Septic Tanks: How They Work and What They Do For a Home

What Is a Septic Tank?

For about one-quarter of US homes, their homeowners know exactly what a septic system is. For the rest of the population, septic tanks can be a mystery. Estimates are that 60 million people in the US are hooked up to a septic tank instead of a sewer and most of these homes are in rural and suburban areas, so it makes sense that most city-dwellers don’t know the facts. 

Septic tanks are an alternative to being hooked up to municipal sewer lines, and they are primarily used in locations where running sewer lines isn’t possible or cost-efficient. A septic tank collects all of the sewage and waste from a home and processes it so that it isn’t harmful. The processed effluent is then released safely into the environment. 

How Do Septic Tanks Work?

Septic tanks use natural processes to dispose of greywater and human waste. First, waste is collected in a large tank with several baffles that prevent solids from flowing through. Bacterial action breaks down waste in the tank and renders it safe from infectious diseases. As more water and waste flow through, the processed waste is carried away to soak into the ground away from structures and water sources. 

A septic system consists of a tank and long lateral lines that allow water to absorb into a leach field. These lines are buried pipes with perforations that allow water to leach into the surrounding soil. They attach to the septic tank’s outlet and allow gravity to do the rest of the work carrying away the processed wastewater. 

Septic Tank Maintenancemaintenance

Septic tank owners love septic systems because they are reliable and low maintenance. However, low maintenance doesn’t mean that no maintenance is required. Maintenance is recommended every two to five years to keep septic systems reliable and prevent the loss of plumbing and sewer services to a home. 

Septic tank maintenance should include a septic system inspected every three years. At this time, the septic tank maintenance technician can recommend when to have the tank pumped out. Over time, solids can build up in the tank to the point that volume is reduced. Pumping the septic tank removes these solids and gives the tank a fresh start. Often this service is only required every five years or so. 


Septic Tank Benefits

The biggest reason septic tank owners love their septic systems is because it allows them the freedom to live outside the city limits. Septic tanks are a great option when sewer service is too far away, but people want to live away from the hustle and bustle of the city. 

In addition to living almost anywhere with safe sewer service, septic tanks are cheap and environmentally friendly. Using naturally-occurring bacteria to handle waste, nutrient-rich water is constantly returned safely to the environment with no energy inputs. What better way to celebrate living in the country than by keeping it green!

About Capital City Septic Services

Capital City Septic Services is the local septic tank expert. Their experts always offer personalized solutions to fit every home and family’s needs. Call today for competitive pricing or emergency septic service in Tallahassee, FL.