Septic systems are invaluable in homes not connected to the public sewer system. They treat wastewater from your home’s plumbing fixtures like toilets, laundry, and kitchens through technological and natural processes. You have to properly maintain your septic system to avoid expenses, drainage issues, and dealing with raw sewage. The first step towards proper maintenance is understanding how it works. Luckily, experts who offer the best plumbing in Chattanooga are here to help!
How Does a Septic System Work?
The septic system comprises the tank and the drain field. Wastewater from your household travels to the septic tank located underground. The assumption that the tank only stores wastewater to be cleaned out periodically is incorrect. It acts as a filter as follows:
- Wastewater gets into the septic tank
- Gradually, heavy solids sink to the bottom, where bacteria reduce them to gasses and sludge.
- Lighter solids, oil, and grease rise to the top and form a scum layer.
- Effluent left in the middle then exits the tank to the drain field through perforated pipes buried in the soil.
Just like typical sewer connections, septic systems require regular, continuous plumbing maintenance to avoid problems. Common plumbing issues you need to be aware of to avoid a septic disaster include:
Septic systems rely on pipe connections. They are vital in keeping the water moving from your home to the septic tank or from the tank to the drain field. Clogs block your pipes, especially if it has been years since you pumped out your septic tank.
Solid waste that doesn’t decompose needs to be periodically removed by pumping to prevent clogging. You can hire professionals providing the best plumbing in Chattanooga to pump out the waste using a specialized vacuum hose.
Worn and Damaged Pipes
Pipes are subject to wear and tear, which will affect your septic system’s functioning. It will result in leaks outside the designated draining field and contaminated water pouring into the environment.
You should avoid growing trees or shrubs within 30 feet of the septic system. Tree roots can grow aggressively towards the septic pipes until they are completely damaged or blocked. Once you notice nasty odors or damp spots, call the best plumbing in Chattanooga to repair or replace leaking pipes.
Tips to Maintain Your Septic Plumbing
Schedule regular servicing with the best plumbing service in Chattanooga. The EPA recommends frequent pumping and inspection of household septic systems. Service intervals should be guided by household size, amount of wastewater, tank size, and solids volume.
You should remain mindful of what goes down the drain. Water from sinks, toilets, washing machines and showers all goes to the septic tank. You should ensure motor oils, cigarette filters, diapers, condoms, tampons, or paints are not introduced into the system.
You should also use bacteria additives to replace natural bacteria that’s been killed by chemicals. The additives comprise live organic bacteria that break down solids entering the septic system and keeps the system functioning.