Septic System Care

Understanding and caring for your home septic system will help avoid problems and ensure long lasting trouble-free service. Proper care is easy when you have answers to some common questions.

How often should the septic tank be pumped?

Your septic tank should be pumped every 1-3 years, when the sludge in the tank is approaching the 1/3 full mark. If more than this amount of sludge builds up, there is a chance that particles can get into the disposal field and clog the system. To ensure regular service, keep a maintenance record of your system. E. C. Babbert, Inc. can help. We provide quality pumping services.

How does the use of household water affect the system?

Conserve water. The more water that is used, the more that must be disposed of by the septic system drain fields. Buy water-conserving appliances such as dishwashers and washing machine. Install water-conserving shower heads and faucets. Avoid unnecessary flushing of the stool. Wash only full loads of clothes, and fix leaky faucets.

What common household habits create problems in a septic tank?

Some homeowners use their septic tank as a disposal. Grease is the worst thing in a septic system. Coffee grounds, bones, cooking fats, filter cigarette butts, disposable diapers, paper towels, tissues, etc. should not be put in the system.

Can a garbage disposal be used?

Yes if used properly. No fats, no meats, no deep fry oils.

What affect does rain water runoff have on the system?

It overloads the system. Since all water must be disposed of, do not have storm or clear water from the basement or roof drain into the sewage treatment system.

What about the use of household cleaning products?

Moderate use of bleaches, cleansers and other household products will not harm your septic tank.

Is there any special type of toilet paper required?

White toilet paper designed for septic tank use is best, because there are no dyes that need to be broken down in white paper.

What else can I do to protect the system?

A properly designed and installed system will give you years of trouble-free service if you protect the system with good daily habits and pump the septic tank regularly. E. C. Babbert, Inc. can help. We provide quality pumping services. If you are building a home or purchasing a home with a septic system there are things you should do to ensure you have a trouble-free system. Visit our Building a Home - Septic System page or our Purchasing a Home - Septic System page for details.

What safety precautions should be taken?

  • Absolutely never go into a septic tank. Lethal gases build up in the tank and are overpowering as well as deadly. Call professionals if you have a problem with your system.
  • Know where the clean-out riser cover is located. It should be at grade or above and with clear access for inspection and pumping.
  • Septic tanks that are no longer in use should be pumped clean, then removed or filled with sand, or crushed and covered with earth.
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