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Some homeowners in Normal, IL, have septic systems. Although new septic installations are fairly rare, many homes already have a septic system in place. Septic systems have many positive aspects, such as the absence of a monthly sewer bill and complete control over your home’s waste management system. However, plumbing services are essential for managing septic systems. The system constantly receives and breaks down waste, so homeowners don’t have the option of skipping septic maintenance.
Septic Tank Pumping
Tank pumping is probably the most well-known plumbing service associated with septic systems. Most septic tanks can be pumped every 3 years, but the frequency depends on your household situation. As a general rule, it’s better to have a tank pumped more frequently than necessary instead of letting it go too long. Households with a garbage disposal, washing machine, or other factors that increase the amount of solid waste produced may need more frequent pumping.
Pumping is a good time to treat the septic system with additives. Septic additive products replace the bacteria that break down solids in septic tanks. It’s easy to assume that bacteria wouldn’t need to be replenished because they constantly multiply as they break down food sources. However, septic tanks are the receptacle for all wastewater from a home. This means that soap, shampoo, laundry detergent, dish soap, cleaning products, bleach, and other disinfectants are draining into the tank. All of these substances kill bacteria. Additives can help bring bacterial levels back up to acceptable levels.
Pipelining and Clogs
Pipelining is a way to repair your septic system, or other damaged drain pipes, without an expensive and destructive excavation. Plumbing service providers insert new pipes inside the existing pipe to reinforce the other walls. This repair method is relatively hassle-free compared to traditional repair methods that frequently involve mounds of dirt in the yard. Pipelining can also prevent major repairs in the future by fixing small cracks and leaks
If you notice showers, toilets, or sinks draining slowly, the problem could be a full septic tank or clogged drains. A plumbing service provider can find the underlying issue and fix it. Video cameras that record footage from inside plumbing pipes are an excellent tool to pinpoint exactly where the problem is. Drain cleaning, with a snake or hydro-jetting, addresses clogged drains, while an overly full septic tank probably needs to be pumped out. Tree roots may be the culprit of slow drains and blocked pipes as well. Roots can also infiltrate your septic system, which may be a major problem if it isn’t caught early.
Septic Tank Vents
Septic tanks should always have vents to release pressure. Gas build-up can be surprisingly destructive. Bacteria produce gases while they break down the solids in septic tanks. If that gas has nowhere to go, it will force its way out at the weakest point. Call your local plumbing service provider in Normal, IL, if you aren’t sure if your tank has a vent or suspect that the vents may be clogged. Most vents are located near the leach field to bring trapped air from the tank up to the surface. The vent pipe probably looks like a white tube sticking out of the ground. Locating the vent pipe can also indicate the general area of the leech field. This is useful in some cases because people don’t always know the exact position of leach fields, especially if they didn’t own the house when the septic system was installed.
Some homeowners choose to disguise septic vent pipes, but this requires caution. Landscaping a yard with a leach field is safe, but only if it’s done correctly. Don’t disturb the leach field or plant trees above the septic tank. It’s probably a good idea to avoid shrubs and any other kind of plant with a large root system. Planting a tree or bush above the septic system is almost an invitation for root intrusion. Cutting septic vent pipes is not a good idea. If it’s cut too short, it may not work correctly. Some municipalities also have regulations that dictate the length and type of septic vent pipes, and these regulations may not allow any alterations. Keep in mind that a short pipe has a greater chance of being clogged with dirt and debris. Ask a plumbing service professional for input before landscaping projects.
Routine plumbing service maintenance includes septic inspections. Some state and local governments require septic inspections in some situations, such as buying or selling a home. Septic systems aren’t cheap, so they need to be evaluated before any sort of real estate transaction. Switching from a septic system to a public sewer hookup can be a time-consuming or frustrating process. This doesn’t happen often, but sometimes homeowners choose to switch to public sewer service if their septic system needs major repairs. Some municipalities and HOAs try to force homeowners to switch, although people that lived in the community prior to this requirement aren’t always obligated to follow it. That can become a complicated situation, so it’s important to have a knowledgeable local plumbing service professional to advise you and help you.
If you’re thinking of switching, remember that attaching to public infrastructure means one more monthly bill, so it may be worthwhile to compare the yearly cost of a sewage bill to the cost of maintaining your septic system. The initial installation costs need to be considered as well. You would also lose the autonomy of managing your septic system. Individual homeowners can be affected by problems in public infrastructure.
Contact Covenant Plumbing in Normal, IL, for plumbing services such as septic inspections, repair, and maintenance. The professional plumbers at Covenant are also available to answer questions and help you with other plumbing issues throughout your home.