- How To Find Septic Tank Cleanout Consult a septic tank diagram or map. Determine the location where the drain leaves the house and its direction of travel.Dig to uncover the septic tank lid;Drain fields would be the a part of your septic system in which natural liquid squander drains from the septic tank and is.
Where is the cleanout on a concrete septic tank?
The septic tank should be cleaned from a cleanout port – usually located in the center of the tank.
Where is the lid on a concrete septic tank?
You can locate the lid of your septic tank by poking the ground every few feet with a metal probe. Lids can be buried up to a foot deep on average, so be sure to investigate any bumps that may indicate something is buried underneath.
What is the life expectancy of a concrete septic tank?
Inspectapedia estimates that a steel tank baffles will rust out in 15 to 20 years and may collapse if driven over, but a concrete tank will last 40 years or more as long as the wastewater is not acidic. It’s important to consider the life expectancy of a drain-field, too.
Are septic tank locations public record?
Contact your local health department for public records. These permits should come with a diagram of the location where the septic system is buried. Depending on the age of your septic system, you may be able to find information regarding the location of your septic system by making a public records request.
Will metal detector find septic tank?
If it’s Concrete or Steel, Use a Metal Detector. Based on your conclusions in Step 3, if your septic tank is likely made from concrete or steel, a metal detector can make the task of locating it much easier. But not just any metal detector will do.
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 do you tell if your septic tank is full?
How to tell your septic tank is full and needs emptying
- Pooling water.
- Slow drains.
- An overly healthy lawn.
- Sewer backup.
- Gurgling Pipes.
- Trouble Flushing.
How do you know when your septic tank needs to be pumped?
Your septic tank includes a T-shaped outlet which prevents sludge and scum from leaving the tank and traveling to the drainfield area. If the bottom of the scum 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 outlet, your tank needs to be pumped.
How do you tell if the leach field is clogged?
Stay vigilant for five signs your drainfield does not drain correctly anymore.
- Slowing Drainage. Homeowners first notice slower than usual drainage from all the sinks, tubs, and toilets in a home when they have a compromised drainfield.
- Rising Water.
- Increasing Plant Growth.
- Returning Flow.
- Developing Odors.
How do I know if my drain field is failing?
The following are a few common signs of leach field failure:
- Grass over leach field is greener than the rest of the yard.
- The surrounding area is wet, mushy, or even has standing water.
- Sewage odors around drains, tank, or leach field.
- Slow running drains or backed up plumbing.
Does heavy rain affect septic tank?
It is common to have a septic back up after or even during a heavy rain. Significant rainfall can quickly flood the ground around the soil absorption area (drainfield) leaving it saturated, making it impossible for water to flow out of your septic system.
How do I find my septic lateral lines?
Call your local electric utility provider or gas company to locate buried gas or utility lines before digging. A septic tank probe can also help you find the location. Stick the long, thin metal probe into the ground until you feel it hit the tank and feel the edges of the tank.
What is OWTS?
An Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (OWTS) is a privately owned and maintained sewage disposal system. They are commonly referred to as septic systems. All OWTS have two basic components: a two-compartment septic tank and a disposal field.
How do I get certified to install septic tank in GA?
- Review the certification requirements for individuals and companies.
- Study for the exam(s).
- Contact your County Environmental Health Office to schedule your exam.
- Complete the application(s) and bring them to your county.
- If starting a new company, pay your company certification fee.
How to Find the Lid on a Septic System
All septic tanks eventually fill with sediments and must be pumped out on a regular basis in order to remain in excellent functioning order. If the tank’s lid is not on a riser at ground level and you are not the home’s original owner, you may be unable to determine where the lid is located. A typical septic tank is 4 inches to 4 feet underground, with all of its components, including the cover, buried between 4 inches and 4 feet underneath. This is true regardless of whether the septic tank is equipped with special risers that keep the lid flush with the surface of the ground.
Consult A Map
First, choose with the most straightforward choice. The installation of septic tanks at all locations is recorded in most counties’ permission records, which are kept on file for future reference. Typically, this will include a schematic indicating the placement of the tank on the land, as well as certain dimensions that will allow you to measure to the precise site of the tank. If your tank was placed before your county made it a requirement to record the location of such tanks, you may find yourself with nothing to show for your efforts.
Search For A Sign
Initial consideration should be given to the most straightforward choice. The installation of septic tanks at all locations is documented in most counties’ permission records. Typically, this will include a schematic indicating the placement of the tank on the land, as well as certain dimensions that will allow you to measure to the precise site of the tank. If your tank was placed before your county made it a requirement to record the location of such tanks, you may find yourself with nothing to show for your effort.
Follow The Pipe
Installation of the septic tank takes place along the sewage line that runs from the house into the front yard. Locate the 4-inch sewage pipe at the point where it exits the home in the basement or crawl space, if it is there. Locate the same spot outside and make a note of it. Insert a thin metal probe into the earth, identify the 4-inch sewage line, and follow it across the yard, probing every 2 feet, until you reach the end of the property. Septic tanks are required to be at least 5 feet apart from the home in all states except Alaska.
Whenever the probe makes contact with flat concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene it indicates that the tank has been located.
Locate The Lid
The majority of septic tanks are rectangular in shape and measure around 5 feet by 8 feet. Investigate the tank’s circumference to determine its boundaries and outline the rectangle’s boundary using a pencil. A septic tank that was built before 1975 will have a single concrete lid that is 24 inches in diameter in the center of the rectangle. If the tank was built after 1975, it will have two covers made of fiberglass or polyethylene, centered at the ends of the rectangle and centered at the ends of the rectangle.
It should be possible to uncover the lid or lids by digging with a spade in specific spots, depending on when year the tank was constructed.
Call A Professional
Opening a septic tank is a job best left to the pros once the lid has been discovered. Concrete septic tank lids are extremely heavy, and many require the use of lifting tools to remove them completely. An open tank has the potential to release toxic gases. Anyone going around on the property who comes into contact with an exposed septic tank might be in risk. Because of the noxious vapors present in an open tank, falling into one can be lethal.
Mark The Spot
Make a note on the ground near where the tank was pumped by a professional and the lid was buried to serve as a reference in the future. In order to keep track of where you are, you should choose a hefty circular patio tile that is embedded in the ground. Additionally, draw your own map of the area and store it with your other important papers.
Procedure for Opening Septic Tanks
- ASK a question or make a comment about how to open a septic tank safely and properly for inspection or cleaning.
InspectAPedia does not allow any form of conflict of interest. The sponsors, goods, and services described on this website are not affiliated with us in any way. Instructions on how to open the septic tank. The location of the septic tank cleanout or cover, as well as the access and opening processes. We discuss some of the things to look for before opening the septic tank, such as subsidence, indications of recent work, and septic tank coverings that are not suitable to use. Then we demonstrate how to remove the septic tank lid or the access port cover from the tank.
For this topic, we also have anARTICLE INDEX available, or you may check the top or bottom of the page.
Procedures for Safe Opening of a Septic Tank, Cesspool, or Drywall for Inspection or Cleaning
The following are the contents of the article:
- How to remove the lid from a septic tank
- When it comes to pumping out the septic tank, which septic tank entrance should be used? Why
In this septic tank pumpout article series, you’ll learn how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect conventional septic tanks, as well as how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect conventional septic tanks using photos. In addition to septic pumping tank truck operators, this guideline is meant to provide basic information to homeowners and septic service providers that are concerned about septic system maintenance.
- In this septic tank pumpout article series, you’ll learn how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect conventional septic tanks, as well as how to locate, open, pump out, clean, and inspect standard septic tanks using photographs and illustrations. As a general guideline, this document is designed for septic pumping tank truck operators as well as homeowners and septic service firms that are concerned about septic system maintenance.
- Here is an example of a septic tank cover that was discovered atop an unstable home-made collection of concrete blocks that had been piled by the owner to serve as an access well to his septic tank. Because the masonry blocks were misaligned and loose, and because the tank aperture into which the cover opened was bigger than the cover, there was a serious collapse risk that may have resulted in a deadly hazard. We covered the area with plywood and roped it off, and we quickly informed the residents and the property owner of the situation, both verbally and in writing
Procedure for Opening the Septic Tank Pumping Access Port
It is necessary to clean the septic tank using a cleanout port, which is normally positioned in the center of the tank. A small access opening, such as one over an intake or outlet baffle, does not provide enough space for adequate sludge removal from the septic tank bottom, and it increases the likelihood of future clogging of the tank’s inlet or outlet due to partially removed floating scum that has not been completely removed from the tank bottom. In this particular scenario, we already had the measurements to the exact placement of the septic tank cleanout cover due to previous work.
A wrecking bar is set to be used to remove the cover from the vehicle. It is important to note that we excavated far enough away from the tank entrance so that when we remove the lid, we will not have a large amount of dirt falling into the septic tank.
Reader CommentsQ A
@Ron, In order for a concrete septic tank lid to be correctly erected, it must feature both access openings and cast in iron loops to which a hoist may be attached. Alternatively, if your septic tank cover does not have those points of purchase for lifting, you will require a flat bar and a larger wrecking bar to pry up the excavated lid from the septic tank sufficiently to allow you to put a chain around the lid, most likely two Chainz, and lift the lid with a hoist and tripod mechanism or you will use an on-site motorized hoist.
- 1/2 x 27/4 removing the top of a septic tank @Phil, Although what you describe is theoretically doable, it may be less expensive and more rational to do so in a different way.
- This is due to the fact that just stitching a circular hole does not ensure that I am creating a hole through which the lid will not be dropped.
- Edge My concrete septic tank, which was constructed when the home was built in 1979 and does not have any manholes or openings for pumping out, is in poor condition.
- Is it feasible to cut two manholes using a concrete saw that are 20″/24″ in diameter and then build risers and a cover on top of them?
- Could you please share a picture of the tank top?
- It is common for the concrete top to be tapered; nevertheless, it may just be trapped by effloresent salts and filth.
- I have a feeling that simply tugging will not be effective.
This would have stopped leaks but would have made it extremely difficult to open the tank for the next person who needed to open the tank.
Repeat this process many times all around the cover’s perimeter.
For me, this has worked almost every time in the past.
It is recommended that you build a septic tank riser that is sealed to the tank top, as well as a new secure cover on top of the riser if your septic tank lid is not near to the ground level.
Never work on your own.
I’ve erected two wood 4x4s on top of the lifting ring to provide additional support.
All I’ve done three times is shattered those 4x4s.
Do you have any recommendations?
A septic tank pumping provider can remove plastic bags, tiny pebbles, and other debris from your tank, as well as the sediments, scum, and sludge that has accumulated there.
What is the best way to get them out?
When the septic tank is drained out, would it make sense to place a plastic bag over the top hole of the tank to keep the odors contained?
Gerard A plastic bag as a sewer line cap doesn’t seem right to me – it’s not durable, it’s the incorrect material if a cover is required, and if it’s a vent rather than an access pipe, the vent must be open to the atmosphere and protected from animal intrusion.
What is the function of this item?
A typical septic tank is equipped with clean out access covers that are strategically placed.
Maybe something as basic as a flat piece of concrete or stone will be sufficient, or maybe something more complex.
To be quite honest, I would have expected the contractor who dug the hole to be accountable for ensuring that the system was repaired and safe.
What should I do to solve it?
What store would I go to in order to acquire septic tank covers?
A few years ago, I had a beautiful new house built for me.
I have three plastic polylok lids, one of which is above ground and is for the pump.
I’d like to purchase risers so that I may build all three at a depth of around 6 inches below ground level.
What are the advantages and disadvantages.
Do you have any other suggestions?
I apologize for the lengthy post.
Sorry, but “True Bolt” isn’t a phrase I’m familiar with or associate with septic tank lids in any way.
Although this is not always the case, Mary, as the pumper may be able to access the entire tank bottom from a single opening depending on the tank’s size and shape; however, if your pumper is unable to do so from a single opening, you may want both openings opened to inspect the condition of the tank baffles.
There are two holes in my septic tank. Is it necessary to open both doors for a pump out?
Question:cannot find the manhole cover of the septic tank
(8th of August, 2014) “We’ve located the cesspool concrete lid (about 12 foot diameter), but after digging a 2 foot perimeter, we were unable to locate the manhole cover, which was required for an inspection.” vicki levin stated Help? My husband is becoming increasingly upset with the digging!
If it’s a cesspool, rather than a septic tank, and it’s spherical, the access lid is normally located in the center of the container.
Question: how do i remove septic tank lid that is stuck
The entrance lid would normally be in the center of the cesspool, if it is in fact a cesspool rather than a septic tank, and it is spherical.
Anon:WARNING: If the septic tank cover, lid, or access aperture has partially caved in or sank into the tank, the condition is extremely dangerous – an unsecure cover implies that someone might fall into the tank, which is generally lethal very quickly. Please keep everyone away from the septic tank area until such time as you have had the tank inspected and opened for additional inspection by a professional. Depending on the tank type and condition, lifting the lid may necessitate the use of a pry bar or wrecking bar, as well as a small portable winch (which is unusual).
Alternatively, consider the following:
Septic Pumping ProcedurePumper Truck Operation Articles
- Warning: If the septic tank cover, lid, or access aperture has partially caved in or sank into the tank, the condition is extremely dangerous – an unsafe cover implies that someone might fall into the tank, which is generally lethal within minutes of falling in. Please keep everyone away from the septic tank area until such time as you have had the tank inspected and opened for additional inspection by a qualified professional. Depending on the tank construction and condition, lifting the lid may necessitate the use of a pry bar or wrecking bar, or even a small portable winch (which is uncommon). Continue reading atINSPECT the SEPTIC TANK BEFORE PUMPING, or choose a topic from the closely-related articles listed below, or see the completeARTICLE INDEX for a comprehensive list of resources. Alternatively, have a look at
- HOW TO CLEAN A SEPTIC TANK
- WHEN TO CLEAN A SEPTIC TANK
- WHEN NOT TO PUMP A SEPTIC TANK
- HOW TO FIND A SEPTIC TANK
- HOW TO OPEN A SEPTIC TANK
- INSPECT THE SEPTIC TANK BEFORE PUMPING
- SEPTIC TANK INSPECTION PROCEDURE
- SEPTIC TANK LEVELS OF SEWAGE
- PUMPER TRU
Suggested citation for this web page
HOW TO OPEN A SEPTIC TANK at Inspect a Tank An online encyclopedia of building environmental inspection, testing, diagnosis, repair, and issue preventive information is available at Apedia.com. Alternatively, have a look at this.
INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES:ARTICLE INDEX to SEPTIC SYSTEMS
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3 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SEPTIC TANK BAFFLES
By Admin on November 12, 2020 Your efforts to live as environmentally conscious as possible, as a responsible homeowner, are likely already underway, with practices such as recycling, composting, and purchasing energy-efficient equipment among your list of accomplishments. As a septic tank owner, you want to be sure that anything you put into your tank and septic field is causing the least amount of ground contamination as is reasonably practicable. Fortunately, there are a number of modest improvements you can do immediately to make your septic system even more ecologically friendly than it already is.
- Have your septic tank inspected and pumped on a regular basis.
- A bigger septic tank with only a couple of people living in your house, for example, will not require pumping as frequently as a smaller septic tank or as a septic tank that must manage the waste products of multiple family members will require.
- When in doubt about how often to pump your septic tank, consult with a professional for advice.
- In addition to locating and repairing any damage, a professional can ensure that the septic field is in good working order and that your septic tank is functional, large enough to handle your family’s waste, and not causing any unwanted pollution in nearby ground water.
- Avoid flushing non-biodegradable items down the toilet or down the toilet.
- Items that are not biodegradable are unable to properly decompose in the septic tank and might cause the system to get clogged.
- In addition to causing issues in your house, septic system backups can damage ground water in the area surrounding your septic field.
Towels made of paper Products for feminine hygiene Grease or fats are used in cooking.
grinds from a cup of coffee Even if you have a trash disposal, the food scraps that you flush down the drain and bring into your septic system may cause unanticipated harm to your plumbing system.
Food scraps can enhance the amounts of nitrogen and phosphorus in the wastewater, which can disturb the natural bacterial balance of the septic tank, among other things.
Water conservation should be practiced.
Exceedingly large amounts of water use will interfere with the normal flow of wastewater from your home into your septic tank.
Limiting the amount of time you spend in the shower and turning off the faucet while brushing your teeth, as well as purchasing a smaller dishwasher and washing machine that use less water, are all simple strategies to reduce water use in your home.
The following are some basic steps you can take to make your septic system more ecologically friendly: save water, maintain your septic system and tank, and recycle wastewater. To get answers to any of your septic tank-related issues, get in touch with the experts at Upstate Septic Tank, LLC.
How to Clean a Septic Tank
Article in PDF format Article in PDF format Getting your tank filled is something you should prepare for. You may rely on us to assist you with the cleaning procedure! Unless properly maintained, septic tanks can get clogged with solids that are incapable of being broken down by bacteria, which can result in a costly systemic collapse. In order to maintain your tank clean, it is necessary to have frequent inspections and pumps performed on a regular basis. We’ll teach you how to uncover and clean your tank in this post, however you’ll need to hire a professional to pump the trash out.
- 1 Locate your tank. It is best to begin with the sewage pipe at the lowest level of your home if at all feasible. Follow the path it takes out of the house after it’s out of the house. It’s possible that your tank is buried in the ground. Identifying the tank now will save you time and money later on, regardless of whether you or an inspector clean the tank. 2 Remove the tank’s top by digging it out. It’s possible that your tank is buried underground. Take a shovel and clear away the dirt from around the top of the tank before the examination begins. Your tank will have an access port lid, which should be sturdy and well-secured when closed.
- Risers can be placed on top of the tank for increased stability. These assist you in locating and gaining access to the tank without the need to dig. These can be added by septic system pumpers.
- s3 Cracks should be checked on the tank. Damaged areas should be checked all the way around the tank, including the inside. Cracks must be fixed by a professional once the tank has been pumped in order to prevent the system from failing. Keep an eye out for any corroded or damaged sections on the inlet and outlet pipes that are necessary for drainage. If your tank is equipped with a distribution box or a pump chamber, make sure everything is in working order.
- In order to determine whether or not water from your home, such as from the toilet or washing machine, makes it into your tank and subsequently drains effectively, it is helpful to run some water from your home.
- 1Make a slit in a pipe. Begin with a ten foot (3 m) length of PVC pipe. Separate it into two sections: a six inch (15.24 cm) segment and a nine and a half foot (2.9 m) section, using a saw or PVC cutter
- 2 Glue the pipes together as a group. PVC cement should be poured into the elbow joint. Using the cement and joint, attach the smaller pipe to the top of the bigger pipe. A straight pipe will protrude straight to the right or left in a “L” configuration
- 3cap both ends of the pipe. PVC caps may be purchased at the same hardware shop where you purchased the pipes, cement, and cutters. 4 Attach the caps to the pipes so that they are tight and prevent water from flowing through them. Insert the stick into the hole as far as it will go. Assemble the scum stick by holding it in a “L” form with the smaller pipe at the bottom and facing out to one side. Reduce the pipe’s diameter until it can be held against the top layer of septic tank waste without breaking through
- 5 lowering the pipe Make a mark on the stick. Make a mark on the scum’s top point with a marker or a piece of masking tape. When the pipe is resting on top of the scum layer, make a mark at the point where the pipe spans from the ground to the very top of your tank
- 6Push through the scum layer until the mark is no longer visible. Push the stick all the way through the muck. Some people find it necessary to twirl the stick so that the pointed end bursts through. When you get to the bottom of the scum layer, you’ll see that the stick is traveling through water rather than through the resistive fat and oil layer. Continue to hold the stick against the bottom of the scum in the same manner as you held it against the top of the scum, keeping the smaller pipe flat and off to the side so that the stick takes on the shape of a “L”
- 7 Make a second mark on the stick. Once again, a marker or tape should be used to designate where the scum layer terminates. Make a note at the point where the pipe crosses the ground and enters the tank’s very top
- Eight Measure the distance between the markers. Carefully remove the stick and place it on a tarp to catch any drips. Make a note of the distance between the two marks you created and use a tape measure to measure it. This represents the depth of the scum level. When the fat and oil layer reaches barely three inches (7.62 cm) above the bottom of the exit pipe, the tank must be pumped to remove the remaining liquid. Advertisement
- 1Make a slit in a pipe. Partition a ten-foot (3-meter) length of PVC pipe into five-foot (1.5-meter) portions. In order to construct a secure two-part stick, glue the pipes together as shown in the diagram. Connect the two pipes together using a straight adaptor or a threaded coupler from the hardware shop, as shown. PVC cement should be used to secure the ends in the connection
- 3cap each end. PVC caps are also available at your local hardware shop. Put one on either end of your stick and twist them together. It should be tightened so that no sewage may enter the pipe
- 4 Wrap a piece of white cloth around one end of the stick. A white cloth, towel, sock, or Velcro can be used to make a mark on the sludge to indicate the level of the sludge. Wrap the material around one end of the pipe for up to three feet (.91 m) or the whole length of the pipe, whichever is shorter. 5Push the stick through the scum hole after securing the material with the Velcro backing, tape, or string. You can drill a hole in the top layer of the tank with a stick designed for testing its scum depth if you haven’t previously done so. Then drop the sludge stick through the opening until you feel it hit the bottom of the tank
- 6remain in position for three minutes while you do this again. Allow for a minimum of three minutes of resting time on the stick. The longer you keep the stick in your hand, the more likely it is that the sludge will stain your white material
- 7Remove the stick from your hand. Continue to bring the stick back up, keeping it steady as you pull it up through the hole you formed earlier in the process. You will not discolor the stick as long as you do not move it. Prepare the stain by spreading it out on the ground where it will not be ruined and where you will be able to wipe the stick afterwards
- 8Measure the stain. Make a note of the length of the stain starting from the bottom of the stick with a tape measure. In order to prevent the sludge or scum from occupying more than one third of the tank’s depth (approximately 12 inches or 30.48 cm high), the tank must be pumped. It is necessary to pump the tank if the sludge layer is within six inches (15.24 centimeters) of the bottom of the output pipes. Advertisement
- 1 Remove the cap from the tank. During your yearly checkup, lift the tank’s lid to have a better look inside. Remove the lid and look for the pipes that lead to the waste tank and the pipes that lead to the water supply. The baffles are contained within them, and they keep scum and sludge in place.
- Start by removing the cover from the tank. During your yearly check, you should lift the tank lid. Remove the lid and look for the lines that lead to the waste tank and the pipes that lead to the water supply. It is within these that the baffles keep the scum and muck from escaping.
- 1 Pump the tank once every several years or as needed. Many individuals make the mistake of assuming that the tank does not require treatment as long as the piping looks to be in working order. It is possible to save thousands of dollars in costly repairs by doing regular maintenance on your tank before sludge builds up and liquid drains cease to flow. Every one to three years, or whenever the sludge and scum levels have occupied approximately one-third of the tank’s volume or have approached the exit pipe, this should be performed.
- The smaller the tank or the greater the number of people served by the tank, the more frequently it will need to be cleaned. A 750-gallon tank, which is normal in a two-bedroom home, will sustain two people for around four years if they do not pump it. With just four inhabitants, it will survive less than two years without pumping
- Annual treatment will maintain the tank clean and allow any issues to be addressed before they become catastrophic septic failures at a cost of a couple hundred dollars
- 2Clean up the garbage. Pumping is accomplished by the use of a cast-iron pump that can be turned on and off. The pump takes out the particles that are unable to be broken down by bacteria and transports them to a holding container, such as the inside of a tanker. If you remove the sludge and scum, there is no need to add bacteria or water into the system. Waste disposal for septic tanks. Even if you attempt to pump out the tank on your own, you must dispose of the trash in accordance with local regulations. The trash must be transferred by tanker to a place determined by the government that is distant from water and locations where people congregate. As a result, it is preferable to leave it in the hands of a specialist. Advertisement
Create a new question
- Question For what reason is it risky to clean up a septic tank? David Balkan is a licensed professional plumber who also serves as the CEO of Balkan Sewer and Water Main Service and the President of Balkan Sewer and Drain Cleaning, among other positions. With over 40 years of experience as an active owner of these businesses, David is well-versed in the challenges that arise with water service lines, sewers, and drain lines. David has served on the Executive Committee of the Sub Surface Plumbers Association of New York for more than 30 years and is now the Chairman of the Master Plumbers Council’s Committee on Plumbing. As a result of his expertise and solution-oriented approach, Balkan Sewer and Water Main Service has grown to become the biggest and most trusted sewer and water main service in New York City, and the recipient of the 2017 Angie’s List Super Service Award. Answer from a Professional PlumberExpert Sewer gas, which is prevalent in septic systems, has the potential to be lethal. It’s a quiet murderer that kills in a matter of minutes, therefore I strongly warn homeowners never to attempt to repair their own septic system. Employ the services of a professional to ensure your safety.
Inquire about something There are 200 characters remaining. Include your email address so that you may be notified when this question has been resolved. SubmitAdvertisement
- Every one to three years, have your tank examined and pumped out by a professional. A little amount of money spent on regular maintenance is preferable to dealing with a septic system that isn’t functioning properly. Higher water use, such as when numerous people reside in the house or when you use a hot tub, causes the tank to fill up more quickly. Non-waste items such as baby wipes and grease should not be disposed of. These clog the system and cause it to malfunction.
Every one to three years, have your tank examined and pumped. A modest amount of money spent on regular maintenance is preferable to dealing with a septic system that isn’t functioning properly; Water consumption increases when there are more people in the house or when you use a hot tub, resulting in a more quickly filled tank. Non-waste items such as baby wipes and oil should not be thrown away. These clog the system and cause it to malfunction; and
- Children have been seen to fall into tanks. Make certain that the lids are robust and that they are securely fastened. Septic tanks are extremely risky to enter and operate. The wastes in the tank emit very toxic vapors, which fill the tank. Work with a companion and keep a safe distance from the entrance
Things You’ll Need
- A shovel, two ten-foot (3-meter) PVC pipes, a PVC cutter or saw, PVC cement, a PVC elbow joint, a PVC connector, and four PVC end caps A white cloth, a sock, or Velcro is recommended. Tarp, measuring tape, hose and bucket, baffle filter, etc.
About This Article
Summary of the ArticleX Maintaining the cleanliness of your septic tank will save you money on costly repairs down the road. Annual filter cleaning and tank pumping are required to keep your septic tank in good working order, but you may save money by doing it yourself. Generally speaking, your filter will be positioned in the tank’s exit baffle and will be brightly colored. Cleaning it is as simple as spraying it with water from the tank or submerging it in a pail of clean water for an hour or so.
The sludge and scum levels in your tank should be pumped out every one to three years, or whenever they reach a third of the total capacity.
Continue reading for additional information, including how to measure the sludge and scum depths in your septic tank.
Thank you to all writers for contributing to this page, which has been read 69,717 times so far.
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Synopsis of the pieceX Maintaining the cleanliness of your septic tank will save you money on future repairs. Annual filter cleaning and tank pumping are required to keep your septic tank in good working condition. Usually brightly colored, your filter should be situated in the tank’s exit baffle and should be easy to see. Cleaning it is as simple as spraying it with water from the tank or submerging it in a pail of clean water for several minutes. Pour the filthy water into the tank if you’re using a bucket to collect it after finishing your job.
As this will require the use of a cast-iron pump, and the garbage will need to be transported to a government-designated landfill, it’s better to hire a professional to complete the task.
To learn more about septic tank maintenance, including how to evaluate the scum and sludge depth in your system, continue reading! Were you able to benefit from this overview? The writers of this page have together authored a page that has been read 69,717 times.
What Are Septic Tanks Made From?
Septic tanks are a waterproof box composed of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene material that is used to dispose of sewage. In other words, there will be no debris, dirt, or water from the surrounding ground that may get into the tank. Septic tanks made of concrete and/or fiberglass are the most common types.
Common Styles Of Septic Tanks
ATUs treat and filter waste by separating it into three compartments: a garbage compartment, an aeration chamber, and a clarification compartment. An aerobic, or thoroughly oxygenated, environment is created in the effluent by forcing compressed air through it. Because the bacteria thrive in this environment, waste decomposes more quickly than it would in a conventional septic tank. This helps to limit the quantity of organic material that enters the soil and groundwater around the house.
Most tanks built since 1976 feature two compartments for filtering effluent, sediments, and wastewater that enters the tank during the construction process. The first compartment, which is placed adjacent to the intake pipe, is often bigger than the second compartment, which is located further away. It is possible to see the liquid flowing from the first container into the second compartment. Before the effluent is discharged into the outflow pipe, any remaining sludge and scum separate from the liquid.
The quantity of wastewater that flows from the septic tank is controlled by a pump tank. Pump tank level increases as effluent accumulates in the tank and eventually reaches the level set by a control float. As soon as the float is activated, the pump starts pumping effluent into the drain field in a predefined volume.
In lieu of septic tanks, holding tanks can be used to collect and store waste. They are either above or below ground and require constant pumping to remove the contents of their holding tanks. The majority of holding tanks are equipped with an alarm that sounds when the tank is full.
In lieu of septic tanks, holding tanks can be used to store waste. They are either above or below ground and require constant pumping to eliminate the contents of their respective contents. In most cases, when a holding tank is nearly full, an alarm will ring to alert the user.
What Is FOG?
The use of holding tanks as a substitute for septic tanks is becoming more popular. It is necessary to pump these tanks on a regular basis in order to eliminate the contents. The majority of holding tanks are equipped with an alarm that sounds when the tank is nearly full.
How A Septic Tank Works
Solids sink to the bottom of the tank’s intake pipe, while FOG rises to the surface of the wastewater and collects at the top of the tank’s intake pipe. In most cases, the tank is large enough to keep wastewater for an extended period of time, allowing effulent separation to take place. There are three levels within the tank as a result of this separation: a sludge layer on the bottom, a wastewater layer in the middle, and a scum layer on top. bacteria, enzymes, and other microorganisms often present in human waste begin to break down the sludge layer and break down the sludge layer further.
Upon entry into the septic tank and drain field, two baffles direct and filter the water. The intake baffle prevents the scum layer from obstructing the inflow pipe, while the outflow baffle keeps scum and particles in the tank until they are removed by the drain.
What Are Septic Tank Solids?
The majority of solids contained in a septic tank may be divided into three categories:
- Non-biodegradable organic solids include pet litter, plastics, and other items that do not decompose over time
- Biodegradable organic solids include vegetable scraps and other cellulosic compounds, as well as toilet paper
- And biodegradable organic solids include solid human feces.
Septic System Drain Fields
After leaving the septic tank, effluent goes into a drain field, which is a network of underground pipes and dirt that collects the waste. Other phrases that are commonly used include absorption field, leach field, and trench. The size of the space required is determined by the following factors:
- Soil type
- Seasonal variations in groundwater level
- Amount of water absorbed each day
- And soil percolation rate are all factors to consider.
The soil percolation rate is defined as the amount of water that the soil can absorb in one minute per inch of soil thickness. A significant consideration in determining the site of a septic drain field in Florida is the percolation rate, which is crucial because the state has a high water table.
How A Drain Field Works
An underground network of perforated pipes may be found in this location, which can be found in either several trenches or a gravel-lined soil bed. Drainage from the pipes filters through the gravel and dirt before entering the sewer system. Compaction of the soil has a significant impact on its function, which is why it is critical not to construct structures on it or drive or park vehicles of any size over it.
Why Is A Drain Field Important?
Natural filtration is provided for effluent, which is recycled back into the groundwater source. It is possible that biological and chemical pollutants may infiltrate the water and create health problems for anybody who consumed or came into touch with the water without this filtering system in place.
How To Find Your Septic TankSeptic Drain Field
The location of the septic system will be shown on the majority of property plans and surveys. Possibly handed to you after the sale of your house or company, these documents are also maintained on file at the county government office. The septic tank is often built along the sewage line that leads away from the house or other structure. When this line is many inches in diameter, it means that it is located at the lowest level of your home, such as a basement or crawl space. Stick a metal probe every two feet along the sewage line as it exits the house, following it all the way out to the street.
Locate the borders of the septic tank lid with the probe – typically tanks are 5 feet by 8 feet in size, so this may take some time.
As soon as you discover a discrepancy between the system location and previously prepared diagrams or maps, make sure to update these materials and retain a duplicate for your records.
The Septic Tank Pumping Process
In order to prepare for extraction, the floating scum layer is first broken up by alternately sucking out liquid from the tank and pumping it back in to break up the bottom solid layer. Pumping is accomplished through the two access ports, which are referred to as manholes. The tank should never be pumped through the inspection apertures on the baffle wall.
This can not only cause damage to the baffles, but it can also result in insufficient waste removal from the tank. Until the septic tank is completely depleted, industrial vacuums are used to remove waste from the tank and into our tanker truck.
How Often A Septic Tank Should Be Pumped?
In order to prepare for extraction, the floating scum layer must first be broken up by alternately taking out liquid from the tank and pumping it back in to break up the bottom solid layer. It is necessary to pump water via the two access ports, which are referred to as “manholes.” Pumping via the baffle inspection ports should never be done with the tank in it. The baffles may be damaged as a result of this, and the waste may be removed from the tank insufficiently as a result. Until the septic tank is completely depleted, industrial vacuums are used to remove waste from the tank and into our vehicle.
What To Expect During A Septic Tank Pumping
Before starting the pumping process, it is necessary to measure the thickness of the scum and sludge. This information is important in determining the pace at which waste accumulates and in determining when the next pumping should be scheduled. The pumping process is monitored closely by our personnel, who are actively monitoring for any possible system problems, such as backflow from the outflow pipe. Backflow that is significant typically indicates a backup in the drainfield, whereas slight backflow indicates a weaker outflow line in most cases.
Septic Tank Cleaning
Septic tank cleaning and septic tank pumping are not the same thing, despite the fact that many people use the phrases interchangeably. Pumping just removes liquid and uncompressed materials; cleaning, on the other hand, eliminates any leftover solids before washing the interior of the tank with soap and water. Following the removal of the liquid layer from the tank, our professionals employ pressured jets of water to break up any residual particles in the tank. Solids are removed from the tank with the use of an industrial-grade vacuum and a connected hose before the inside of the tank is washed.
This can result in the formation of sinkholes or the breakdown of the entire system.
How Often Should A Septic Tank Be Cleaned?
With every septic tank pump out, there is a new beginning. Keep in mind that the frequency with which the tank is pumped is determined by the number of people who are using the system and the volume of wastewater created on a daily basis. You may work with an aseptic tank pumping firm, such as Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service, to establish a regular pumping and cleaning program for your tank.
How To Keep A Septic Tank In Good Condition Between Cleanings
The most effective strategy to ensure that your septic tank remains in good working order for many years is to be informed of what can and cannot be put into the system.
Don’t DisposeFlush Items At-Will
In order to degrade materials that enter the tank, a septic system relies on bacteria that are found in nature. Although it is a mutually beneficial connection, it is susceptible to being pushed out of balance depending on the materials that are disposed of. Fat, oil, and grease (FOG); chemicals, paints, fuels, and/or motor oils; disposable diapers, sanitary, and personal hygiene products; coffee grounds; egg and nut shells; and disposable diapers, sanitary, and personal hygiene products are all common household items that should never be flushed down the toilet.
Schedule Annual Inspections
Home and business owners may do an outside inspection of their septic system on their own. However, only a professional and skilled septic tank firm, such as Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service, should check the tank and its interior components. Because of the formation of toxic vapors and gases within the sewage treatment plant, it is dangerous to work near one without the proper safety equipment and training. Look for areas of unusually tall grass, sewage odors or smells, and unexplained standing water as you walk around the area where the septic tank is situated.
PumpClean The Tank As Necessary
Skipping regular septic tank services is a surefire way to end yourself in a situation that might have been avoided. Performing routine pumping and cleaning allows our personnel to check the overall health of the system and correct any issues that may arise before they become a major concern.
Keep Records Of Septic LocationService
It is essential to understand the location of the entire system in order to properly maintain it. Parking or driving cars over any portion of the septic system should be avoided at all costs. The weight of vehicles can cause the system to collapse. When this occurs, the only option for repair is a complete replacement. It is also recommended by Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service that you preserve records of when the system was examined, pumped, and cleaned for your own records and in case you decide to sell your home in the future.
The volume of water entering a septic system has a greater influence on the health of the system than the amount of solids created by the system. The greater the volume of water that flows through the drain field, the shorter the functional lifespan of the drain field and the overall system. An excessive amount of water flow impairs effective separation of particles inside the tank, increasing the likelihood of clogged intake and outflow pipes, which can result in sewage backups in the tank.
Septic Tank Repair In Gainesville, FL
Too much water in the septic tank increases the likelihood of sediments being transferred into the pipes, which might result in a clogged system.
Aggressive Tree Roots
Tree roots are well-known for generating problems with septic tanks and systems. Many species of tree roots are stronger than septic tanks, and they can cause leaks and other structural damage by cracking the pipes and tank.
Common Septic Tank Repairs
There are a variety of reasons why the pipes might fail, including compacted and/or moving soil. Once the pipes burst, they must be fixed as soon as possible to avoid significant drainage problems. When it comes to reaching and repairing the pipes, excavation of the area is frequently necessary.
The baffles of a septic tank are responsible for keeping sediments contained within the tank. Rust or contact with sulfuric acid are the most common causes of damage. It is quite beneficial to have an annual septic check performed in order to see if there are any difficulties with the baffles before a problem occurs.
How To Prevent A Septic Tank Failure
The fact is that septic systems are not foolproof and that they benefit immensely from routine maintenance and upkeep.
The majority of failures may be avoided by paying attention to what goes into the plumbing and septic lines.
Only Flush Toilet Paper
As a rule, toilet paper degrades and disintegrates more quickly than other types of paper goods. Particularly problematic are paper towels and wet wipes, which are two of the most prevalent causes of septic tank clogging and premature tank cleanouts.
Never Pour FOG Down The Drain
FOG is extremely harmful to all plumbing systems, including the septic system. FOG, when it is in liquid form, readily flows into the septic tank and collects in the top scum layer of the tank. This may not appear to be a problem, but the mixture has the potential to run into the drain field, where it might cause contamination concerns with groundwater and the surrounding soil if allowed to do so.
Regular Drain Cleaning
The numerous commercial drain cleaners available may temporarily unclog a clogged drain and associated plumbing, but they do so at the expense of the septic system’s ability to function properly. They include chemicals that swiftly eliminate the bacteria that are important for the decomposition of particles within the septic tank once they are applied. The layer of solids accumulates quickly — and needlessly — on the surface of the water. As an alternative, call a plumber to do expert drain cleaning.
How To Tell When You Need A New Septic System
The numerous commercial drain cleaners on the market may temporarily unclog a clogged drain or other plumbing, but they do so at the expense of the septic system’s ability to function. They include chemicals that swiftly eliminate the bacteria that are important for the decomposition of materials within the septic tank when they are introduced. The layer of solids accumulates at an alarmingly quick pace — and for no apparent reason. Instead, get a plumber to clear your drains properly and thoroughly.
- Sinks and toilets that take a long time to drain
- Plumbing that is always backed up
- Sewage odors in the company, house, or yard
- Patchy mushy, swampy, or damp areas of the yard Gray water that has accumulated
- And grass that has grown more swiftly and is a darker shade of green
What To Know Before A Septic Tank Is Installed
In order to prevent the contamination of water sources and the creation of public health hazards that can result from incorrectly designed septic systems, the state of Florida and local municipalities have established rules and regulations to guide new septic system installations.
Required Applications, FeesPermits
The Environmental Health Service of the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) in Alachua County is responsible for issuing the necessary applications and permits. Before a permit may be issued, the house or business owner must submit a completed application, as well as a site plan, a building floor plan, and any applicable application costs to the local building department. A site evaluation is also necessary, which analyzes the overall condition of the land, as well as the soil type. Total fees are determined on the kind of septic system installed as well as the services provided by the county health division.
Minimum Tank Size
A minimum 900-gallon capacity is required for all septic tanks in Florida; however, this capacity requirement rises based on the size of the occupancy and whether the system is intended for residential or commercial usage.
The specialists at Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service can assist you in determining the right tank size that complies with local and state specifications.
A minimum 900-gallon capacity is required for all septic tanks in Florida; however, the required capacity rises based on the size of the occupancy and whether the system is intended for residential or commercial usage. Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service professionals will assist you in determining the right size tank that will fulfill all applicable state regulations.
- If the property is located more than 75 feet from the annual flood line of a permanent, non-tidal surface water body or from the high water line of a tidal body of water, the following restrictions apply: 15 feet from a dry drainage ditch or stormwater retention area
- 10 feet from stormwater pipelines
- At least 200 feet away from public drinkable wells that are already in use for non-residential or residential structures with a total daily sewage discharge of more than 2,000 gallons
- And At least 11 feet away from any water storage tanks that come into touch with potable or groundwater
- A minimum of 15 feet away from a groundwater interceptor drain is required
- Minimum distances between bays, lakes and surface water
- Minimum distances between multi-family wells and/or private potable water wells
- And minimum distances between other wells.
New Home ConstructionSeptic Systems
Construction of new dwellings in rural locations or in any area that is not served by a municipal sewer system necessitates the installation of septic systems. Any system installed as part of a new house building project will have to take into consideration the elements and laws outlined above. In addition to establishing septic systems for countless new houses, Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service is happy to assist you through the application and permitting process, in addition to properly installing the system.
8 Signs of Septic System Failure
Construction of new residences in rural locations or in places that are not served by a municipal sewer system necessitates the installation of septic systems. It will be necessary to take into consideration the considerations and laws outlined above when installing a system in a new house building. A number of new houses have been built using Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service’s septic systems, and we are happy to assist you with the application and permitting process, as well as professionally installing the system.
1. Septic System Backup
Everything that has to do with plumbing in your home is tied to your septic system. Sewage and wastewater will no longer be able to enter the tank if your septic system malfunctions or becomes overburdened. Instead, it will remain in the pipes until it begins to rise to the surface again. Sewage and wastewater back up into sinks, drains, and even into your toilet as a result of this condition. A clogged septic tank is the most obvious indicator of a failing system. You should contact a qualified plumber as soon as you discover this symptom to get it repaired.
2. Slow Drains
Slow drainage might also be caused by a clogged septic tank. For example, if a septic tank is completely filled, it will no longer actively collect wastewater from the ground. This implies that your pipes will become blocked with sewage and will be unable to drain your plumbing appliances properly. Your drains will become naturally sluggish in draining water or other liquids, as a result of this phenomenon. Even if you utilize the best gear available to unclog your drain, you will not be successful since the fundamental problem is located in the septic tank.
3. Gurgling Sounds
When using plumbing appliances, you should also be on the lookout for any unusual sounds that may occur. For example, if you flush your toilet and hear strange gurgling sounds, you should call a plumber right once to assess the situation. Toilets generally emit water-related sounds that subside once the flushing cycle is completed. If, on the other hand, you hear sounds that sound like an upset stomach, you may have a serious problem.
If you are hearing gurgling noises coming from your drains, the same logic applies. Gurgling sounds indicate a blockage or a problem with the internal septic system, both of which require rapid attention.
4. Pool of Water or Dampness Near Drainfield
When using plumbing appliances, you should be on the lookout for unusual sounds. Suppose you flush your toilet and you hear strange gurgling sounds. In this case, it is necessary to contact a plumber immediately. Toilets generally create water-related noises that subside once the flushing process is completed. The opposite is true if you hear sounds that seem like they come from an upset stomach. If you notice gurgling noises coming from your drains, the same idea applies to them. Gurgling sounds indicate a blockage or a problem with the internal septic system that must be addressed right once.
5. Nasty Odors
When using plumbing appliances, you should also be on the lookout for unusual sounds. In the case of a toilet flush, if you hear strange gurgling sounds, you should call a plumber right away. Toilets generally emit water-related sounds that subside once the flushing cycle is complete. If, on the other hand, you hear sounds that sound like an upset stomach, you have a serious problem. If you hear gurgling noises coming from your drains, the same logic applies. Gurgling sounds indicate a blockage or a problem with the internal septic system that must be addressed immediately.
6. Unusual, Bright Green Grass Above Drainfield
Have you ever seen people applying mulch, fertilizers, and manure to their lawns in order to encourage it to grow more quickly? It is possible that sewage has the same features as manure, namely that it contains nutrients such as nitrogen, potassium, phosphorus, and micronutrients that plants can use to thrive. When you see exceptionally green grass near your drainfield, it is likely that wastewater is leaking into your lawn from the drainfield itself. Due to the fact that grass is naturally green, identifying this symptom might be difficult.
Pay close attention to your drainfield in order to identify this problem before it becomes too serious.
7. Blooms of Algae in Nearby Water
If you live near a body of water, such as a lake or pond, keep an eye out for unexpected algal blooms that appear out of nowhere. Due to the fact that most individuals regard the appearance of algae to be a regular occurrence, diagnosing this symptom can also be difficult. Algal blooms, on the other hand, occur when a huge concentration of algae forms in a body of water. They appear to be artificial and to be the result of excessive algal contamination in the water. When wastewater is present, it might lead to the growth of algae that is aberrant.
8. High Levels of Coliform in Water Well
A neighboring water well may also be able to identify abnormal amounts of coliform bacteria as well as high quantities of nitrogen dioxide (nitrogen dioxide). However, if your septic system fails, the water in your well will get contaminated with bacteria and harsh chemicals by effluent from the surrounding area.
Give Us a Call Right Now! Any problems with your septic tank now occupy your thoughts? If this is the case, please contact us at (941) 721-4645 to talk with a member of our staff. You may also learn more about our septic services by visiting this page.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do you have any other queries concerning septic systems? Please let us know. If this is the case, you may find a comprehensive list of FAQs farther down on this page.
How much do septic system repair services cost?
- A septic system repair service might cost anywhere from $500 to $2,000 in labor and materials. The ultimate cost is determined by the extent of the task, the number of hours worked, and other factors.
Can a septic drainfield be repaired?
- Even though there is no quick remedy for drainfield repair, it is achievable if you employ an expert plumber or septic system specialist.
How often do septic systems need to be replaced?
- Septic systems may endure for more than 40 years if they are properly maintained. Every three years, the average septic tank should be examined and pumped out in order to avoid long-term problems and septic system failure.