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how septic tank works

A septic system is essential to our wastewater treatment infrastructure but can be tricky to understand and maintain. This article will look closely at how does the septic system work and how you can keep yours running smoothly. We’ll also discuss some common problems with septic systems and how to fix them.

What is a Septic System?

A septic system is an underground wastewater treatment system that uses a network of pipes to move wastewater away from your home. The septic tank treats and filters wastewater before being released into the environment. Septic systems are a standard solution for homes and businesses not connected to municipal sewers.

The design of a septic tank system is quite straightforward. It is an underground, waterproof container constructed of fibreglass, plastic, or concrete that is often rectangular or spherical.

Sludge and scum cannot exit a septic tank and enter the drain field region due to compartments in the tank and a typical T-shaped outlet.

One kind of simple onsite sewage facility (OSSF) is septic tank systems, which provide little treatment.

Septic tanks provide the safe disposal of wastewater for properties with inadequate drainage or those not linked to the main sewage network. They function by collecting wastewater and excrement in a large underground tank. People in rural regions usually utilize them.

Septic tanks are typically constructed 50 meters below the home. They usually consist of a tank that collects wastewater from an entrance line and two chambers or compartments.

How Does a Septic Tank Work?

A septic tank collects wastewater from your home and stores it until treating it. The wastewater is separated into three layers: scum, sludge, and effluent.

The scum is a layer of oils, grease, and other floating materials. The sludge is a layer of solid waste, such as feces and toilet paper. On the other hand, the effluent layer is made up of water and dissolved minerals.

The scum and sludge layers are held in the septic tank while the effluent flows out into the drain field. Bacteria and other microorganisms then treat the effluent before releasing it into the environment.

The septic tank must be pumped out every three to five years to remove the scum and sludge layers. If you don’t pump out the septic tank regularly, it can overflow and contaminate the environment.

Common Septic System Problems

There are a few common problems that can occur with septic systems. These include:

Clogged drain field: The drain field can become clogged with roots, sediment, and other debris. It can cause the effluent to back up into your home or business.

Overflowing septic tank: Not regularly pumping out the septic tank may lead to overflow and contaminate the environment.

Leaking septic tank: A leaking septic tank can contaminate the environment and cause health problems.

Damage from tree roots: When tree roots are looking for water, they may attempt to enter your septic tank if they find it. Leaks may result from this. You may tell whether your system leaks by checking for areas of unusually healthy grass, bad smells, or liquid swage on the lawn.

How to Fix Septic System Problems

If you’re new to septic tanks, you must be aware of these typical issues. Septic tanks may cause owners all kinds of trouble.

Some of these typical septic tank issues are difficult to prevent, while others are beyond your control. You can’t repair them yourself.

Your septic tank troubles may be solved by one of many fixes. But doing this may also be like covering them with plaster. You should never take septic tanks lightly since the consequences might be disastrous for the environment, your money, and your property.

The best thing you can do when you have septic tank issues is to call a professional. But, if you want to try to fix the problem yourself, here are some tips:

  • If your septic tank is leaking, you should first check the baffles. These are located inside the septic tank, which aims to direct water flow. If the baffles are broken or missing, they need replacement.
  • If your septic tank is overflowing, you need to pump it out. If you have the proper equipment, you can do this with a professional or yourself.
  • If your septic tank is clogged, you need to unclog it. Perform this with a plunger or a snake.
  • If you have tree roots in your septic tank, you need to remove them. You can do this with a rooter or by hand.
  • You should never pour chemicals down your drain to unclog your septic tank. It can damage the tank and the environment.

If you have any problems with your septic system, it’s best to call a professional. They will be able to help you fix the problem and prevent it from happening again.


Septic systems are a necessary part of many homes and businesses. They are responsible for treating wastewater before it’s released back into the environment. Learn more about how septic systems work with this post: https://www.epa.gov/septic/how-your-septic-system-works.

If you have a septic system, it’s essential to be aware of the common problems. These include overflowing, leaks, clogs, and damage from tree roots. If you have any problems with your septic system, it’s best to call a professional. Furnace Repair Winnipeg will be able to help you fix the problem and prevent it from happening again.

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