Like any major system that keeps your home comfortable and livable, from your electrical to HVAC components, your residential septic tank and system need to be regularly maintained to perform properly. If you ignore regular septic system maintenance, you’ll inevitably run into problems that are, well, not so easy to ignore—it’s only a matter of time.
Haven’t had your septic tank pumped in many years? You’ll want to be on the lookout for the following big clues inside and outside of your home that mean you probably need septic system maintenance or repair.
Things to Look for Outside
Septic tank problems tend to announce themselves outside first with things like “distinctive” odors and water-saturated areas in your lawn.
Areas of Your Lawn Smell…Bad
A failing septic system makes itself known with foul odors—often described “like rotten eggs”—around the tank and drainfield outdoors.
If you haven’t had the septic tank pumped out in a while, your drainfield may become overwhelmed, releasing gases into the air. At the first sign of these unpleasant smells, it’s a good idea to call a septic service for advice and help. You may not need septic system repair just yet, but you will need cleaning and maintenance.
Part of Your Yard Has VERY Green Grass
Spots of bright green grass over your drainfield may indicate that this critical septic system component is failing to filter wastewater into the ground. Instead, it is keeping water—which could be contaminated and unsafe—near the surface. Often, the lawn in this area won’t just be green, but it will be spongey or boggy, too.
It Hasn’t Rained for Days, But Your Lawn Still Has a Big Puddle
Sometimes, a high water table or excessive rainfall can saturate the drainfield and prevent the septic tank from draining as it should. Cutting your water use for a while to let your septic system catch up might be all that’s needed if you’re noticing “ponding” in your yard. However, this can also be a more advanced symptom of a failing drainfield or other problem.
Drainfields can sometimes be dried out and rehabbed, but you will need help and guidance from an experienced septic system professional to determine your options.
Things to Look (and Listen) for Inside
For indoor drain and plumbing issues, you might call a plumber to assess the issues first. However, did you know that septic system problems are quite often the cause?
You may need help from a septic maintenance and repair service if your plumber suspects that backups or slow drains are related to the central sewage drain pipe that carries all wastewater and solids from your home.
Your Pipes Make a Bubbling, Hissing, or Gurgling Noise
Odd sounds can indicate a clog somewhere in your plumbing system and should be evaluated by a knowledgeable plumber. If your plumber determines that damage to the piping from your home to the septic tank may be to blame, it’s a good time to call in the septic system repair pros, like us here at Biros.
Sometimes, septic system piping can be crushed or broken by vehicle traffic or blocked by plant roots. (Pro tip: never drive over your drainfield or area where your septic tank is buried underground.) Fixing a crushed or root-damaged pipe will usually involve replacing the entire pipe or a portion of it.
Drains Are Running Slow…or Worse
Slow drains—or sewage backing up into toilets, sinks, or showers—usually indicate that there’s a blockage or clog in the main pipe that flows into the septic tank. Instead of dumping harsh cleaning chemicals into your drains, which can cause more damage and problems, call a plumber and your local septic system pros for help.
Unsure About When Your Septic Tank was Last Pumped Out?
As we covered in our last blog post, the average household septic system should be inspected at least every three years by a septic service professional. Household septic tanks are typically pumped every three to five years, and the frequency depends on a variety of factors.
If you recently moved into a new property with a septic system and were not provided with any records of its service or pump-out history, it’s time to get in touch with an experienced and trustworthy septic services provider like us here at Biros Septic & Drain Cleaning. Similarly, if it has been longer than three years since you’ve had a septic system inspection—or one year if your system has mechanical components like pumps—you’ll want to schedule service to avoid problems.
Call the Septic Maintenance and Repair Pros at Biros Today!
In the Scranton, PA area, we’re here to help handle any of the issues we talked about above—or prevent them from happening in the first place with regular septic system maintenance. Our PSMA and NOF certified inspections give you what you need to ensure that your septic system will serve you well for years to come.
Get in touch with us to learn more or schedule service now.