septic tank owners guide by SepticTankBacteria.com
Undeniable Proof That You Need a septic tank owner’s guide had to be written. Many great minds in the septic industry are sadly passing away and with every passing, we lose their knowledge. This had to be written down for future generations of septic tank owners and operators.
Septic System Owner’s Guide
Many others have written tips about the septic systems who sadly have limited knowledge in the septic industry and do not have the keen insight first-hand knowledge of the actual workings of a septic system but read what others wrote who never saw, serviced, troubleshoot or even located a septic system. Does it make them uneducated? No. With Undeniable Proof That You Need our septic tank owner’s guide,We hope to help your septic system last longer and operate cleaner.
I promise you that we will not “shop Talk” you but make it easy to understand how a septic system operates. Undeniable Proof That You Need a septic tank owner’s guide was written to help you spot problems before they start.
With our clients who purchase our septic tank bacteria products on our website SepticTankBacteria.com, We offer our 40 plus years of septic system installs, troubleshooting to you name it, To help them pick the best product for their needs. 40 plus years we wear dickie work uniforms and get our hands dirty. We do not just sit in a nice climate control office and sell bacteria. We actually see septic systems every day.
The main septic tank line leaving your home.
The main septic tank line leaving your home carries the waste from your toilets, sinks, tubs, showers, and all drains to your septic tank. Generally, this waste line can be 3 inches and on up.
88% of the septic waste line is are a 4-inch size. The size of your septic waste line leaving your home can even be bigger depending on the amount of waste it has to handle, how many people will be living there full time, the number of rooms in the home or building.
This main septic tank waste line leaving your home or building can be made of PVC, Cast Iron Pipe to even metal both galvanized and non-galvanized metal pipe. Yes, we have excavated up 4 inches, 5 inches, 6 inches to 8 inches non galvanized pipe that rotted and caused a root blockage. Metal pipe underground tends to rot in spots due to the moisture in the ground.
SDR PVC Septic Waste Line Pipe:
PVC pipe takes many many years to rot. That is why most septic installers use PVC pipe, Both The green pipe called thin-wall SDR-35 to the common heavier Schedule 40 white PVC pipe.
SDR-35 Green Sewer Pipe:
The green color of the SDR-35 sewer pipe is there for a reason. Green is the international color of sewer underground. So if a contractor is excavating and finds a green pipe, Just by looking at the pipe you can guess it’s a sewer pipe BUT that is not always the case. If you are digging and you find a pipe underground, You must call again for a Utility Mark Out. It is required before any digging, You would know to proceed with caution or stop and call for another Utility Mark Out. You never know what you will find digging!
Blue Brute Sewer Pipe:
There is a Blue colored pipe that is extra heavy PVC called “Brute”. This pipe was designed for parking lots where heavy traffic will be. Because of Brute’s extra-duty design, It will take a lot to crush the pipe from a weighted item like a dump truck, car, payloaders, etc. The brute pipe is not common in homeowner septic installs. We have used it in homes where heavy traffic may be a problem.
The Septic Tank: Mother Nature’s gift to the environment!
Septic tank systems are a gift from Mother Nature herself when operating like it was designed to. A septic tank is a giant filter. Think of it like a water filter, oil filter, air conditioner filter to even the screens on your home! A septic tank will filter out what is drained or flushed.
A Septic Tank has a few important jobs………….
A septic tank has a few important jobs:
- To stop solids from reaching the drain field.
- Stop the flow of wastewater “Running” thru a septic tank and flooding out the drain field.
- To hold the solids so the septic tank bacteria can break it down and digest it.
Septic tanks are generally rectangular and concrete but just like the times that have changed, So have septic tanks. There are round “Poly” septic tanks that are lightweight and when up to operating level, can be strong.
Let’s get back to Concrete septic tanks. They are the most common in the ground in the United States. Almost 96 % of Septic Tanks are concrete. “Poly” septic tanks are gaining in popularity.
What’s inside a septic tank?
Before we look inside a septic tank, Let’s look on the outside first. In the above picture we show our backhoe holding a septic tank. On the top are 2 openings where septic tank covers go. They are important to have so it’s easy to service, inspect or pump a septic tank. Septic tank covers must be raised to grade and always be easy to find and never covered up. Now to the inside of a septic tank.
The above picture taken by SepticTankBacteria.com, From left to right shows a 4-inch main septic drain line made of SDR-35 coming from the home, A cleanout that after backfill we cut to grade and placed a round irrigation valve box cover on top of it, Into an elbow and into the septic tank.
Inside the first cover of the septic tank shows a baffle then a open space. We had to install a baffle due to the pitch of the main septic line. We did not want to have the waste travel thru the septic tank like a river after a massive rain to the septic tank outlet filter tee. In the second septic manhole, you do not see a 4 inch Tee where we install a Septic Filter in it.
Why did we set up this septic tank installation this way?
We set up this septic tank installation this way because of the home’s location, The site elevation, and where the rest of the new septic system was going to be installed for maxim septic system operation.
Septic Tank and Cesspools……
We actually installed a total of 3 septic tanks in series on this septic system with septic filters leaving each septic tank. We wanted to keep the drain field as clean as possible and to give the drain field a rest when the 3 septic tanks are pumped, The septic drain field and cesspool will dry out also.
Yes, I just said cesspool. We installed a very large cesspool before the septic drain field. Cesspools are allowed in this county. We installed it just after the last septic tank. The drain field also got a septic filter when it left the cesspool.
Every cover was raised to grade for easy troubleshooting if there is a problem. We do not think there will be a problem If they still add septic tank bacteria from us. Not the hardware store or big box store stuff but actually quality septic tank bacteria purchased from us.
Septic Drain Fields:
Septic tank drain fields distribute the wastewater that has been filtered thru a septic tank first. The well-kept the septic tank, The better the drain field will be and the easier to operate like it was designed.
This is why a septic tank filter and quality septic tank bacteria are very important in your septic maintenance plan.
Mother Nature has her plans with every septic drain field, And that is to filter the wastewater for the last time before it gets returned to the Earth to be used again somewhere.
Septic Drain Field BioMat:
Septic drain field biomat is a gift from Mother Nature. After a new drain field installation and wastewater makes its way thru the septic tank and into the drain field, It will slowly develop around the drain field pipe holes.
88% of all septic drain fields after 5 years have biomat growing around them. A properly designed, sized, installed with pumping every 2-3 years, With inspections every year to catch problems early and the use of our septic tank bacteria, You can control the growth of biomat.
Another way to control the growth of biomat is having 2 or more septic drain fields and a directional valve to switch wastewater from one drain field to another.
Septic Biomat Control:
Another way to control the biomat around a septic drain field is the use of the septic bacteria we offer and some specialized equipment some septic contractors have. This procedure will clean up the septic drain pipe and digest scum that is blocking the normal operation of your system. This procedure is all-natural!
Why murder Mother Nature?
There are companies out there whose website, advertising, and used car salesman say their machinal product will “murder” the Biomat that Mother Nature uses as a filter to keep the environment cleaner.
If you “Murder” the Biomat, You are helping to destroy the environment. Biomat is part of the last treatment process of septic waste. Biomat is needed in all onsite septic systems to keep the environment as natural as possible.
If you have a backing up problem due to the Biomat, Your system was not designed correctly for its use. Problems tend to start when people sell Homes and more people live inside the homes than what the system was designed for. Why murder Mother Nature?
Septic tank bacteria’s role in septic maintenance.
Yes, even after a well-thought-out and planned septic system install, They will need a quality septic tank bacteria product purchased from us to help it keep as clean as possible and full of quality septic bacteria.
Every septic system is better when septic tank bacteria is used every month.
Just like pumping every 2 to 3 years, All septic tanks work better with added septic tank bacteria products purchased from us. Septic bacteria products are part of a healthy working septic drain field system and help protect it from failure if the system was installed correctly and sized for the home’s needs.
Our studies show that the septic systems we take care of that use our septic tank bacteria every month, Receive a 5 – 15 % increase in time between septic pumpings, and the septic system is just cleaner and that makes the system last longer.
Hydrogen Sulfide, The black scum under non-breathing septic systems is a killer of septic bacteria in septic systems. It grows and rots out concrete above and below the wastewater.
Hydrogen Sulfide is a very powerful acid.
Septic systems that have airflow all year long will have less of this septic tank killer and if you use our septic tank bacteria, You have even less!
All Septic Systems Must Breathe…….
All septic systems must breathe. I can not hammer this point hard enough. All cleanouts, manholes to the end of a septic leach field, Must be raised to grade and above to allow the free flow of air in the system. Just doing this alone will help your septic system last longer. Air will circulate inside the septic system and remove some of the hydrogen sulfide and send air into your drain field to help dry it out.
If your septic install contractor will not raise all your covers and clean outs for you, I would ask myself what are they hiding? No County or Local Government inspections before they backfill? What are they hiding? If your contractor raises every cleanout or inspection port to grade and calls for a county inspection for a permit and the county worker gives the installer a hard time about installing a system that is easy to inspect, Let the permit inspector know you as the homeowner requested it for environmental reasons.
Septic Tank Maintenance
Now onto septic tank maintenance. Let me start with when not to wait till to get your septic tank serviced and yes I have seen all of this happen and all the excuses that generally follow.
- Do not wait till your toilet does not flush to get your septic tank serviced. If you wait this long and the problem is your clogged up septic tank, This is not a service but an emergency pumping to get your toilet flushing.
This also means that the septic pumper contractor will have to come back and spend many hours cleaning up your septic system and this will get expensive.
Think of this as the oil in your car. If you only change your oil when your engine blows up, Waiting till your engine blows is not the warning light to tell you to change the oil. It is an engine failure and the engine must be replaced. If you wait till septic failure before you service the system, You are replacing the system with a new septic system.
Once A Year Septic Inspections.
Do: Have your septic system inspected once a year to catch problems before they become expensive problems. Many expensive problems can be caught early enough to keep them from not being expensive.
On all of our septic systems we installed and those that we did not install but meet our standards for septic installation, We find a 30-50 percent increase in performance when managed by us.
Once a year, Every year of the life of the waste system, Have your septic cleaning contractor safely lift all clean out and covers and inspect the septic baffles, Filters to the thickness of the concrete itself. Take a measurement of the Scum and Sledge levels of the tank and see if they are within proper operating requirements.
ProTip: Your septic tank is not your garbage can, so do not treat it that way.
The D Box:
2. The D Box, Also known as the distribution box is located just after your septic tank and before your drain field. Check to see if the d box settled with a level. Check for signs of a stoppage, cracked or broken pipe, roots growing in, and see if any animals are making a home in there.
Have somebody flush the toilet and wait to see the wastewater flow thru the d box and if it stops in the d box, ponds in the d box, or just flows out to the drain field. There should be no standing water in the d box!
Check for crushed-looking pipe inside the D Box. Look where the pipes come in with contact with the concrete d box itself. If they look oblong and not brand new round, You may have had a car drive over it and crushed pipe you can not see with just your eyes only. You should never ever drive over your septic system no matter where it is. No excuses!
Septic tank drain field inspection.
Since your drain field is below ground level, We will start with an above-ground visual inspection. Look for above ground noticeable damage to the leach field by cars, Animals, Tree roots to ponding, and signs of septic leach field failure. In some areas, The frost line can move pipes upward and poke them out of the ground.
Any damage has to be fixed as soon as possible for the system to work correctly. If you have inspection ports on the end of your leach field, Check them to make sure they are not root bound or holding water. Air must circulate out of them and not wastewater!
If your septic contractor has a small push sewer camera, Have them inspect each leg of the leach field.
An educated septic tank owner is a smart consumer…………
Now, do you see why Undeniable Proof That You Need our septic tank owner’s guide had to be written? We just scratched the septic tank surface with the above information! This was written to be just a basic guide for a homeowner who owns a septic tank system and who may have questions about its operation of it.
An educated septic tank owner is a smart consumer. I hope I educated you a little bit. I hope with all this information you can weed out the good honest septic contractors from the rest.
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