A septic tank is an underground chamber made of concrete, fiberglass, or plastic through which domestic wastewater flows for basic treatment. Septic tanks are typically installed in areas where no sewer system exists and the soil absorbs liquids to redistribute into groundwater. It works by allowing the solids to settle out of the wastewater as it enters the tank and then by allowing the liquid fraction to flow out into a drain field. The solids, also known as sludge, settle at the bottom of the tank while the liquid (effluent) is discharged from an outlet pipe or pump chamber.
Septic tanks play an important role in waste water management because they reduce amounts of suspended organic matter, nutrients and pathogens that can leach into the environment. However, if not properly maintained, septic tanks can become a potential health hazard due to the accumulation of sludge or build-up of scum on the inside walls. This buildup can cause an increase in bacteria levels, leading to potentially hazardous conditions within the tank and its drainage field area.
Cleaning a septic tank is an important part of proper maintenance and should be done every three to five years, depending on the size of the tank and number of occupants in your home or business. During cleaning, any solids that have settled at the bottom of the tank are removed along with scum from the sides.
Overview of how to clean septic tank
Before cleaning, have a professional pump out the tank to remove any sludge or scum that has built up inside. This can be done with a vacuum truck or special septic tank “pump”. Carefully inspect the interior of the tank and if needed, have a professional power wash it to remove any deposits.
Next, replace the septic filter and distribute a new layer of gravel or sand over the drainage field area (if required). Depending on your system, you may also need to add new bacteria/enzyme supplements to promote proper decomposition of organic matter.
it’s a good idea to have the tank inspected to check for any cracks or other damage that may need repair in order to prevent future problems.
10 ways of how to clean septic tank
Wear Protective Gear:
It is important to wear protective gear, such as gloves and a breathing mask, when cleaning your septic tank in order to protect yourself from the harmful bacteria that can be present.
Locate the Septic Tank and Access Point
Before cleaning, make sure to locate both the septic tank and its access point. This should be done by a professional septic service or your local health department.
Locate the septic tank and access point in order to determine where the cleaning should occur. The access point is typically a pipe with a manhole cover, but it could also be an opening in the ground.
Pump Out the Septic Tank
Use a special septic tank “pump” to remove any sludge or scum that has built up inside the tank. This process should be done by a professional. Pump out all solids in the bottom of the tank with a vacuum truck or specialized septic tank pump. This will help reduce odors and keep your system working efficiently.
Inspect the Septic Tank
Check the Tank for Leaks and Damage. Inspect the tank for any leaks or signs of damage. If there are cracks or holes, they should be repaired before cleaning in order to prevent further damage to your septic system.
Remove Solid Waste and Scum Layers
Use a shovel and/or rake to remove any solid waste and scum layers from the bottom of the tank. This should also be done by a professional. Remove any solid waste and scum layers that have accumulated in the tank using a shovel and/or rake.
Clean the Septic Tank with a Hose
Carefully clean the inside of the tank with a hose and detergent solution. Be sure to avoid any openings that could lead outside of the tank. Use a hose with water pressure to clean out the tank. Make sure to move the hose around in order to reach all areas of the tank.
Use Septic Tank Cleaner and Bacteria Additives
Once your septic tank has been cleaned, it’s important to add bacteria supplements to help break down waste and promote decomposition.
Depending on your system, you may need to add bacteria/enzyme supplements to help promote proper decomposition and break down organic matter. Add new bacteria or enzyme supplements to the septic tank in order to replenish levels of beneficial bacteria that help break down organic matter.
Inspect and Clean the Drain Field
Have a professional inspect and clean the drain field area to make sure it is functioning properly and free from any blockages. Additionally, replace the septic filter and distribute a new layer of gravel or sand over the drainage field area (if required).
Check the Septic Tank’s Structural Integrity
It’s a good idea to have the tank inspected to check for any cracks or other damage that may need repair in order to prevent future problems. A professional septic tank specialist can inspect the structural integrity of the tank and determine if any repairs need to be done.
Finally, monitor your septic tank regularly to ensure it is functioning properly. This includes checking for proper water levels within the tank and inspecting any filters or screens that may need replacing. Regular
Schedule Regular Maintenance and Inspections
After cleaning, it’s a good idea to have the tank inspected to check for any cracks or other damage that may need repair in order to prevent future problems. After all of the steps above have been completed, have a professional pump out the tank again in order to remove any remaining solids. This should be done every three to five years.
Cleaning and maintaining your septic tank is an important part of keeping your septic system running smoothly. With regular inspections, cleaning, pumping out and maintenance, you can keep your septic tank in good condition and prevent costly repairs down the road. Make sure to follow all safety procedures when cleaning a septic tank, such as wearing protective gear, using the proper equipment and following all local regulations. If you have any questions or concerns about cleaning your septic tank, it’s best to contact a professional septic tank specialist for assistance.