5 Ways to Make Your Septic System Last

If you have a septic system, it is likely the most expensive “system” in your home. The cost of replacing a septic system is usually much more than a HVAC, gutters or even some roof replacements. Given the high price tag, you want to ensure your septic system lasts as long as possible. The good news is many homeowners will never need to replace their septic system in their lifetime if they protect it. Here are five ways to protect your septic system and make it last for decades.

Limit What You Put Down the Drain

First and foremost, protecting your septic system starts with disposal in your home. Limiting water use with water-efficient fixtures and practices is important. You should also keep damaging substances out of your drains such as: chemicals, antibacterial cleansers, non-organic materials, feminine hygiene products and grease/fats.

Protect Your Sewer Lines

Do not let vehicles or heavy machinery drive over where your sewer lines and underground pipes are located to protect them from damage.

Pump Tank as Needed

Do not let your septic tank get too full. You should have it pumped as needed, usually every three to five years.

Routine Inspections

You should have a professional inspect your septic system once a year to check tank levels and all the equipment. Replace parts and components as needed to prevent emergency breakdown issues.

Use a Professional for Repairs

Do not try to fix septic problems on your own. Considering the value of your system, spend the money to have a professional complete all repairs.

If you keep up with maintenance on your septic system and protect it from harm, you can postpone replacement for years. It is worth the investment of time and money to make your septic system last.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing Inc
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Who Should I Call for a Sewer Line Problem?

If you are on a city sewer system, you pay for your waste treatment service and expect them to handle any issues that occur. Waste from your home is whisked away through the municipal sewer system and brought to a treatment plant, a much easier process for a homeowner than a septic system. However, first it must get from your home to the main city sewer line. When you have sewer backup or a broken sewer pipe, you may wonder who to call, a sewer professional or your sewer utility provider.

Home Sewer Line Repairs

In most situations, the city sewer service only covers the main sewer line, not the connecting pipes that go into your home. This means any sewer pipes between the connection to the main line and your home are your responsibility. If your sewer line breaks and is leaking into your yard, you will need to have it repaired. The same is true if a clog in your private sewer line is backing up sewage into your home. These pipes, like the ones in your home, are owned by you and are not considered part of the city sewer service.

Call a Sewer Service Pro

If you are having a sewer line problem, call a sewer service professional. While a plumber can fix pipes in your home, you want a company that handles sewer or septic repairs. A quick inspection can determine where the problem is and what needs to be done to fix the problem. A professional can also determine if a problem is coming from the main city sewer line and help you alert the utility company to have it fixed.

Posted on behalf of:
Seagraves Plumbing Sewer & Septic
4980 Plant Atkinson Rd SE
Smyrna, GA 30080
(494) 792-2221

How Does a Mound Septic System Work?

A traditional septic system uses a drain or leach field that filters the effluent that comes from the septic tank before it enters the ground water. However, not all areas can facilitate a drain field, either due to the type of soil or environmental concerns. An alternative to a drain field is a mound system, a filtering element that is created above ground. If you are considering adding a septic system or need to replace a drain field, here is what you need to know about mound septic systems.

Mound System Basics

Mound septic systems work similar to a traditional system but are a bit more complicated. As wastewater or effluent exits the tank, it is sent to a dosing chamber instead of a gravity distribution box. The dosing or pumping chamber regulates how much effluent is allowed to the enter the mound filter to ensure it is not overloaded. The mound is built with a network of pipes that transport wastewater from the dosing chamber. Wastewater filters down through the mound sand, removing contaminants before it reaches the ground surface underneath.

Mound systems offer a way to install a septic system in almost any area, even when a leach or drain field is not possible. They are more expensive to install, but if maintained correctly, they can last for decades. Although they do require a large mound to be in your yard, it can and should be planted with grass or small plants.

If you need to use a mound septic system, it is vital to stay on top of maintenance and use preventive septic care habits. Routine inspections and pumping the tank can help prevent issues that can damage your mound system and protect your investment.

Posted on behalf of:
Septic Service Pro, LLC
Peachtree Street NW
Atlanta, GA 30334
(678) 292-8728

Importance of Bacteria in a Septic System

Bacteria get a bad rap. Go down any cleaning product isle in a grocery store and you will see hundreds of products touting their ability to kill bacteria. While many types of bacteria can pose a health threat, they can be beneficial in the right circumstances. Those same tiny organisms that can make you ill are important to your septic system. Here’s why bacteria are vital to your septic system and how you can protect them.

Septic Systems Depend on Bacteria

When the waste from your home or business leaves the building and enters the holding tank, it needs to deteriorate. The septic tank is designed to allow solid wastes to breakdown into liquid. For this to occur, bacteria are required. Bacteria feed on organic solid waste, such as food, fecal matter and even paper products. As they attack the solids, they are dissolved into liquid. This liquid wastewater, called effluent, can then overflow to your mound or drain field to be further filtered before entering the ground water below.

Protecting Bacteria

Unfortunately, all those cleaners and other chemicals that kill bacteria can be detrimental to your septic system. If anti-bacterial cleansers, paint thinners and other harsh chemicals are put down the drain, they can kill the bacteria in your septic tank. Even antibiotic medications can kill septic bacteria. To protect the bacteria needed in your septic tank, avoid allowing these chemicals to go down your drains.

If your bacteria balance is not correct, your septic tank will fill quicker and require more frequent pumping. To maintain a healthy septic system, make sure to schedule routine inspections with a septic professional – they can check your bacteria balance and help you protect your septic system.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(678) 873-7934

Add a Basement Bathroom with an Ejector Pump

The basement in many homes is an under-utilized area. It may be used for a laundry room or storage, maybe a rec room for the kids. What if your basement could add more bedrooms and useable space to your home? Often the reason this area is not used more is the lack of a bathroom on this level of the home.

The reason many homes do not have a bathroom in the basement is a simple plumbing problem. Most plumbing is gravity driven; water and waste travels downward to the main sewer line with the use of gravity. In basements, waste needs to go up, so simple plumbing methods are not functional. The solution is an ejector pump that can propel water and waste up pipes to the main sewer line.

How an Ejector Pump Works

Ejector pumps are similar to sump pumps. They are automatically activated to pump waste water up and away from the home. With the installation of an ejector pump, you can add a half, three-quarter or full bath to your basement. The ejector pump will replace gravity to move the waste water from your bathroom fixtures. Most ejector pumps are electric require little maintenance to continue performing for many years.

Adding a bathroom to your basement can give you more living space for your family and inflate the value of your home. To learn more about how and where an ejector pump can be installed, contact your local plumbing company that offers ejector pump service. Your plumbing professionals can help you plan and install your ejector pump and bathroom fixtures to give your basement a new bathroom.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing Inc
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Septic Maintenance Basics for New Homeowners

If you are a new homeowner, you have a long list of maintenance items that come with your property purchase. Owning a home is a wise investment, but it also requires preventive care to help maintain the value and minimize unexpected repair costs. One system that may be new to you is a septic system. While it may seem daunting to be in charge of your own waste disposal system, if you keep up with maintenance, you may be able to avoid many costly repairs. Understanding the basic of septic maintenance is key to avoiding expensive septic repairs and replacements.

Avoiding Unnecessary Disposal

One of the main aspects of maintaining your septic system is reducing the waste that goes down your drains. Make water efficiency a priority, using water conservation fixtures and techniques. Also, the items that go down your drain impact your septic system. Practice keeping chemicals, grease, non-biodegradable items and solid food products out of your drains to reduce stress on your septic system.

Protect Your Underground Plumbing

The majority of your septic system is underground. You need to protect the tank, pipes, drain field and distribution box from damage. Keep vehicles and heavy machinery off your lawn or property where septic equipment resides underground. Also avoid planting trees too closely to septic pipes; root invasion can cause serious sewer pipe damage.

Routine Inspections, Pumping and Repairs

You do not need to do much of your septic maintenance on your own. Hire a septic professional to come out at least once a year to inspect your system, perform pumping when needed, and repair/replace components. This can prevent expensive septic emergencies and keep your system working reliably throughout the rest of the year. It is a wise investment and one that will help protect the value of your home.

Posted on behalf of:
Septic Service Pro, LLC
Peachtree Street NW
Atlanta, GA 30334
(678) 292-8728

When to Replace Sewer Lines Vs Repair

Your main sewer lines can last for decades – if you have an older home, your existing sewer lines may already be decades old. The good news is that many people never need to replace their sewer lines and many can be repaired when a problem arises. However, when should you invest in replacement versus a repair? Here are some circumstances when replacement may be a better option.

Multiple Repairs

If you have already needed to fix a cracked or leaking sewer line and are having more problems, it may be best to replace the pipe. Patching the pipe over and over can cost more in the long run than replacement, and it is a major inconvenience each time it occurs.

Poor Pipe Material

Many older sewer lines were made with cast iron, cement or other corroding material. These pipes were made to last, but they will also corrode over time. If you have a broken or corroded pipe, it is probably the beginning of a long line of problems. Replace with a more durable material to avoid future repairs.

Location Problems

Did your sewer line burst from tree root invasion or weight from vehicles? If your sewer is located in an area where it is susceptible to damage, it may be best to replace and move it to a better spot.

It can be a hefty investment to replace sewer lines, but it may be more cost effective than multiple repairs. Before you spend money on a repair, consider whether it may be best to complete a full replacement to avoid more expense and headaches down the road. Talk to your sewer professionals about your options.

Posted on behalf of:
Seagraves Plumbing Sewer & Septic
4980 Plant Atkinson Rd SE
Smyrna, GA 30080
(494) 792-2221

Pre-Holiday Tips for Your Septic System

Before you start planning your holiday parties and feasts, there is one area of your home that may need preparation. If you own a home with a septic system, it is important to consider how the holidays may affect your system. Extra cooking, cleaning and people all put stress on septic systems – you don’t want a septic failure to occur in the middle of your festivities. Here are some tips to limit stress on your septic and help prevent unexpected problems over the holidays.

Spread Out Water Use

Holiday preparations can mean extra loads of laundry, many dishwasher cycles, more toilet flushes and extra people taking showers. Excessive water use can impact your septic system. When possible, spread out water use. Try to stagger use of the dishwasher, showers and loads of laundry throughout the day; do as much as possible before your guests arrive.

Septic Tank Pumping and Maintenance

When was the last time your septic tank was pumped or inspected? If it has been a year or more, it can be worth the investment to schedule an inspection before your first big party or holiday event. A quick inspection and pumping if needed can prevent problems when you have friends and family to your home for the holidays.

Use Disposable Items

Many holiday traditions revolve around food. Every dish and fork you need to wash adds to the food, grease and water that goes down your drains. Consider using disposable plates, napkins and silverware to reduce the stress on your septic.

Give yourself of a holiday season free from septic emergencies. Plan and prepare to reduce stress on your septic system to minimize the chance of any backups or failures during the holidays.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(678) 873-7934

How Does a Sump Pit Work?

Too much water around your home’s foundation can cause settling, foundation damage and leaks into basements. The most common way to direct water away from a foundation is with the use of a sump pit that is connected to a drainage system. In most cases, a sump pump is used to reduce sump pit water levels when they become to high. Here is a basic description on how a sump pit works and why it is so important to maintain.

Sump pits are enclosures located below the area that needs protection from water accumulation. This can be under a crawl space in your home or located in the basement floor. Often, the sump pit is made from a 12-18” wide PVC pipe that is placed vertically in the ground with a concrete bottom. The PVC can be perforated or not – perforated pipe allows water to come in through drain rock around the pit.

To collect water, a drainage system can be used around the areas to be protected. Drain tile is often used to direct water to the sump pit, located around the foundation edges. Gravity brings the water to the lowest area to collect, which is the sump pit.

Importance of Sump Pumps

Sump pits work great to collect water and protect foundations. However, when water levels are high, they fill quickly. A sump pump is a submergible pump that goes inside the sump pit and activates by a float device when the pit is almost full, pumping the excess water out and away from the house to a storm drain or other drainage area.

Sump pits can effectively keep foundations protected from high water levels. However, the sump pump must be maintained to keep it working correctly. If you have a sump pit and pump, make sure to schedule routine service to ensure your sump pump is ready to work when needed.

Posted on behalf of:
Kiddco Plumbing Inc
Sterling, VA 20166
(703) 435-4441

Treatment Options for a Drain Field Biomat

When a thick, dark growth covers your drain field, this substance is called a biomat and it is not a good sign. Biomats occur when the drain field is not filtering effluent from the septic tank properly, resulting in an organic growth above ground. If your drain field is forming a biomat, this is a warning that your septic system needs service. Treating and servicing your septic system quickly can eliminate a biomat and may prevent a septic failure.

Schedule an Inspection and Service

First, call your local septic professional and schedule an inspection and service. If left unchecked, a biomat can destroy your septic system, requiring a new tank and drain field be installed. A maintenance service of tank pumping and inspecting your system may identify issues that can help treat your biomat.

Change Your Habits

It may not be a problem with your septic system that is causing your biomat; it may be how you are using your septic. Using excessive water, putting chemicals down the drain, using anti-bacterial soaps/cleansers and anti-biotic medications can all impact your septic system’s ability to breakdown solid waste. This can cause solid particles to flow out to your drain field, feeding the biomat that is growing and suffocating your system. Cut down on water use and be careful not to put items down the drain that can kill the good bacteria in your septic tank.

At the first signs of a biomat formation on your drain field, call your local septic service company and begin evaluating your septic use. Quick action on your part could save your septic system and save you thousands of dollars in replacement costs.

Posted on behalf of:
Metro Septic LLC
1210 N Tennessee St
Cartersville, GA 30120
(678) 873-7934