CHATTANOOGA SEPTIC SERVICE, PUMPING AND CLEANING


THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM

A septic tank system is a small sewage treatment and disposal system. It is buried in the ground on your property. It is used to dispose of all household waste. Its operation and maintenance are essential to the health of you, your family, and your neighbors. It also can affect property values and the local environment.

There are three main parts to the septic system. They are (1) the septic tank (2) the absorption field (also called a leach field) and (3) the distribution box located between the septic tank and the absorption field.

Several things happen when waste enters the system. First, solid organic matter (lighter than water) floats to the surface creating the “scum” layer. Then the inorganic matter (heavier than water) sinks to the bottom, forming the “sludge” layer of the tank. Between these two layers of scum and sludge, only clear water should exist. It is ONLY this clear water that should ever overflow into the absorption area. Solid material should never be seen in this soil absorption area.

The sludge (inert and inorganic materials) in the septic tank does NOT decompose. Therefore, it must be removed. If it is not removed, it accumulates until it overflows into the leach field, clogging that area. This soil absorption area, or drain field, is made up of perforated pipes laid in a gravel-lined ditch, then covered over. Problems occur when solids clog either the perforations in the pipes or the gravel lining. Also, if the ditch has poor drainage, it can cause the flow to slow drastically or eventually stop.

Maintenance of the septic system is simple. The tank must be pumped out periodically. This is because the sludge accumulates in the bottom of the tank. The frequency of this maintenance depends on three main things: (1) the condition of the system, (2) the size of the tank, and (3) the size of the family. If left unpumped, eventually the sludge will overflow into the soil absorption area.

 

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