Dangerous Septic Tanks!
In rural communities, like many of those we work in, there are more septic tanks than you would find in the average town. This is usually because it would not be economical for the water company responsible for sewerage in a particular location to install a mains sewer. As such, it is down to the homeowners themselves to deal with their waste and the most common way of doing so is with a septic tank.
At BTAC, we deal with septic tank installations throughout the year. Sometimes these are for new builds or barn conversions. They are often for places that have not been residences before. The other sort of work we do is fitting new septic tanks to replace old ones. Like anything else, they have a lifespan. Typically, plastic or fibreglass models will last up to about 25 years. Steel ones have a shorter life expectancy of between 15 and 20 years on average. Although owners will get a manufacturer’s warranty, this will be invalidated if you don’t fit it properly.
Blocked Up Waste Pipes
Your septic tank is connected to your home’s wastewater pipes. Therefore, just like a drain that runs into a sewer, blockages may mean that foul material backs up and eventually discharges into your home. If your toilet has started to drain slowly or gurgles when it is flushed, then it may well be a sign of a clogged-up wastage pipe that is running to your septic tank. Commonly, rodding will help to clear the problem but it may recur if the soil is falling into a damaged pipe, for example.
When rainwater gets into a septic tank, it can mix with the sewage inside and then end up overflowing. This is obviously a health hazard so it must be dealt with promptly. Even if you didn’t know about it, effluence that gets out and ends up in waterways is your responsibility under the law. Don’t get caught out. Check yours after the next heavy rainfall to make sure this is not happening.
Septic tanks should have soakaways but the effluence in them shouldn’t get to their level. Therefore, you need to check how full your septic tank is. Most should be emptied every three years or so but this will obviously depend on a case-by-case basis according to usage and size of the tank.
If you need a new installation or to replace an old tank, give me a bell.
Till next time,