Septic: From A to Z

Septic Tank Pumping Should Be Done Regularly To Prevent Problems With Clogs And Backups

Septic tank pumping is a home maintenance job you don't want to forget about or sewage might back up in your bathtub or flow out of your toilet. This is a job that requires a professional since the sewage is removed with a pump truck and hauled to an approved area to be dumped. Here's a look at how often you need to pump your tank and what septic tank pumping entails.

When Septic Tank Pumping Needs To Be Done

Learn how local regulations apply to septic tank pumping. Your county might require inspections every set number of years, and they may also have a time limit on how long you can go between cleaning out your tank. You'll want to comply with local laws since the county has access to septic pumping records and they can tell if your address has been serviced within the required time frame.

You might need your tank pumped more often than what's required by your county. You can look up a chart online that shows the expected pumping frequency based on the size of the tank and the number of bedrooms in the home. A septic professional can also help you determine how often to pump out the tank.

How A Septic Tank Is Pumped Out

A septic professional arrives at your property in a pumping truck. They don't need to park right beside the tank since they use a long hose that comes from the pump truck to your tank in the backyard. They'll need to find the cover to your tank, so if it's buried and not marked, they may need to charge extra for the time it takes to find and dig out the lid. There may be three lids that need to be found. One is used for pumping and the other two are for accessing the baffles.

You may not need to be home when your tank is pumped. Talk to the septic professional about their preferences. If you're home, you can flush the toilet to make sure it drains properly and the tank fills like it's supposed to after pumping.

Pumping usually involves cleaning the sludge layer off of the bottom of the tank and checking the inlet and outlet for clogs and damage. The septic tank pumping professional also watches for backflow from the drainfield as the tank is pumped because backflow could indicate the drainfield is clogged.

Once your tank is pumped out, the lid is replaced. Since it may be a few years until the septic tank pumping service returns, you may want to mark the area where the lid is located in case the lid gets covered with soil and grass again.

For more information on septic tank pumping, contact a professional near you.