Homeowners with a septic system assume the responsibility of maintaining it. Without proper maintenance, the septic tank may fail to operate properly until it eventually deteriorates prematurely, causing the homeowner to buy a new septic tank. Most areas require a professional to perform some of the septic maintenance tasks as most homeowners don't have the know-how or the equipment. Learn more about the steps a septic tank maintenance technician will follow during an appointment. 

Step One: Visual Inspection

The technician will start with a visual inspection of your septic system. During the inspection, the technician will search for signs of a leak in the drain pipes and the tank itself. They will also look for anticipated repairs. If applicable, you will have the option to get the repair work done on the spot before it leads to complete septic failure for your home. 

Step Two: Spruce Up the Drainfield

The drain field receives liquid waste after it flows out of your septic tank. It must be clear in order to properly absorb the liquid waste. Homeowners should avoid driving over the drain field and keep it clear of large plants, such as trees. If nearby plants drop leaves or flowers, you should remove them. 

Step Three: Pump the Septic Tank

Arguably the most important part of a septic system maintenance appointment involves pumping the sludge and scum out of the tank. Bacteria in the septic tank will dissolve much of the solid waste. However, sometimes the waste accumulates faster than the bacteria can manage. Certain materials, such as oil, grease, and fat, won't get dissolved at all. Homeowners with a septic system should never dispose of these items, but it happens. This is the majority of what will be pumped out of your septic tank. 

Step Four: Clear the Drains

Drain pipes take liquid waste from your sinks, and showers to your septic tank. Hair, food waste, and paper products can create a clog. To clear any growing drain clog, the technician will use a drain cleaner. The drain cleaner will be specifically designed for septic systems. Most drain cleaners can negatively impact the delicate ecosystem inside your septic tank. However, the septic-friendly products used by your technician will promote a healthy balance of bacteria. 

It is absolutely essential to maintain your septic system regularly. Most authorities suggest getting septic tank maintenance done once every three to five years, if not more.