If you are one of one in five homes that use a septic tank, it is critical to remember to regularly pump your tank. A clogged tank can cause all sorts of problems, from sewage backup to septic tank leaks. So today, the team at Priority Pumping is here to talk about the importance of septic tank pumping and how often you should pump your septic tank.
How Does a Septic Tank Work?
A septic tank is a separate unit that exists for residential sewage treatment. Septic tanks accept waste from your house, treat it, and safely drain the wastewater. All septic tanks have three major components.
- The tank is the central reservoir that holds the wastewater, sludge (settled waste), and scum (floating waste). Sewage enters the tank and exits via the distribution box.
- The distribution box funnels the wastewater out of the septic tank to drain. The pipes in a distribution box have a “T” shape that keeps sludge and scum from exiting the tank.
- The leach field is a series of pipes with holes that filter the wastewater into the soil. The leach field is the last stop for wastewater.
What Is Septic Tank Pumping?
The point of septic tank pumping is to remove the sludge layer at the bottom of your tank. Under typical operation, the chemical breakdown of sludge significantly reduces its volume. Sludge in your tank should never take up more than 25% of the contents of the septic tank.
Over time, sludge in the tank builds up and can clog the outlet pipes that drain wastewater. If the sludge clogs the outlet pipe, your tank can start to back up or suffer other kinds of damage. Septic tank pumping removes the sludge layer so your septic tank can work properly.
Contractors use powerful vacuum equipment to remove excess sludge from your tank. The contractors then dispose of the sludge off-site at treatment facilities. Depending on the size of your tank and the pump equipment, it can take anywhere between 30 minutes to two hours to empty your tank.
Benefits of Septic Tank Pumping
Regular septic tank pumping is a crucial part of proper septic tank maintenance and care. Below are just a few of the benefits of having your septic tank pumped.
Stop Water Contamination
If you use a well for water usage, an overflowing septic tank can cause water contamination. Tanks that are too full of sewage don’t drain properly and can seep into your groundwater source instead of the appropriate leach field. Water contamination from sewage poses a serious health risk, so it’s crucial to regularly test your water source for contamination.
Avoid Sewage Backups
Sewage backups occur when your tank is too full, and wastewater cannot pass through the distribution box. The increased pressure can cause raw sewage to back up into your home through your toilets, showers, dishwasher, and other water-using appliances. Water from sewage backup typically has a gray or black color.
Prevent Expensive Damage
Septic tank damage can be very serious and expensive to repair. Regular pumping reduces tank pressure and protects your septic tank from damage. Replacing a damaged septic tank can cost upwards of $10,000, so it’s crucial to remember pumping to reduce the risk of damage.
Stop Bad Odors
Your septic tank plays a role in sewage treatment by breaking down organic liquid waste to drain into the leach field. Waste breakdown produces methane and sulfur, both of which produce a foul odor. If your tank is too full, the gasses can back up into your home, causing bad smells to come from the pipes in your home.
If your toilets are slow to flush, it could be due to a backed-up septic tank. Septic tank pumping relieves tank pressure, allowing pipes and fixtures in your home, such as toilets, to drain quickly and properly. Slow flushing could also be due to a clog in your pipes from a full septic tank.
Lastly, septic tank pumping protects the environment by ensuring proper removal and drainage of wastewater. Improper sewage treatment can contaminate soil and nearby bodies of water. This contamination can affect entire neighborhoods, not just your property.
How Often Should I Pump My Septic Tank?
Our experts recommend you hire a professional to pump your septic tank at least once every three to five years. If you have a large household and your septic tank sees frequent use, we recommend pumping once every one to three years. Many homeowners neglect septic tank maintenance until they notice a problem.
We recommend you also schedule septic tank cleaning and an inspection when you pump your tank. Inspections and cleaning can identify potential problems, such as cracks in the tank or root infiltration. A regular schedule of septic tank inspections, repairs, and pumping can keep your tank in good condition and extend its lifespan.
Septic Tank Pumping in Mesa
Our team at Priority Pumping dedicates itself to providing exceptional septic services and educating our customers on septic systems. Our goal is to provide a superior customer experience with our industry-leading septic services. We have several years of experience offering septic services in Mesa, Phoenix, and the surrounding areas. No matter your septic needs, we have the skills to assist.
If you would like to schedule septic tank pumping, contact Priority Pumping online or call today at (602) 601-5751!