Septic pumping-septic tank cleaning

Septic Tank Is Full – The WarningSigns

Septic tank is full, what to look for. If you own a property which depends on a septic tank for waste removal, then you must be aware of the unique challenges it comes with. Forgetting to emptying the septic tank before it gets full can cause a lot of inconvenience and damage. If you have owned a septic tank for a long time, you must keep an eye out for signs that your septic tank is full. 

Meaning of ‘full septic tank’

Before we take you through the signs that you must look out for, it is also important that you understand what a ‘full tank’ means. Experts usually refer to the below three definitions to define a ‘full tank’. 

  1. Accumulation of sludge in the tank: This is a common situation that is faced by many people who own a septic tank. Sludge gets built over time and gets trapped in the tank. It does not disappear on its own, but needs to be removed periodically so that it does not block the tank.
  2. Tank being full up to the normal level: Normal level is the level for which the tank was designed to hold waste and waste water. At this level, there are no glaring issues and the valves are functioning properly. 
  3. Over filled septic tank: This is the point on concern, when the drainage field stops accepting water. In this situation, water will start backing up into the overflow tank. At this stage, water level rises beyond the normal level.

Now that you understand the different scenarios when your septic tank can be full, we can dive into the signs that your septic tank is full. 

Look out for signs that your septic tank is full

Be alert for the below signs and get your septic tank pumped at the right time, to prevent damage to your property and to the tank. 

  1. Slow drainage: If you see all drains throughout your home draining out slowly, you must take a note. This sign can be due to two possible reasons, either a clog in the septic system or your septic tank being full. The first action you can take is to use a drain cleaner and if the problem persists you must call a professional to pump the tank and empty it.
  2. Unpleasant odor: When the tank is full, the gases in it do not get an escape route and hence you will notice a foul smell in your drains, sinks and area surrounding the tank. This is the time to immediately call for your local septic tank expert. 
  3. Water pools: Puddles or pools of water around the drain field are a sure shot sign of the tank being full. Usually the when the tank is at full capacity and solid waste is blocking the system, the liquid gets forced outside.
  4. Slow or troublesome flushing: If your toilets show a sign of struggle when being flushed, there are high chances that your septic tank is full. If all the toilets are showing this, then it is surely beyond a local clog.
  5. Gurgling sound in the pipes: Do not ignore a gurgling sound in the pipes, especially if it is consistent. Such a persistent sound is a sign that your tank if full and needs pumping. 

Experts recommend that every septic tank must be emptied every 3 to 5 years. Proper interval of emptying the tank depends on multiple factors like:

  • Size of the septic tank
  • Household size
  • Amount of waste water generated
  • Volume of solid waste

When buying a new home that has a septic tank make sure you get the maintenance schedule from the owner. With this information in hand you will be able to plan the maintenance of the septic tank properly. 

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