Most people don’t know that it costs between $3,000 and $7,000 to replace the average septic tank. The good news is these septic tank maintenance tips are easy to implement and can extend the life of your septic system.
4 Septic Tank Maintenance Tips
There are some important and simple actions you can take to prolong the life of your septic tank and prevent expensive repairs. Read on to learn what you can do to keep your septic tank in good condition.
Inspect and Maintain your Septic System Regularly
One of the most important septic tank maintenance tips is to have your system inspected regularly. Inspecting and maintaining the tank can help it last longer and with fewer problems.
Your tank will need to be pumped on a regular schedule. There are 4 major factors that will influence the frequency of septic pumping:
- The size of the septic tank
- The total amount of wastewater that’s generated
- The volume of solids in the wastewater
- The size of the household
Limit Water Use
By conserving water, you can easily extend your septic tank’s lifespan. Using too much water is a common reason for septic system failure.
Some of the best ways to be water-wise include the following:
- Repair any leaky faucets and toilets as soon as possible. Even a slow leak can waste as much as 15 to 20 gallons of water per day.
- Spread out your laundry washing over the week and only wash full loads. Don’t run several loads on the same day.
- Try not to drain water from swimming pools or hot tubs into the septic system. This can drown out your drain field and kill bacteria.
- Don’t run washing machines and dishwashers at the same time.
- “Low flow” fixtures can be found at most hardware stores and will reduce the flow of water from your faucets and showerheads.
Dispose of Waste Properly
People put all sorts of things down the drain. If you have a septic tank, these items should not be flushed down the toilet or washed down the drain:
- Feminine hygiene products
- Dental floss
- Paper towels
- Baby wipes/wet wipes
- Cat litter
- Coffee grounds
- Cigarette butts
- Oil/cooking grease
- Gasoline, pesticides, paint thinners, antifreeze or any other household chemicals
Septic Tank Maintenance Tips for the Drainfield
One of the most important septic tank maintenance tips involves the drainfield. When wastewater leaves the septic tank, it’s discharged into the drainfield where it’s further treated by the soil. This is an important part of the whole septic system and there are a few things that will help keep it in good shape.
- Make sure that you never drive or park your car on your drainfield.
- Keep your drainfield away from things like sump pumps, roof drains, or other drainage systems for rainwater. The wastewater treatment process will be slowed considerably by any excess water.
- Plant trees a safe distance away from your drain field. You don’t want roots from the trees growing into your septic system. You can ask a septic service professional for advice on the proper distance, taking into account your landscape and your septic tank.