Septic System Maintenance
The most overlooked and undervalued utility in your home, but with proper care and maintenance, your septic system can continue to work for you for years.
Anything that goes down any of the drains in the house (toilets, showers, sinks, dishwashers, or laundry machines) can have significant impact on how well your septic system works and how long it works as well.
Why maintain your system?
Failing septic systems are expensive to repair or replace. The minimal amount of preventative maintenance that your system requires is very little in comparison to the cost of a new system. Typically, it can cost $3,000 to $10,000 to replace a failing system, compared to $275 to $525 average person per year costs to have a septic system routinely pumped, cleaned and inspected. Another reason to properly maintain your system is for the health of your family, your community, and the environment. When septic systems fail, inadequately treated household wastewater is released into the environment. Any contact with untreated human waste can pose a significant risk to public health. Untreated wastewater from failing septic systems can contaminate nearby wells, groundwater, and drinking water sources.
- Keep excess water off the leach field area.
- Direct surface water runoff away from the system.
- Limit activities that will compact leach field soils.
- Avoid driving across the area. Likewise, large animals, such as horses or cows, can cause compaction and reduce the effectiveness of the system.
- Be careful about what goes down the drain. Do not flush substances that do not readily decompose, including cat litter, feminine sanitary products, diapers, baby wipes or cigarette butts, to name a few.
- Avoid the use of hazardous cleaners and excessive amounts of grease or oil. Spread out your water use.
- Avoid using large amounts of water on any single day to prevent premature flushing of the tank.
- Minimize garbage disposal use.