A. It all depends on the size of your family. A family of 4 should have their tank pumped about every two years. A 2-member household should be every three years. Larger families should be pumped every year.
A. No feminine hygiene products, paper towels, baby wipes, grease, or cigarette butts. The basic rule of thumb is, "If you don't eat it first, with the exception of toilet paper, do NOT put it down the drain." WARNING: Charmin, Kirkland, and Northern Quilted paper brands should NOT be used. They have too much cotton fiber and will not break down, causing baffle blockages. We suggest Angel Soft, Scott or Cottonell..
A. Yes! Use your disposal in moderation. The disposal will put too many solids in your system. Eventually, it will cost you a considerable amount of money and headaches. These nasty machines were made for city sewers, not septic systems. If you like to use the disposal, you may want to pump more often. My advice is to throw it out the window.
A. In most cases it is too late to save a system after you have developed problems. It is like changing the oil in your car after the engine has already blown up.
A. As far as the system is concerned, you are protecting the leach field from the solids getting into it. If the solids get in there, they can plug up the porous rocks that let the gray water absorb into the ground. The only place left for the water to go is right back into the house. When this happens, the leach field must be dug up and replaced with new leach rock. This can be very costly, not to mention very messy.
A. Not necessarily. If you are not backing up, the smell is coming from a P-trap that is dry. You can get rid of the smell by filling up the P-trap with a couple cups of water. The most common P-tap to go dry is the floor drain in the laundry room, but any P-trap can dry up if not used for a long period of time. In the winter time, your roof vents may frost over causing the system to pull air throughout your drains which will also leave your P-traps dry. When your P-traps are dry, they let the sewer gases into your house.