Common Septic Tank Problems and How to Fix Them

Fixing Shower Drain Problems

Most households never come into contact with their septic tank unless something goes wrong. Your septic system is responsible for one of the most unpleasant yet most vital tasks in the home, and addressing any problems before they escalate is of utmost importance. It is extremely rare for a septic system to fail completely, and most issues can be fixed with a simple procedure. Never attempt to open your septic tank yourself or perform any repairs without the guidance of a trained specialist.

 

The Water from Your Shower or Tub Does Not Drain 

If water begins to back up in your shower or tub, it may be a sign that you have a blockage in the main sewage line that carries water out of your home. You may also see water rising from drainage holes in your basement. A plumber’s snake can be used to clear any minor blockages from sewage pipes. If only one drain in your home is backing up, then the blockage may be in that particular line and not in the main sewage line. If a snake does not remove the blockage, then you may want to check for any damage to the exterior pipes. Tree roots can occasionally cause damage to pipework, and any trees within 100 feet of a septic system should be removed for this reason.

 

Your Toilet Makes Gurgling Sounds

If your toilet makes a strange gurgling sound after flushing, this could signal a problem with your drainage field. The drainage field is the area where liquid is pumped out of the septic tank and into the surrounding soil. The septic tank separates solid waste from liquid and allows water to flow into the drainage field where bacteria and microorganisms breakdown any remaining particles. Drainage fields can become overloaded if you suddenly consume more water than usual. If you have recently had friends or relatives staying with you, then the problem will usually fix itself once you start using less water. If the problem persists, then you may need to expand your drainage field.

 

There is a Bad Smell in Your Home

Bad smells in the home usually indicate that that your septic tank is in need of emptying. Most tanks only need to be pumped once every few years depending on the size of the household. However, using a garbage disposal or installing a small septic tank will mean that you will have to empty it more often. Solid waste that cannot be broken down collects at the bottom of the tank. Once the waste fills around one third of the tank, it is time to call a professional septic tank repair company to empty it.

Always make sure you tackle any minor problems with your septic system as soon as they appear. Ignoring the problem may lead to total system failure which will cost a lot of time and money to repair. A faulty septic tank can also lead to bacteria and viruses such as hepatitis seeping out and polluting local groundwater, ponds and lakes.

Photo Credit: Forty Two.

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