Rules For Healthy Septic Tank Use

Posted on: 7 April 2017

Septic tanks are a convenient source of sewage treatment when you're living off the grid. But they can also be a health hazard to your family if they aren't used properly. That's why there are some strict guidelines to follow if you are the owner of a septic tank.

Keep the Tank at a Safe Distance

Your local government will probably require you to get a permit before you install a septic tank on your site. They will check on the distance of the septic tank from your main residence. For the septic tank to work correctly, it must not be disturbed. Airborne bacteria can be an issue if the tank is kept close to a residence, so be sure that you have ample space for your tank and don't build out your property onto the area of the septic tank.

Have the Tank Pumped Regularly

One of the biggest health risks of using a septic tank is simply when the tank breaks or overflows. But this is is often easy to prevent. The biggest thing is keeping the septic tank pumping schedule fairly regular. Your septic service can give you a good idea of how often to do this to make sure your tank doesn't get too full by surprise.

You can also check on the tank's sludge levels yourself using a probe to test the depths of tank sludge. Short of doing this, you could just look out for any irregularities near your tank. Strong odors and grass that has changed colors are two of the big signs that there is something wrong with your tank.

Treat Your Plumbing Nicely

Plumbing systems must be well maintained. Improperly performing toilets or sinks can drain a large amount of water into a septic tank at one time. That is almost a surefire way to find yourself with an overflowing drain field and septic tank. To avoid this health hazard, call your plumbing services immediately if you suspect that part of your plumbing system is acting up.

Have Water Tested

If you are in a situation where you water source is also self-maintained, such as if you use wells for your water supply, make sure that you have your well water tested regularly. There is a somewhat higher risk of sewage contaminating the local groundwater when you have your own septic system that you are maintaining on your own. So, having well water testing at regular intervals is a good way to ensure there is no concentration of viruses of bacteria in or near your water supply.