4 Things That Determine How Soon You Need Septic System Pumping
Septic system pumping is an essential service when you have your own septic system. Solids don't break down completely and flush out of the tank like water does. Instead, they accumulate in the tank until the tank overflows, unless septic system pumping is done. Here's a look at what affects how fast your tank fills between pumping sessions.
1. How Fast Debris Dissolves
Debris that dissolves fast in water is better for your tank than debris that takes weeks or months to break down (if it ever does). When shopping for toilet paper, look for paper that says it dissolves fast or that it's safe for septic systems. You can even do a test at home by putting some toilet paper in a bowl to see how quickly it dissolves. Some toilet paper breaks down in minutes, while thick paper towels take a long time.
Food from the garbage disposal takes even longer. So, remember not to use your toilet, kitchen sink, or garbage disposal as a trashcan so your tank won't fill up too fast.
2. How Much Fat And Grease Goes Down The Drain
The contents of your septic tank naturally separate into three layers. The bottom layer is where solids collect, the middle layer is where water collects, and the top layer is where fat floats on top. Even if the solid layer isn't too thick yet, you might need your tank pumped if the fat layer builds up too much.
Pouring grease down the drain is not a good idea since it can clog your pipes, but it also fills up your septic tank. The thicker the fat layer gets, the closer it gets to the exit drain. If fats start spilling out of the tank, the fat could clog the drainfield and lead to expensive repairs.
3. How Well The Microbes Work
The solids in the bottom of your septic tank are broken down over time by bacteria and turned into sludge. The bacteria in your tank manage to stay active and healthy on their own unless you pour things into the tank regularly that kill the bacteria.
Products that might affect the bacteria in your tank include bleach, cleaning products, antibacterial soaps, and drain cleaners. Always be thinking of your septic system when you buy products that will go down the drain and buy those that are septic system safe so the bacteria can break down the waste in the tank.
4. How Many People Live In Your Home
A change in the number of people living in your home changes how fast the tank fills. If you get a roommate or if you get a divorce and suddenly live alone, the frequency of septic system pumping may change.
Instead of waiting for a set date to pump your tank, keep an eye on how well your septic system is working so you can tell if you need to call a septic system pumping contractor earlier than scheduled.
Contact a local septic service, such as Morris Septic & Sewer, to learn more.