets should never drink from puddles of standing water.

18. Do I have to add chlorine?

If the chlorine is properly maintained and your system is operating properly, the water supply that is sprayed onto your lawn is supposed to be safe for children and dogs to walk through. The consumption of standing water by people or pets is strictly prohibited.

19. Where can I purchase chlorine?

Chlorine may be purchased in the plumbing department of Home Depot or Lowe’s. It is possible to purchase chlorine from Septic Solutions, either from their office or service van. When compared to the standard retail price offered by home improvement retailers, purchasing chlorine from Septic Solutions will save you roughly $10!

20. Where do I add chlorine?

You may get chlorine in the plumbing department at Home Depot or Lowe’s.

It is possible to purchase chlorine from Septic Solutions, either at their office or service van. When compared to the typical retail price offered by home improvement retailers, purchasing chlorine from Septic Solutions will save you roughly $10.

21. How much chlorine am I supposed to add?

The usual guideline is that 1-2 pills per person per week should be used in moderation. Depending on the size of your family and how much water you consume, this will be different for each individual home.

22. Do I have to use tablets or is there a different method?

There is an other technique of adding chlorine to your septic system, which is described below. If you have a Smart-Chlor bleach injection system installed, you can use standard home bleach if you have the required equipment.

23. Is there a difference between a dripper and a Smart-Chlor?

Yes, a dripper is often a home-made device that drips continuously, similar to an intravenous drip. Each time your water pump starts, a Smart-Chlor is inserted into your plumbing system and is intended to dose the water with chloride. This solution reduces the need for superfluous chlorine consumption and ensures that the chlorine in your septic system is correctly regulated.

24. How much maintenance is required from me with a Smart-Chlor?

The Smart-Chlor requires little to no maintenance at all! It has a capacity of up to 6 gallons of regular home bleach, according to the manufacturer. Every 2-3 months, pour a gallon or two into the tank and you’re done! Not to mention that it comes with a lifetime warranty!

25. Will my sludge level break down by itself?

No, the sludge that has accumulated at the bottom of your septic tanks must be cleaned by a professional septic cleaning service in order to be effective.

26. How do I know when my septic is ready to be cleaned out?

Septic system cleaning should be performed when the amount of sludge in your system climbs to more than 8 inches. Septic failure might occur if the cleansing process is left unattended for an extended period of time.

27.Do aerobic septic systems have to be cleaned out?

Every three to five years, all septic systems must be cleaned up.

28. Is there a difference between pumping and cleaning the septic?

Yes. Pumping is simply the process of removing water from your septic tanks as well as some of the floating solids. Water and compacted muck that has collected in the bottom of the tanks must be properly removed, and this is accomplished through the process of “cleaning.”

29. How should I prepare for holidays and/or large gatherings?

When you anticipate hosting a big number of guests, cleaning your septic system before to the event will help you prevent an embarrassing septic system breakdown during your gathering.

30.Are there certain things I can not put into the septic?

Most items are fine in moderation; however, things like significant volumes of chemicals, grease, and other such substances are not permitted. See Septic System Do’s and Don’ts for a more in-depth list of what should and should not be put into your septic system. Septic Solutions of Texas retains ownership of the copyright and reserves all rights.

Aerobic System Inspection and Maintenance LLC

Septic System FAQs Am I required to have a maintenance contract?Yes, it is a Brazos County law that you must keep up a valid maintenance contract at all times. If the County finds that you are not under contract, it could result in a court date and fines up to $500.What should I do if I’m buying a house with a septic system?When buying a home with a septic system you should request to have the system cleaned out and inspected. You want to start fresh in your new home by having the system cleaned out, and having an inspection done will ensure that the septic system is in good condition.

  • An aerobic system is designed for the size of the house and the number of people who live there.
  • To avoid any embarrassing situations, have your system checked and possibly cleaned out before the holidays.Should my septic system be making a noise?Your aerator will make a constant humming noise.
  • First you should check your breakers to make sure power is getting to your system.
  • If the alarm is on, there is something wrong that should be checked out.Is my Aerobic system supposed to run all the time?Yes, your aerobic septic system is intended to run constantly.
  • You must maintain a chlorine residual in your system at all times.
  • The only way that the wastewater can be treated is for chlorine to be in the system.
  • You can also purchase a 10 lb bucket from ASIM.
  • If you buy a larger bucket, the moisture will begin to break down the remaining tablets in the bucket and they will go bad before you can use the whole bucket.
  • DO NOT use Pool chlorine tablets.
  • If you are experiencing a sewage smell, that does not mean you need to add more chlorine to your system.
  • This can cause the water level to rise and trigger the high water alarm and sprayers.

If you still have a problem, call ASIM.Should my sprayers keep coming on during an ordinary day when there is no rain?If there is no rain water to raise the water level in your tanks, and your sprayers are going off frequently during the day, this is a sign of overloading or a plumbing problem.

Also, if your sprayers are going off frequently and you are not using water in the house, check for leaking faucets or leaky/running toilets.


A plumber is responsible for the area under the house, we are responsible for the area from the cleanout to the system.How do I mute the alarm?There is a button marked on your control panel box to mute the alarm.

The alarm comes on for a reason and it should be addressed sooner than later.What can I do if my neighbor’s septic system stinks?If your neighbor has a smelly septic system and doesn’t appear to care or try to fix the problem, you can make an anonymous complaint to the Environmental Health Services division at the local Health Department.What to do if my electricity is out?

However, if you depend on a pump to move your treated water to another tank, disposal area, or if you have an aerobic septic system with surface spray disposal you should minimize water usage during the interruption in electrical service.

The best thing to do is minimize water usage.

advise caution when doing this, and remove the cap.

Taking the cap off will help relieve the possibility of a sewer backup in the house and let it go outside instead.

Your septic service provider should assist you if needed.How often will I need to have my tank pumped?Not very often.

If your installer is a licensed septic contractor in the area, he should know exact guidelines for your home, usage, and locality.Or you can check with your county health department.

Do not build any additions, pools, or driveways over a tank.Also, do not build or plant on top of your drainfield.If I think there is a problem, should I open my septic tank?NO!

Call a certified and trained septic professional if you detect any problems in your system.What are the major dos and dont’s of maintaining a trouble-free system?DO THIS .Conserve water to reduce the amount of wastewater that must be treated and disposed.

.Only discharge biodegradable wastes into your system.

.Divert down spouts and other surface water away from your drainfield.

.Have your septic tank pumped regularly and checked for leaks and cracks.

.Compost your garbage or put it in the trash.

.Dump solvents, oils, paints, thinners, disinfectants, pesticides, or poisons down the drain.

They can disrupt the treatment process and contaminate groundwater. .Dig in your drainfield or build anything over it. .Plant anything over your drainfield except grass. .Drive over your drainfield or compact the soil in any way.

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