There’s an old saying that goes, “out of sight, out of mind”. This is a kind of generic platitude that describes the attitude of those who cope with problems through avoidance. In other words, they pretend things they cannot see immediately in front of their faces don’t exist.
This is particularly applicable to issues they don’t know how to solve.
Unfortunately, this is the attitude some people take toward their wastewater disposal systems, particularly their home’s septic tank. The septic tank is often buried underground and literally “out of sight”.
Avoiding any aspect of home maintenance is typically a very bad idea, but this is especially true when it comes to septic systems.
The result of failing to understand the true purpose and maintenance needs for this system can be financially disastrous. Incredible amounts of collateral property damage can also occur when things go wrong.
On the other hand, wastewater disposal is usually not the first thing on the mind of someone who is in the market for a new residential or business property. For this reason, it’s somewhat understandable that the condition and maintenance is often not prioritized - even though it should be.
The first step in avoiding a septic tank maintenance nightmare is to be aware of its function.
Cleaning wastewater: Are Blue Diamond pumps the right choice?
Almost all residential and business properties that have occupied structures on them will generate some kind of wastewater. This water comes from toilets, sinks, showers, and anything else with a drain. When the property is located within a developed municipality, disposal of this wastewater is usually handled by that municipality.
The property owner won’t have to think about anything beyond making sure their monthly bills are paid to the city. Wastewater from these properties is sent to a communal treatment plant to be collected and cleaned for return to the community’s potable water supply.
Properties that are located in more rural areas, or those that are not connected to municipal water supplies need to have individual treatment systems in place. These individual septic systems are really nothing more than miniature versions of city wastewater treatment plants, serving the same function.
The function of a home’s septic system
The primary function of a septic system is to treat wastewater so it can be returned to the environment in a state that makes it safe for re-consumption by people, plants and animals.
This means that solids like fecal matter present when the water is carried from the home must be broken down. Other items that need to settle include:
- Laundry detergent
- Fabric softener
The septic tank is integral to this process. It is the largest part of the septic system, and is the place where wastewater goes immediately when it is put into a drain from inside the home.
Septic tanks can be constructed in a few different ways. They may be made from concrete, plastic, fiberglass or some other highly malleable composite material, and can be completely buried or partially visible above ground. They also come in different sizes to fit the needs of occupied structures serving various numbers of people.
There are two basic types of septic systems: “aerator” systems and “non-aerator” systems. The non-aerator types are the simplest and use a single septic tank. Aerator systems are more complex, often having three individual septic tanks along with other moving parts, like Blue Diamond aerators.
The septic tank in a non-aerator system cleans wastewater of solids by allowing the bacteria naturally present in these solids to break it down into very small particles that are easily expelled into the drainage field. This process takes a bit of time, so the tank holds the water while the solids are being processed by bacteria.
It also functions as an environment that is ideal to grow anaerobic bacteria for this purpose. These are a bacteria type that do not need too much oxygen in order to thrive. Non-aerator systems make use of processes that have been happening naturally since the beginning of time, and they are fairly simple with no mechanical parts.
Aerator systems often have three individual septic tanks. Each tank has a slightly different function.
The first of these holds the wastewater when it is initially offloaded from washing machines, showers, dishwashers and sink drains.
The second tank is where the wastewater is actually treated. This septic tank will contain a pump like a Blue Diamond septic air pump that adds oxygen to the water in order to encourage the growth of aerobic bacteria colonies, which require the oxygen to grow and thrive.
Blue Diamond septic pumps, or other brands of aerator pumps facilitate the process. As a result of adding air in this tank, the overall amount of bacteria present is increased. In turn, this breaks down solid wastes more completely and efficiently, leading to less build up of sludge within the tank.
In many septic tanks, the bottom is sloped downward to allow the settling of remaining solids.
After the wastewater has been aerated in the second tank, it is pumped into the last of the three tanks to allow for more settling. After this, it is sent to the drainage field. The septic system’s drainage field completes the last phase of wastewater processing outside of the contained tanks.
Good Septic Systems Make Good Neighbors
No one likes the smell of raw sewage, and certainly no one wants this scent lingering on their property. This is the biggest reason homeowners need to understand septic systems and properly maintain their septic tanks.
A leaky or otherwise defective tank can release untreated wastewater into the environment. This is not only unpleasant for adjacent property owners, but also dangerous to plants and wildlife.
Waste from poorly maintained septic tanks can even become a public health hazard, which is also a massive headache for homeowners. Taking care of septic tank issues via the help of septic tank service providers as soon as (or even before) they arise can save people time, money and stress, which is an ideal situation.
To learn more about the products available to improve and enhance your septic system, as well as to reach the professionals that will supply and install them, visit https://www.wastewaterpro.com/pages/contact.