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7 Major Causes of Septic Tank Failure

Plumbermascot Septic Tank

If you constantly receive foul and unsightly visitors from your commode or if there is a lingering atrocious smell in your home, such problems may indicate septic tank failure. Proper-functioning septic systems are responsible for treating sewage waste in a safe and sanitary manner.
Whatever reason that provokes the breakdown of septic tank, this problem should be addressed immediately. If they are left dysfunctional for a long time, it will arise health and environmental concerns. Read on below to know the usual causes of septic system failure.

1. Accumulation of Solids in the Septic Tank

The septic tank separates the solid wastes at the bottom part from the water particles on top. If homeowners do not empty the accumulated solid particles even just once a year, it will create obstructions within the inlet pipes – forming stubborn clog. In such case, slow drainage and sewer backups will manifest. Contact your trusted plumbers to pump out your tanks and save your plumbing system.

2. Broken Drain Lines

Failing septic tanks commonly entail slow drains. You will notice that the liquids do not easily run off down your bathroom and toilet drains. Typically, the checking of the septic tank follows after you detect such plumbing emergency. However, if you observe that the water level inside the tank is adequate, the source of the problem can be narrowed down to broken or collapsed pipes. You will need to hire a professional plumber to make necessary repairs or replacements. Do not confidently tweak your septic tanks since you may instigate further damage.

3. Driving and Parking Over a Septic System

Carefully plan your driveways and parking areas and make sure the vehicles that pass on them do not constrain the operations of your septic system. Driving and parking over your underground plumbing can disturb, damage, and collapse your septic tank, sewer pipes and other components. This will ultimately call for expensive digging and repair. Additionally, having even the slightest vehicular activity on your leach field will compress the soil, making the effluent treatment inefficient.

4. Lack of Maintenance

You should not just confine routine maintenance in visible plumbing fixtures such as taps, sinks and toilets. Make sure to prioritise the emptying and pumping out of your septic tanks, at least once a year. Usually, tanks can only accommodate wastes that are good for 12 months. If tank wastes are not periodically discharged, the scum may empty itself into the soakaway soil, blocking the space of air allotted for surface water drainage. This results to the failure of water and liquid wastes to soak away.

5. Tree roots

Nature is highly responsible for decomposing all the biodegradable wastes, thanks to the bacteria and other organisms. Ironically, nature can also mess with our septic systems. Tree root invasions can impede the optimum capacity of your plumbing system, such as the inlet pipes. Aged and corroded pipes having cracks are especially penetrable to these roots. Porous clay pipes are also prone to such damage.

The usual solution for root infestation is the slashing down of intrusive roots through rooter machines or hydro jetters. There are also environment-friendly root killers sold in the market. However, the problems will present it again in the future since the tree roots will continue to grow. To permanently save your pipes from this notorious plumbing issue, you may have to remove the tree near your sewer lines. Do not even leave the tree stump, get rid of the deepest roots as much as you can. Moreover, homeowners should observe careful landscape planting. Your botanical features should be far away from the sewer lines and make sure to plant sewer-safe trees and vegetation only.

6. Non-biodegradable Waste

Due to indiscriminate flushing and draining, some homeowners can lead non-biodegradable objects, such as plastic materials, to get into the tank. Some other cloggers include feminine products, cigarettes, paper and excess kitchen grease. Since these items do not disintegrate and degrade, they can occupy a considerable space in your tank, increasing the water level within and ultimately shortening the length of time before it has to be pumped out. Follow proper drain disposal and maintenance since you can consequently fend off septic issues also.

7. Chemicals and Salt

When there is an excessive use of household chemicals, the friendly bacteria in the septic system responsible for sewage treatment will be killed. Salts that come from faulty water softener also contribute to the problem. Make sure not to dispose antifreeze, paint, and pesticides among other harsh substances down the drain. Also use cleaners and detergents moderately.

A septic system can have a lifespan of 20 or more years. Observe proper maintenance and you can make the most out of your septic system’s serviceability.