How to Maintain Your Septic Tank / System
Your residential septic tank in Sydney should be inspected at least every three years by a local plumber Sydney offering septic tank maintenance. The septic tanks are typically pumped every two to three years. Systems with electrical float switches, pumps, or mechanical parts should be inspected by a professional every 12-18 months. Having a maintenance contract with a plumber will be the best way to do this.
The major factors which influence the frequency of septic pumping include:
- Size of Your Home
- Amount of Wastewater generated
- Amount of debris in Wastewater
- Size of Septic Tank
What You Need to Know When Calling a Plumber to Service Your Septic Tank
When you call a plumber to service your septic tank, he or she will inspect it for leaks and check the scum and sludge layers in your septic tank.
They should keep records on work performed on your septic system (this is why it’s good to have a contract in place for regular servicing)
Your septic tank includes a T-shaped outlet to prevent sludge and scum from leaving the tank and traveling to the drainage area. If the bottom of the scum layer is within six inches of the bottom of the outlet, or if the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the outlet, your tank will need to be pumped.
To keep track of when to pump out your tank, write down the sludge and scum levels found by the septic professional.
The service provider should note repairs completed and the tank condition in your system’s service report. If other repairs are recommended, hire a repair person soon.
How to care for Your Septic Tank
If you do not have a Worm Farm Septic Tank these tips for the care and operation of your septic tank maybe helpful.
- Restrict the use of germicides (such as strong detergents, disinfectants, toilet cleaners and bleaches), as they will kill the good bacteria which breaks down helps the septic tank work more efficiently
- Use soapy water to clean toilets and other fixtures
- Use only detergents that have low alkaline salts and chlorine levels.
- Odours may occur on installation or after addition of large quantity of germicide. If this happens, flush a cup of lime down the toilet each day until odours abate.
- Use of proprietary or chemical additives is not recommended at any time for septic systems – except for lime when used to remove odours.
- Do not flush plastics or sanitary items down the system
- Minimise the amounts of oil and fat flushed into the system – save this for your garden instead
- Use a sink strainer to restrict food scraps entering the septic system. Do not use garbage disposal units.
- Fill tank with water to reduce odours on start up or after desludging tanks. They should not be washed or disinfected after desludging.
- Ensure the tank and disposal field are not built over or disturbed.
- Inspect the system at least annually and get a plumber to clean and remove sludge from the tank at least once every three years, or as otherwise directed by the council.
Do you have a plumbing problem? Check out our article on How to deal with a plumbing emergency