Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Preparing to Pump out Septic Tank

By Mark J. Donovan

Last evening I prepared to have our septic tank pumped out. Basically this meant digging a rather large hole in my lawn to get access to the septic tank cover. The hole ended up being about 3’x4’, and about 1 foot deep, before all was said and done. Though I had the septic system design plans that showed specifically where the tank was located relative to the house, there is always some play in actually finding the septic tank lid.

The septic tank “honeywagon” is expected to stop by today and pump out the septic tank and inspect the tank for any problems. Assuming all goes well, I will have the septic tank covered by nightfall and the lawn over the septic tank reseeded.

If your home is on a private septic system, make sure you septic tank is pumped out periodically, usually once every 2-3 years for the average home and household size. It is important to pump the septic tank to prevent the drainfield from becoming clogged up by the sludge that normally sits at the bottom of the tank. If the septic tank is not pumped periodically the sludge inside the tank can build up and slowly work its way into the septic drainfield or even into your home. A clogged drainfield is not easy or cheap to repair, and a septic tank that backs up into your home is a stinking and messy affair. The risk of either is not worth the $200 or $300 for pumping the septic tank once every other year or so.

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