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Septic Tanks

Let Washington DC Plumbers Care For Your Septic Tanks

Plumbers 911 is the One Call to Make for Septic Repairs and Maintenance

Septic Tanks | Washington DC PlumbersThe septic tank is a mysterious thing for most homeowners. We know what it does and that it’s really important, but less about the ins and outs of how it actually works, and how to make sure it’s doing its job correctly, than other parts of the home plumbing system.

That’s probably because it’s hidden conveniently underground, so it’s harder to access and easy to forget about. Most days, we probably don’t think about our septic tanks at all… until there’s a problem, and it’s too late.

Maybe you’ve found this page in order to educate yourself a bit more about your septic system so that you can hopefully prevent an emergency situation. Or maybe something’s gone wrong and you need urgent help with your septic tank. Either way, read on for all the answers.

When you’re done, consider picking up the phone and giving Plumbers 911 Washington DC a call. We’re a full-service plumbing company with a whole network of plumbers in the area, and we’re ready to help you with all your septic tank needs, whether the project is big or small.

How a Septic Tank Works

Your septic tank is basically one large filter, through which all the wastewater from your household runs. This includes water from all your household appliances, such as your dishwasher and washing machine, as well was water from sinks, toilets, and showers. After wastewater passes through your septic tank, it is dispersed through the drain field, a small network of pipes that allows the filtered water to gradually enter back into the soil. The soil in your lawn then acts as the final purification system for the water used in your home.

The goal of your septic tank is to filter out impurities from your wastewater, and for bacteria in your septic tank to help this waste decompose. There are two main kinds of waste, and your septic tank helps to separate them out. Solid wastes will settle to the bottom of the tank, and scum, such as discarded oils, will rise to the top.

The bacteria living in your septic tank will cause some of the solid waste and scum to decompose over time. However, some of this waste will inevitably remain behind. If too much waste buildup remains in your tank, it can overflow, causing huge problems. That’s why you should make sure your septic tank is pumped at regular intervals.

When to Pump Your Septic Tank

Most home septic systems require your tank to be pumped every three to five years, or when the waste solids in your tank fill a quarter to one-third of your tank. This time period can vary depending on how much water you use in your home. If you have a large family, with a large number of people regularly using your plumbing system, that may mean your septic tank will require more frequent pumping.

It’s a good idea to have your tank inspected once a year so that an expert can make sure everything is running smoothly. Plumbers 911 Washington DC always has plumbers available in your immediate area for septic tank inspections and much more.

Increasing the Life of Your Septic Tank

Septic Tanks | Washington DC PlumberWith proper care and maintenance, as with all of the plumbing in your home, a septic tank can remain healthy and operational for a very long time. Here are some steps you can take to increase the longevity of your septic tank:

DO try to minimize your use of water as much as possible. It’s good for your septic tank, and it’s good for the environment, too! This can be as simple as not leaving the water running, but you can also install ‘low-flow’ fixtures on faucets to prevent overuse of water. Also, try not to run water-dependent appliances, such as the washing machine and the dishwasher, at the same time.

DON’T overtax your system by using it as a disposal system. This means limiting the use of your garbage disposal (or, even better, don’t use one at all), and not putting anything down your toilet except for toilet paper. Most importantly, dispose of hazardous materials such as paint and lawn chemicals.

DO plant grass over your septic tank. Definitely avoid paving over your septic tank with concrete or asphalt.

DON’T park on your septic tank, or allow vehicles to drive across your septic tank.

DO check labels to make sure that the soap and toilet paper you use have been deemed ‘septic-safe.’

DON’T rely on flush septic cleaners. These can be a band aid solution when your septic tank really needs to be pumped.

DO contact a trained professional for all your necessary septic tank maintenance.
Septic Repairs and Maintenance

Always keep an eye out for warning signs that your septic tank may need maintenance and repair. These signs include:

  • Unusual odors in the area of your septic tank.
  • Damp ground or unusual plant growth around the drain field.
  • In the interior of your home, plumbing backups or unusual sounds.
  • Slow drainage of any of your plumbing appliances or fixtures.These warning signs may just indicate that it’s time for your septic tank to be pumped, or they could indicate a more serious problem.

Septic systems are delicate, so it’s best to leave septic-system related projects to the pros. We’ll make sure that all the work done on your system is to the highest standard, and will keep your system in good operation for many years to come.

Local Washington DC plumbers are ready to address all your septic system needs and beyond! All of our plumbers are fully licensed and trained to the highest standards and on the most up-to-date technologies. Our technicians are available 24-7 for both emergency and non-emergency plumbing needs. We look forward to helping you with all of your septic repair and maintenance needs.