In most suburban and city homes, the sewage is normally collected via a sewer system and transported into a municipal sewer treatment plant. Unfortunately, homes in remote regions and small towns don’t have access to the municipal sewer system. Hence, they rely on septic tanks for wastewater treatment. A properly functioning sewer system acts as an organic machine. It breaks down the wastes from a household and later distributes the thoroughly processed effluent into a designated drainage field at your home.
When the septic system is properly working, it should be able to remove and dispose of all the sewer wastes from your home. However, if it runs into an issue, or your septic tank bursts, the wastes within might contaminate ground and surface water. Additionally, it will make your yard undesirable. Hence, you should contact an emergency plumber in Katy, TX, to address the issue.
A burst septic tank might result in various other issues. The bacteria in the septic tank might also result in sanitation-related diseases and other health complications occasioned by the sewer gas inhalation. Therefore, any homeowner must understand the working of a septic tank, how they can maintain it, and what to do whenever it bursts.
How Does a Septic Tank Work?
Your home’s septic tank has been designed in a way that allows it to separate and later process the wastes. It does this by converting the blackwater and gray water produced by various activities at your home into a lesser contaminated liquid. The liquid can then be released into the environment without fearing environmental or health hazards.
Many factors impact the size of a septic tank, including the size of the bathrooms. However, the septic tank should hold the solid wastes for a minimum of three years. Then, you can schedule pumping or cleaning after every three years to avert various septic tank issues. Whenever the bacteria within the septic tank dies or is affected by chemical wastes, it should be replenished to ensure the tank’s efficiency in breaking down the waste remains.
In some homes, the septic system is passive instead of active. A passive septic system consists of a septic tank, gravity drain field, and inlet piping. The wastewater flowing from your bathroom washing machine, toilet, bathroom, or other appliances or fixtures directly flows into the septic tank through an inlet pipe. The size of a septic tank determines the minimum volume of water the tank can hold without getting dry. It also determines the number of anaerobic bacteria available to feed on the solid organic wastes in the wastewater.
Wastewater must stay within the septic tank for a specified duration or holding time, normally about 48 hours. This allows the bacteria to decompose or break down the solids and reduce their strength by forty percent. However, the holding time varies based on the wastewater flow at your home. The wastewater then leaves the septic tank when it reaches a concentration of about sixty percent. However, it still has some anaerobic bacteria, which continue treating the water in the drain field before it is finally released into the environment. That is why plumbers advise that you replenish the bacteria after some time for continued activity.
How to Manage Septic System Issues
Septic system issues normally arise because of the damage to your septic tank or leaks. The septic issues are, however, relatively easy for a plumber or a homeowner to detect because of the foul odor caused by the sewer gasses when they escape from the sewer system. Other septic issues include backing up sewer, overflowing toilets, stagnating water surrounding the septic tank, abnormally lush vegetation surrounding the septic tank, and a soggy yard.
All the signs above indicate that the septic tank is full to the extent that it cannot handle any extra waste. The septic issues aren’t necessarily because of an old system. Even the newer septic systems are prone to failure because of the changes in wastewater flow whenever there is a new homeowner or house occupant. Therefore, you should reach out to a plumber to come and assess the situation and resolve it fully. You are advised to have the professional inspect the sewer line and the septic system before purchasing the new home in Katy, TX. Based on their assessment, the plumber might recommend:
Pumping the Septic Tank
Whenever the septic tank fills and you notice that the drains at the lowest levels of your house, such as the basement, are backing up, you should have a plumber pump the wastewater from the tank to temporarily resolve the issue. After pumping, the professional will inspect the tank to determine why the sewer isn’t flowing naturally.
The main reason might be a blockage within the drain lines between the septic tank and your home or a high groundwater level. The professional will measure the groundwater within 10ft of the tan & 20ft of the drainage field to determine the correct volume of the wastewater to remove from the septic tank. Removing too much water might make the tank start floating upwards because of the groundwater and pressure, damaging the connected piping.
Rerouting Clear Wastewater
Normally, the runoff from your roof and any other clear water, such as foundation drains, will be rerouted to a separate seepage pit or drain. This protects the drain field and septic tank from overloading. If plumbing and building codes allow, the plumber will reroute the wastewater from your washing machine and other appliances to the said drains.
New Drain Field and Cleaning the Septic Tank
Sometimes, the septic tank might burst rather than backing up into your Katy, TX home, making the wastes escape via the drain field outlet pipes and onto the exteriors of your home. If this is the case, the plumbing professional might recommend septic cleaning or installing a new drain field.
Replacement of the Septic Tank
Whenever the septic tank bursts and wastes into the ground, the groundwater might get contaminated, resulting in environmental and health issues. The plumber might recommend septic tank replacement.
If you have a septic system at your home, you should leave nothing to chance to ensure that it operates at the highest levels. Unfortunately, even with meticulous maintenance, the tank can still run into a plumbing issue. Whenever this happens, you should have it inspected and the issue fixed by a professional plumber. Do you need septic system repair, installation, inspection, or maintenance services? Never hesitate to contact us at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain of West Houston.