Did you know that over 21 million American homes have septic systems?
With this many homes having septic systems, you’re probably wondering how to care for a septic tank and how they work. The good news is, septic maintenance is easier than you think, and a well-maintained septic system can last you anywhere from 15 to 40 years.
If you’re considering buying a house with a septic tank, there are plenty of benefits. If you’re interested in learning more, then keep reading.
How Does a Septic Tank Work?
Septic tanks are watertight, underground tanks that store wastewater and are connected to your home by a pipe. The other components of your septic system are a drain field and the surrounding soil.
The soil plays an important role, as it removes the vast majority of contaminants, preventing them from reaching local groundwater. Your septic tank itself is able to separate any waste into three different levels. These consist of solids, effluent, and scum.
Any solid materials will fall to the bottom of your septic tank, where they will decompose. Effluent will filter through perforated pipes, exiting to your drain field. Any residual scum comes to the surface and floats there.
Benefits of Buying a House With a Septic Tank
Septic tanks are common in rural areas where sewer lines are unavailable. Luckily, septic tanks boast plenty of benefits.
For starters, septic tanks are better for the environment. Since raw sewage can leak from sewer lines, septic tanks work to keep the groundwater clean and free from contamination.
If going green isn’t your only concern, consider the financial benefits of owning a septic tank. You’ll forego quarterly sewer bills, helping with monthly expenses.
Septic Tank Maintenance and Cleaning Tips
The best way to maintain your septic tank is with routine maintenance. On average, a home needs a septic inspection every three years. Make sure to hire a licensed septic inspection company to ensure your system is functioning properly.
In addition to septic inspections, your tank will need to be pumped, removing the wastewater within. The frequency of this service depends on the size of your home and how many people live there, but should occur annually. Check out this company for a yearly septic tank cleaning.
Remember to avoid putting the following items down your drain, as they can compromise the integrity of your septic tank:
- Cigarette butts
- Tampons/sanitary napkins
- Napkins/paper towels
- Chemicals/household cleaners
Remember to use septic-safe toilet paper and cleaning agents, and to limit your daily water use so you don’t flood your septic system. Instead of doing five loads of laundry in a day, spread them out throughout the week.
Get Ready to Buy a House With a Septic Tank
Now that you know the benefits of buying a house with a septic tank, along with tips for maintenance and care, it’s time to start shopping for your next home. Septic tanks are highly beneficial to the environment, and require little maintenance. If you find a home with a septic tank, don’t shy away—they’re more practical (and common!) than you realize.
To learn more about home maintenance, make sure to check out the rest of our site. Our blogs have information for all your homeowner needs.