ACCORDING TO UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY:
Did you know the average household septic system should be inspected at least every three years by a septic service professional and household septic tanks are typically pumped every three to five years?
Your septic tank includes a T-shaped outlet which prevents sludge and scum from leaving the tank and traveling to the drain field 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.
PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE: USE WATER EFFICIENTLY.
- The average indoor water use in a typical single-family home is nearly 70 gallons per individual, per day. Just a single leaky or running toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons of water per day. All of the water a household sends down its pipes winds up in its septic system. The more water a household conserves, the less water enters the septic system. Efficient water use improves the operation of a septic system and reduces the risk of failure
- Use high-efficiency toilets: Replacing existing toilets with high-efficiency models is an easy way to reduce the amount of household water entering your septic system.
- Washing Machines: Clothes washers that bear the ENERGY STAR label use 35 percent less energy and 50 percent less water than standard models.
- Properly dispose of waste: Whether you flush it down the toilet, grind it in the garbage disposal, or pour it down the sink, shower, or bath, everything that goes down your drains ends up in your septic system. What goes down the drain affects how well your septic system works. Your septic system contains a collection of living organisms that digest and treat household waste. Pouring toxins down your drain can kill these organisms and harm your septic system. Whether you are at the kitchen sink, bathtub, or utility sink.
MAINTAIN YOUR DRAIN FIELD:
Your drain field—a component of your septic system that removes contaminants from the liquid that emerges from your septic tank—is an important part of your septic system. Here are a few things you should do to maintain it:
- Parking: Never park or drive on your drain field.
- Planting: Plant trees the appropriate distance from your drain field to keep roots from growing into your septic system. A septic service professional can advise you of the proper distance, depending on your septic tank and landscape.
- Placing: Keep roof drains, sump pumps, and other rainwater drainage systems away from your drain field area. Excess water slows down or stops the wastewater treatment process.