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What To Consider Before Pumping A Septic Tank
The Location Of Your Septic Tank
You can locate your septic tank by checking your property records and blueprints or looking for inspection ports, which are small, capped pipes near the septic tank.
You can also try following your sewer line, as it is a straight line that runs from your home to the septic tank, or looking for a manhole cover or a raised mound in the yard.
Your Septic Tank’s Capacity
Knowing the capacity of your tank is crucial to determining how often you need to pump it. Try checking your original building plans or owner’s manual to find the information.
If you don’t have these papers, sometimes the tank will have a manufacturer’s label on the side. Knowing the make and model of the tank is enough to look it up online.
If all else fails, contact your local or county health department. These agencies may have records about the septic system on your property.
The Last Time Your Septic Tank Was Pumped
It's recommended that you have your septic tank pumped every 3-5 years. However, it depends on the specific conditions of your system and how many people live in your house.
If you notice signs of system backup (such as slow-draining sinks, tubs, and toilets), any foul odors from drains, or standing water on the lawn, it’s time to pump ASAP.
The Information Contained
In It’s Maintenance Records
It’s important to keep a record of when your septic tank was last pumped, along with other maintenance or septic system repairs.
This way, if you sell your house, the next owner has a fuller picture of what they are buying. These records are helpful to prove upkeep for home insurance purposes as well.
If there aren’t records, most of the information needed for routine septic tank maintenance can be discovered with a little hands-on research.
Your Septic Tank’s Age
To determine the age of your septic tank, try looking for a manufacturer’s label first. You may need to remove the tank’s cover to find the label.
There might not be a date on the label, but you can still Google search a serial number, model type, etc. If you don’t find anything, open your tank and look for signs of aging.
If you see cracks in the tank, rust in the baffles or along
its outside, or corrosion anywhere in the system, it’s time to look into a replacement instead of just pumping it.