Septic System Basics for Homeowners

Posted by on July 26, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Septic System Basics for Homeowners


Septic systems are biologic wastewater treatment systems that consist primarily of holding tanks and absorption fields. A holding tank collects wastewater exiting a house or structure. Solids settle to the bottom of a tank and liquid effluent (gray water) is transported to an absorption field by means of a distribution box. Absorption fields utilize soil to percolate and purify wastewater before entering groundwater reserves. If residents are aware of early warning signs and causes of a failing septic, then their investment can be protected.


Indicators of a troubled septic:

  • Slow draining plumbing.
  • Sewage odors.
  • Continued wet or soft ground above absorption field.
  • Lush green vegetation over absorption field.
  • Water tests show presence of bacteria / fecal coliform.


Causes of a troubled septic:

  • Excess soil compaction above drainfield (driveways, machinery, livestock).
  • Flushing or inserting solids into plumbing.
  • Impeding vegetation roots.
  • Design / installation error.
  • Lack of maintenance.


Protect your investment. Prevent future septic issues and expenses:

  • Pump septic tank every 3-5 years.
  • Properly dispose of oils, fats, paints, chemicals, paper products and cat litter (Not down the drain).
  • Avoid excess garbage disposal use.
  • Avoid unnecessary septic tank treatment chemicals and additives.