As is the case with any septic tank any water that you use inside your home will drain into your septic system, usually through a small inlet at the top of the tank. Over time the obvious occurs – and the tank will begin to fill up. Once it reaches a certain level, your tank will begin to release water into an area commonly known as the drain field. The fluid won’t smell and will be summarily cleaned by the soil around your tank.
However, problems arise when the pipe supplying the water to the drain field gets backed up. This will lead to wastewater being backed up through your system and when this happens, you’ll need to take action so you can avoid any damage to your property and any costly repairs associated with the incident.
How to identify a clog
In the early stages of a septic tank clog, it’ll seem very similar to a clogged pipe in your home. Water might drain a little bit more slowly, you might hear some gurgling sounds and the like. The key difference to look for though – is the number of fixtures impacted.
If you’re only seeing this issue with one or two sinks, toilets or tubs – it might be a simple pipe blockage. However, if all of your fixtures are affected, then it’s highly likely that you have an issue with your septic tank. They’ll usually reveal themselves in the lower levels of your house and then you’ll begin to experience issues upstairs. So if you’re noticing something wrong in your kitchen, it’s probably advisable to head down to your basement to see how fixtures are working down there.
What to do about it
Blocked pipes are a pretty easy fix – a little vinegar and baking soda can do the trick. Let it sit for a few hours and then liberally flush it with hot water. Don’t use chemical drain cleaners as this can eliminate a lot of the beneficial bacteria in your septic tank and take a bad problem and make it far worse.
Ultimately – the best way to avoid a septic tank issue – is to get your system pumped regularly. Most tank providers will provide ongoing maintenance programs for a small fee that will include this service and trust us when we tell you – compared to the price of a catastrophic repair, the ongoing maintenance fee is nominal.
If you suspect that you have a blocked tank, feel free to give us a call today and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation. Until then, good luck!