Troubleshooting Your Septic System

How Water Consumption and Usage Can Affect Your Septic System

If you recently moved from the city into a home that has a septic tank, this might be a big change for you. While city sewers operate in a way similar to private septic systems, there are a few differences. The main difference is that you will be responsible for the maintenance on your system. If problems occur, you will have to pay for them. This is why you should take the time to find out what you can do to keep your system in good-working condition. One of the major things that can cause issues with septic systems is water usage.

How a Septic System Works

If you had a city sewer system at your previous home, you probably also had a city water system. If so, you may already be good at limiting your water usage, which is a good habit to have when you own a septic tank system. Excess water usage in a home with a septic tank can lead to problems.

When a contractor installs a septic system, he will take into consideration the size of the home, the number of bedrooms, and the number of bathrooms. This gives the contractor the information needed to install the right system size. Even if the system is sized properly, you should still monitor your water usage.

All the drains in your home lead to your septic tank. Once the waste ends up there, the system is designed to separate the liquids from the solids. The solids will remain in the system and will build up gradually over time, while the liquids will slowly exit the system through the drain field. The drain field is a system of pipes located underground near your system. As long as your tank is not full and your water usage is normal, the system will complete this process without any problems.

How Too Much Water Causes Problems

The problem that can occur when too much water enters the system is a system backup. The system will no longer be able to handle the water flow entering inside, and this will often lead to solids exiting the system. As solids exit the system, they will enter into the drain field pipes, and this will lead to clogs in your system.

A second problem of using too much water is this can lead to the system forcing out the liquids from the tank in places they do not belong. If this happens, you will know because you will smell sewer odors near your septic tank. You may also notice that your ground is really wet near the system.

Tips for Water Usage

One of the best ways to avoid these problems is by spreading out your water usage. Your system should have no problems processing the water it receives from all your plumbing fixtures as long as you do not overwhelm the system all at once. In other words, you can use as much water as you would like, but you will not be able to use it all at once. To spread out your water usage, you can take the following steps:

  • Have your family members on different shower schedules – You could have a couple people take showers in the morning, and the rest of your family members could take their showers at night.
  • Avoid doing all your laundry in one day – If you typically had one day for laundry, you will have to change this. If you can complete one load a day instead of ten loads all in one day, you will have a better chance of avoiding problems with your septic system.
  • Cut back on your water usage – You could also keep your system working better if you can find ways to reduce the amount of water you use. A good example of this is limiting shower times to five minutes.

With the right steps, your septic system should stay in good-working condition for many years. If you are currently having problems, you can call a company that specializes in septic services, such as SOS Septic Inc.