• Carl Perna

7 Common Reasons Septic Systems Fail

Septic systems get rid of wastewater from showers, sinks, toilets, and washing machines. Proper maintenance of a septic system can ensure smooth and efficient functioning for up to 40 years or more, but lack of maintenance can cause septic system failure and the results can be costly.


Septic system failure signs include:

· Slow drainage

· Sewage backflow

· Damp spots

· Standing water

· Slow flushing

· Foul odors


Here are some reasons septic systems may fail.


#1 Reason septic systems fail – Neglect – Septic tanks should be pumped every 2-5 years depending on size and use.


2. Wrong Type of Septic Drainage System

There are various types of septic systems to cater to the size of your house, the tank’s closeness to septic drain fields, the type of soil surrounding the fields, the depth of the local water table, and local weather conditions. Some septic system types are as follows:

· Mound Systems

· Conventional Systems

· Chamber Systems

· Community Systems

Installing the correct type of tank and the appropriate type of drainage system will help prevent future failure.


3. Poorly Installed Septic Tank

Improperly installed septic tanks can cause septic system failure. It is vital to install your septic tank in soil with good drainage. Clay and silt should be avoided as they can prevent efficient drainage, and during times of high precipitation when water is slow to drain, septic tanks can float.


4. Damaged Septic Pipes

Components of a septic tank include pipes that are connected to the tank, the home, the septic drain field, and the soil around the field. Damage to any of these pipes can damage the entire septic system.


5. Putting the Wrong Things Down The Drain

It is only acceptable to dump natural human waste and toilet paper in a septic tank. Hair strands, paint, hygiene products, cigarette butts, dental floss, food, and grease can cause clogs in the drainage system.

Clogs can cause leaky pipes, which can result in expensive repairs.


6. Excessive Water Drainage

Septic tanks have a limited capacity of wastewater they can hold. Any amount beyond that is sent to the drain field, which can result in hydrostatic overload and the failure of your septic system. Even a slowly leaking toilet, over time, can result in overload.


7. Drain Field Soil Failure

Lack of wastewater absorption is an indication of drain field soil failure, which is the major reason for septic system failure. Ensure timely septic system drain field maintenance to prevent problems from starting.




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