Is It Time to Convert Your Septic to Sewer?

Many homes that once only had the option of installing a septic system now have access to municipal sewer service. As city limits and neighborhoods expand, so do the sewer lines for providing sewage disposal and treatment for residential homes. If your home has a septic system, but sewer service is now available where you live, you may have considered converting. Here is what you need to know and some factors that could help you decide if it is time to convert from septic to sewer.

Cost, Convenience and Value

The top reason that homeowners want to make the switch to sewer service is convenience. No worrying about septic tanks, drain fields and maintenance – sewer service is much easier for homeowners than septic systems. However, that convenience comes at a cost. Not only does it cost a substantial amount of money to convert to sewer, you will also have a monthly sewer bill that you do not have with a septic system. However, even though it is a significant investment, converting to sewer can add value to your home.

Is the Time Right?

If your septic system is less than 20 years old and is working great, you may want to hold off on conversion, unless you are selling your home. You may want to discuss home value differences with a realtor between sewer and septic homes in your neighborhood if you are planning to sell in the next few years. It may be worth the investment if it will the cost will be covered with a higher sale price of your home.

If your septic system is 20 or more years old, or you have been having problems, it may be a great time to convert. Take the money you are spending on repairs and put it toward converting to a low-maintenance sewer service – talk to your local sewer/septic professional to learn more about the cost.

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

5 Warning Signs of a Failing Septic System

Septic systems can last for decades when properly maintained. Even when something goes wrong, it can usually be repaired. However, there can be a point of no return if you do not recognize the signs of trouble, requiring you to build a new drain field. Here are five signs your septic system is having issues to give you time to have it repaired before it fails.

  1. The grass is greener. If the vegetation over your drain field is very different than the surrounding area, you may have trouble starting. This can mean the waste water is not filtering down quick enough or too much solid waste is escaping the septic tank.
  2. Slow drains in your home. One slow drain in your home is a plumbing problem. When all your drains are slow, it is likely a sewer line or septic issue.
  3. Sewage odors. When a septic system is working properly, you should never smell sewage. If you have bad odors coming from your drains or you smell sewage outside, there is a problem.
  4. Wet spots or pooling water near your septic system or drain field. Wet areas, dirt erosion or pooling water anywhere near septic system pipes, tank or drain field can mean trouble.
  5. Bio-mat formation. One of the biggest alerts of a problem is a bio-mat forming over your drain field. This is a scum layer of biological material that is caused by too many solids entering your drain field.

If you notice any of these warning signs, do not hesitate to call your local septic service company to schedule a septic tank inspection. Often, the problem can be fixed, and you can avoid the expense of installing a new system.

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

Septic Tank Pumping FAQs

One of the main maintenance requirements of septic systems is ensuring the tank is emptied when needed. The problem is, many homeowners are uninformed about the tank pumping process, not knowing when or why it needs to be completed. Here are some frequently asked questions about septic tank pumping to give you a better understanding.

How Often Does a Septic Tank Needing Pumping?

Most tanks are designed to accommodate about 2-3 years of waste before they need to be pumped. However, this can vary depending on how many people are in the home and the size of the tank.

What Will Happen if the Tank Isn’t Pumped?

Sludge builds up in the tank, a thick layer of solid waste. When the level becomes too high, new waste water cannot settle long enough before exiting the tank into the drain field. Too much unfiltered waste can enter the drain field and could cause a septic backup or failure of your drain field.

How Do I Know When My Tank Needs to be Pumped?

It is difficult to check when a tank is becoming full on your own. This is why annual service by a septic company is important. They can check the level of your tank each year and inspect your system, letting you know when you should schedule your next pumping.

Is Pumping Expensive?

Each region and service are different for pricing; the cost includes emptying the tank and disposal, and larger tanks will cost more to pump. However, for an average-size tank, the cost usually runs around $300-$500.

If it has been more than two years since your last pumping, schedule routine septic service and pumping to ensure you do not wait too long to perform this important maintenance.

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

Learn the Basics About Your Septic System

There are many people who own houses with septic systems yet do not know the basics about how this system works. While there is little you need to do to maintain a septic system, you should know the basics on how it functions. This can help you prevent problems and identify issues when they first occur. Here is a basic overview of how septic systems with drain fields work.

From Drains to the Tank

Everything that goes down your household drains goes through your indoor plumbing and out to your main sewer line. This brings all the solid and water waste from your home to the septic tank. This journey is the first area problems can occur, such as clogs or issues with the sewer pipe.

Septic Tank Decomposition

The septic tank is where the solids from your waste are broken down. Enzymes and bacteria decompose solids, creating a layer of sludge and effluent, a liquid waste substance. As the tank fills, the effluent overflows out of the tank and a pump or gravity bring it to the distribution box for the drain field.

Filtering Waste Through a Drain Field

The last step in the septic system process is the drain field. The distribution box feeds several perforated pipes that let the effluent seep into the soil. The waste water is filtered as it goes through the soil and clean water joins the ground water below.

Knowing the path and parts of your septic system can help you identify problems. Keep up with routine maintenance which your local septic service company can do for you, including pumping your tank every few years and having annual inspections and service.

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

 

Protect Your Septic System with Water Conservation

There are many reasons to conserve water use, from saving money on your utility bills to protecting the environment. Another reason to reduce water waste is less wear and tear on your septic system. The more water that flows down your drains, the more work that your septic system must perform.

To reduce the stress on your septic system and to conserve water for many other excellent reasons, there are some simple changes you can make in your home. Here are a few tips on how to minimize the water waste in your home to protect your septic system:

  • Switch to low-flow water fixtures. Wherever possible, upgrade to low-flow water fixtures to save gallons of water waste a day. Switch to water-conservation fixtures for your shower head, faucets, toilet and other fixtures/appliances.
  • Shut off the water. Do not let water flow down the drain for no reason. Shut off the water when brushing your teeth, fill the sink to rinse dishes instead of keeping the water on, and dump gray water outside instead of putting it down the drain.
  • Shorten showers. One of the biggest uses of water is daily showers. Good hygiene for your family is important, but you can put a limit on shower time to reduce the waste. Try shutting off the water while you lather up and then rinse; this can save gallons of water a day.

Reducing water use is one way to make your septic system last longer. Protecting it from excessive wear and tear and keeping up with regular maintenance from your local septic service company can help add years to the life of your system.

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

Do You Know Where to Find Your Septic Tank Lid?

It is not uncommon for a homeowner to not know where to find their septic tank lid, especially on a recently purchased home. In many cases, the lid is covered in dirt and grass, not easy to locate without knowing where it is positioned. You should know where your septic tank lid is to facilitate easy access for your septic service crews when they need to pump your tank or perform routine maintenance. Here are some tips to find your septic tank lid before your next schedule service.

  • Find the septic diagram. Did you receive any paperwork, diagrams or blueprints from the previous owners when you bought your home? When a septic system is installed, there is usually a diagram given to the homeowners that outlines the septic system, including the tank and lid location. Look through your paperwork and see if they gave you a septic diagram.
  • Look for conspicuous areas in the yard. If you do not have a diagram, or still are not quite sure where the lid is located, look for the lid where you think could be positioned. There may be a 2-3-foot wide rise or indentation in the yard that could be hiding your tank lid.
  • Follow the pipes. Where does your main sewer line leave the house and in what direction? This can help you find the area and look for an indicator of a buried tank lid.

If you cannot find your septic tank lid, do not worry. Your local septic service professionals will help you locate the septic tank and its lid, but it can save time and ensure they have the right access to find it before they arrive.

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

Spring Planting and Your Septic System

Spring is a great time to update your landscaping. Adding new trees, shrubs and flower gardens can add beauty and value to your home. However, before you grab your shovel and rake to begin your spring planting, consider where you plan to add new foliage and how it could impact your septic system.

Roots and Septic Pipes

One of the biggest hazards to sewer pipes in your yard is the roots of trees searching for moisture. Tree roots can grow tens of feet out from a base of a tree trunk to collect water. If sewer pipes are nearby, tree roots will try to infiltrate them to get to the tempting moisture inside.

To protect your sewer pipes from expensive damage and root clogs, plan carefully when planting new trees. You will want to keep trees far way from your septic pipes to prevent problems down the road as they get larger.

Plants and Drain Fields

Another area to avoid when planting this spring is your drain field. The smaller pipes for your drain field are close to the surface and can easily be impacted plant roots, even smaller shrubs and bushes. Your drain field should only be covered with grass, no other plants, to prevent damage to this crucial component of your septic system.

Keep in mind how your landscaping can impact your septic system. If you have issues with your septic pipes or drain field, it can be caused by the plants and trees in your yard. Your local septic service can investigate the problem and fix any issue your beautiful trees and plants cause with your pipes and drain field.

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

Questions to Ask When You Schedule Your First Septic Pumping

Is it time to schedule your first septic tank pumping? Before you call the first septic professional you come across on Google or in a business listing, there are some things to consider. First, you want to make sure you hire a licensed, trusted professional with a excellent reputation in your area. Secondly, there are some questions you should ask when scheduling your pumping service. Here are answers you need to ensure your pumping service goes smoothly.

What is the cost and what does it include?

There are some septic companies that have a flat fee that includes everything – the pumping, inspection and disposal. Others may use separate fees for each service. One way is not necessarily better than the other, but you want to know exactly what to expect and what is covered in the quoted price.

What type of access do you need?

It can save time and trouble to make sure there is room for the septic tank truck to park at your home. Ask how close they need to be to your tank and how much room they need.

How long will the service take?

Make sure you know how long to expect your septic contractor to spend cleaning your septic tank. A decision maker for the home should be present in case there are any repairs or issues that need to be resolved.

Septic pumping service is usually needed every 2-3 years for most homes, depending on the size of the tank and the amount of waste created in the home. If you know what to expect by asking a few questions, this service can go smoothly and quickly.

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

What is a Sludge Check?

When you have a septic system, keeping an eye on your septic tank is vital to prevent overflow and backups. Unfortunately, checking the level of your septic tank is not an easy task. There are deadly fumes in your septic tank and accessing the inside is a chore. Septic professionals are the best option to keep an eye on your septic tank levels, including a sludge check.

Sludge, when referring to a septic tank, is the layer of solid waste residue that forms inside your septic tank. This is solid waste that has been semi-dissolved, but it still a thick substance that should not be distributed to your drain field. During regular service, septic professional check the sludge level to determine if your septic tank needs to be pumped. This sludge check should be performed at least once a year to ensure it does not reach dangerous levels.

In most cases, if the sludge check reveals the tank is approaching the two-thirds level of fullness, it is time to schedule a septic pumping. This means the sludge is filling more than half the tank and will need to be removed before it backups into the sewer lines or overflows into the drain field. Sludge will not breakdown and can ruin a drain field. It is important to keep up with regular sludge checks and other maintenance to prevent septic failures.

If it has been over a year since you had your septic system serviced and a sludge check performed, it is time to call your local septic service professional. They can safely check the level of sludge in your septic tank and perform a pumping if needed.

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

Is it a Septic Problem?

Your plumbing and septic system are connected, but there is a difference between a plumbing issue and a septic problem. Your plumbing refers to the pipes and water system inside the house, while your septic system involves waste pipes, your septic tank and drain field. However, both can cause drain issues and sewer backups in your home. How do you know when you just have a clogged drain or if it’s a septic problem?

When a drain or pipe is clogged in your plumbing, it is usually a localized issue. If your toilet or kitchen sink drain is clogged, only those fixtures are affected. Your toilet can overflow due to a clog, but the bathroom sink and shower will still drain. These are clogs in the smaller pipes. Larger plumbing waste pipes can get clogged, but they will still usually only affect one area of the house, not all drains.

A septic backup will affect all drains in your home, usually the ones closest to the main sewer drain pipe first. This means drains in your basement or first floor are most likely to be the first to drain slower. If there is a septic backup, eventually all drains in the home will become slow and may begin not draining at all, or sewage may come up through the drains.

Any sewer backup in your home is a good reason to call a plumber. However, if you have what appears to be a septic backup, you want to call a septic professional. Your septic tank could be full or you may be experiencing a septic failure. Your local septic professional can perform an inspection and figure out the problem and propose a solution.

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