Septic System Maintenance 101
There are a few things you should know about your septic system.
A septic system is an amazing structure that works in coordination with the various components of the system, as well as with the soil in your home’s property. It takes the wastewater and waste materials produced in your home - through the home’s plumbing system - and treats that material in order to eventually turn that effluent water into usable, potable water.*
However, in order to make the system work properly, it MUST be maintained on a regular basis. That is where Alm & Son Septic Service comes in.
Water from toilets, sinks, showers, and other appliances is called wastewater and can be harmful to human health. Wastewater contains harmful bacteria, viruses, and nutrients that could make you sick if it comes in contact with your drinking water well. You should ALWAYS Avoid flushing chemicals or medications down the drain or toilet since they could also contaminate your drinking water well.
Wastewater generated in your home exits through a drainage pipe, or main line pipe and then runs into a septic tank. The septic tank is a buried, water-tight container that holds wastewater for separation and treatment.
As water moves through the small soil pores, wastewater particles are removed, thus eliminating cloudiness. Naturally occurring microbes attach and grow on the surface of soil particles and consume the wastewater organic matter and nutrients as their food. Filtering wastewater through the soil removes most bacteria and viruses (also known as pathogens) and some nutrients.
However, if the drainfield is overloaded with too much liquid or clogged with solids, it will flood and cause sewage to surface in your yard or back up into your home.
Again, this is why your septic tank should be serviced and pumped out on a regular basis by Alm & Son Septic to make sure that it’s working properly. This also includes routine maintenance of components such as the Outlet Tee Filter. If this filter should become clogged it could cause your tank to fail and to backup contaminants into your home. That is NOT a prospect that you want to look forward to!
If you have a well for drinking water on your property, the water table is of chief concern. The water table on your property is found where you first hit water if you dig a hole into the ground. The water below the water table is called groundwater. Groundwater flowing underneath a drainfield captures any remaining contaminants released from the septic system. A drinking water well is at greater risk of becoming contaminated if it is in the path of groundwater flow beneath a septic system.
The solids settle to the bottom (sludge) and fats, oil and grease float to the top (scum). Natuarally occurring microorganisms act to break down the sludge and destroy some of the contaminants in the wastewater. These are the two components (scum and sludge) that Alm & Son Septic will remove in the process of pumping your septic system.
The drainfield, or leachfiled is a shallow, covered trench made in the soil in your yard. Partially treated wastewater from the septic tank flows out through the drainfield, filters down through the soil and enters the groundwater. Filtering through soil is a natural treatment process.
A drinking water well is drilled or dug into the groundwater so water can be pumped to the surface. Deep wells located farther away from a septic system and not in the path of the groundwater flow from the septic system are least likely to be contaminated. Drinking water wells should be regularly tested to ensure your home’s water is safe to drink.
Call us today with any questions you might have. Alm & Son Septic Service is standing by and ready to serve. (800) 224-4256.
* Drinking water, also known as potable water, is water that is safe to drink or to use for food preparation. Typically in developed countries, tap water meets drinking water quality standards, even though only a small proportion is actually consumed or used in food preparation. Other typical uses include washing, toilets, and irrigation. Greywater may also be used for toilets or irrigation. Its use for irrigation however may be associated with risks. Water may also be unacceptable due to levels of toxins or suspended solids.