SEPTIC SYSTEM MAINTENANCE BEST PRACTICES
When you neglect the health of your septic system, you run the risk of a failed system. Septic systems are costly to repair or replace, and a failed system can decrease property values. For this reason, it is important follow a few simple steps, to ensure your septic system will have a long, productive life.
Maintain your septic system regularly according to the operation and maintenance plan provided at the time of installation. Be sure to schedule a pump out when the sludge depth exceeds 1/3 of the tank (typically every 3- 5 years).
Locate your septic tank and drain field so that you can be prepared. Unsure of the location? Follow this link for information about how you can locate your septic system. If your system has lids and'/or access points visible at the surface, do not bury these. They are critical to system maintenance.
Protect your drain field by leaving it as undisturbed as possible. Do not drive or park on it. Landscape with grass and avoid plants with deep roots that can damage your system. The lawn should be cut regularly to ensure that weeds, brush and trees do not become established in the field.
Don’t pour grease, fats, medications or harmful chemicals like paints and solvents down the drain. They can clog the system as well as wreak havoc on the microbes that help filter wastewater.
Don’t flush non-degradable items such as dental floss, diapers, flush-able wipes, feminine hygiene products or coffee grounds down the sink or toilet. These items can potentially clog up your system which could lead to a sewage backup, and will increase the level of sludge in your tank resulting in the need for more frequent pump outs.
Reduce water consumption. Excess water use may flush solids into your drain field before they settle in the tank, causing problems for wastewater filtration. All water softeners and filters should not discharge into the septic system. Any plumbing leaks should be repaired immediately. Even a minor leaking toilet can cause an overload of the system.
Clothes washing should be spread out over the course of a week. Concentrating laundry loads in a few hours puts an excessive water load on your system. By doing one or two loads per day, you reduce the potential for excessive water and detergent loading.
© Fraser Valley Regional District