Common septic tanks problems and their solutions

A septic tank is typically a large holding tank whose major role is to hold human waste and other biological materials until when they are broken down by bacteria action. In most cases, the bacterial action in the tank breaks down the said waste into three components-that is water, gases, and solids. Over time, water and gases are removed from the tank through water and gas vents to the immediate environments while the solid waste (and other materials) sink to the tank’s bottom and must be removed through pumping, a routine that is done periodically. Stop wondering how much does a septic tank cost and the maintenance, the important thing is to prevent unnecessary problems.

Common problems and the solutions for your septic tanks

More often than not, a properly designed septic tank would not have any problems during its normal operations. As we all know, in most residential areas, these tanks handle not only human waste, but also the kitchen, showers, baths, and even chemical wastes. That being the case, biological processes may take longer than expected, thereby causing septic problems. There are many such issues, but the good news is that it has its solutions. Let’s look at the common ones:

Broken water/gas lines

Drain lines play a critical role in eliminating water and gas from the tank. Broken vents are one of the most common problems that often occur with septic tanks. It is easy, however, to identify this fault. If you realize that the plumbing lines are not draining as required yet the level of water in the tank appears normal, then it implies that there is a collapsed or broken vent.

There is no better solution to broken drain lines than to replace the collapsed or broken appliances. If you have plumbing skills (and of course, with the repair materials), you can repair or replace the lines on your own. Otherwise, get the services of a specialized contractor for better and quality repair works! You can find a professional here!

Excess water in the septic tank

Improper water use can sometimes make the tank hold excess water, even exceeding the normal level. When this scenario occurs, solid waste does not get enough time to break down and settle at the tank’s bottom. It may pass out of the tank into the gas/water pipes, effectively blocking the vents.

The solution to excess water in the septic tank is to minimize it. If for instance, you are draining more water into the tank during the weekends when washing clothes, then perhaps you can spread your washing. You can also shorten showering time or use showerheads with low-flow rates. Concisely, try as much as possible to keep excess water flowing into the system.

Strong odors

Any unpleasant or strong odors coming from the environment around the tank or from the drains could mean that there are a few other unique problems. It may imply that chemicals in the tank are killing the bacteria or solid wastes have excessively build-up.

Strong odors typically pollute the air and it needs immediate solutions. First, ascertain correctly the source of the unpleasant smell. If it is a result of an excessive buildup of solids in the tank, try pumping out until is empty. Otherwise, never drain harsh chemicals like pesticides, gasoline, paint thinners, solvents and so on into the septic system.

Other septic tank problems

Other common septic tank issues are associated with the system, and it includes the following:

  •  Pollution of nearby ditches or streams with sewage/effluent
  •  Gurgling of drains
  •  Toilets overflowing
  •  Ground sinking/movement around the septic tank
  •  Flooded septic tank

Septic tanks are crucial components in household sewerage system as it collects and breaks down human and other biological wastes. While there may be many challenges that can occur with these tanks, the majority of them are easily identified and needs minimal addressing efforts. Regular maintenance of a septic tank is highly recommended to keep at bay the occurrence of the above problems.


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