How do Septic Tank Systems Work

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There are many things that you should educate yourself on when you decide to install a septic tank system on your property. They are very safe and provide a healthy environment when properly maintained. Whether you are new to septic tanks or you already have one in place, you should be educated on the topic to keep them running effectively.

Septic systems protect you from diseases such as dysentery and hepatitis and are more common in country settings. These systems are built in such a way to safely get rid of waste water. The system is comprised of two parts, the tank and the drain pipes leading to a drain field. Waste water runs through the pipes and into the septic tank. Solid wastes are accumulated in the septic tank area where bacteria start the digestion process. It can take a number of days, but the solid waste will biodegrade due to the hungry bacteria which naturally exist in the septic tank. To maintain a healthy septic system, you can add natural bacterial products to your septic tank which contain good bacteria. They will then multiply in your septic tank and aid in the digestion of bad odor causing bacteria.

There are three layers in the layout of a septic tank. Superficial impurities lie on the surface of the first layer. Underneath this top layer is waste water that has been treated halfway. Solid waste sinks to the bottom. It takes one to two days for the water that has been partly treated to flow through drain pipes linked together beneath the surface of the soil. They lie between channels packed with gravel and sand. The pipes have tiny punctures in them which allow water to pass through the sand or soil. This is where solid waste biodegrades. Oxygen naturally exists in the sand and aids the good bacteria in the digestion of toxic wastes.

A septic contractor will be sure to install a septic tank that is the correct size for your home. If the tank isn’t big enough, the waste water will leave the tank without fully digesting the solid wastes. If this occurs your drain field can clog up solids and cause serious problems like waste surfacing in your back yard causing a horrible smell to permeate into the air. This isn’t healthy for you or to the environment. Tank size will depend on how many people you have living in your home. Another factor is the number of bedrooms, sinks and bathrooms installed throughout your home.

A very important thing for you and your whole family to be cognizant of is what you are putting in your septic system. Harsh chemicals found in everyday cleaning products destroy the good bacteria that break down solid wastes in your septic tank system. Also, have your septic system pumped out every 1 to 3 year. This combined with proper maintenance and septic tank treatment will ensure that you have a septic system that operates to the best of its ability for many years.

By: Bradley Skierkowski