Why Pumping Your Tank May Not Be Your Solution
There's more to our services than just pumping out your septic tank. We ensure that every component of your tank is functioning correctly and that it's easily accessible for future required maintenance.
Here are some common misconceptions that influence homeowners to believe that pumping their septic tank will resolve their issues.
When sink drains appear to be draining slowly, most homeowners consider it's either clogged or that they need their tank emptied.
However, while pumping out the septic tank may temporarily relieve this issue, it's generally not a permanent solution. There's usually an underlying problem with the septic system that doesn't get identified simply by pumping it out.
If your toilets are backing up it's another common misconception that septic tank pumping will solve your problem.
Some of the realistic possibilities causing your toilets to back up might include broken sewage pipes, poorly functioning filters within your tank or worse yet, solids that have escaped your tank and have entered your lateral lines.
Sewage in your yard is another misconception that pumping your tank will fix it.
Sewage in your yard is usually protruding from the lateral lines or somewhere near your tank. Common problems associated with this include sludge or roots in your lateral lines and unfortunately, improperly sloped laterals that were originally installed incorrectly.
We understand that most homeowners prefer the simple fix of pumping their septic tank out and being done with their current issue. However, the longer you wait to truly pinpoint the real problem, the more costly it might be to repair.
In most cases, a properly designed system should seldom need pumped. All too often we find that most septic systems are improperly installed, therefore creating ongoing issues that result in homeowners mistakenly thinking that pumping their tank is helping to correct the problem.
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When Not To Pump Your Tank
Here's a list of reasons why you should not pump your septic tank.
Diagnosing Existing Problems
If your septic system is showing signs that it needs repaired such as slow drains, toilets backing up or sewage standing in your yard, it's best to wait on pumping because it's easier to diagnose what the actual problem is when your tank is full. If you pump it before we are able to diagnose it, it may result in a more time consuming inspection to find out what is truly causing your problem.
Don't Pump From Small Access Points
Don't pump your tank unless you have large diameter access points such as risers or manholes on your tank. Pumping from small 4″ or 6″ holes doesn't accomplish a thorough cleaning. This will result in not being able to remove all solids that exist within your tank, thus resulting in the solids possibly escaping your tank during the refilling process and entering your lateral lines. We often have clients call us with a clogged dispersal field because of this mistake.
Don't Pump During Wet Ground Conditions
After heavy rains the soil where your tank is buried may be full of underground water. Septic tanks, including concrete tanks, are naturally buoyant when empty. If underground water is present at your tank location, your tank could float out of the ground during or after pumping. If it does, it may damage the tank itself as well as the lines attached to the tank.
Why Tanks Occasionally Need Pumped
Septic tanks are intended to house all the solids from wastewater. When they are properly installed with the right plumbing components they can achieve this.
At some point there can be such an accumulation of solids in the septic tank that it can be detrimental to the functionality of the system. When there is an excessive accumulation of solids in the tank it should be pumped.
You'll find that most septic tank pumping companies in Branson recommend that pumping out your tank every 3-5 years is the regular frequency to consider.
The actual frequency needed is totally dependent on how the system gets used. We have a device that can check the solids and liquid levels in your tank helping you to make informed decisions regarding the frequency of pumping your tank. Some of our systems installations have gone as long as 15 years before needing the tank pumped.
This is usually the case for systems that have not been installed correctly to last and operate efficiently.
We have installed septic tanks over 15 years ago that to this day, still have never required pumping. This has been accomplished because a properly designed functioning tank is meant to only allow the liquids to exit the outlet. Naturally occurring bacteria is what helps aid in the breakdown of solids.
– Jon Hancock, Owner
By installing the inlet baffles (internal septic tank pipes) correctly and adding our Suspended Solids Interceptor, you can prevent solids from exiting into the lateral lines.
Solids that exit the tank and enter the lateral field lines can cause back up issues, which generally leads to the assumption that your tank needs to be cleaned out.
Here's a few reasons why your septic tank may need to be pumped
- Improperly installed system components
- Septic tank filter may be clogged (if you have one)
- Hole in tank allowing dirt, rock and debris to enter it
- Excessive ground water infiltration (tank isn't watertight)
- Necessary for repair to access the tank adequately
Why Pumping Your Tank Is Not The Most Important Consideration
The most important consideration for longevity of any septic system should be the quality and distribution of the effluent (wastewater without large solids) received by the dispersal field.
Unfortunately, there is much misinformation and importance put on pumping, to the detriment of the most vital portion of the septic system, the dispersal field.
Our Suspended Solids Interceptor, a product we install, protects your dispersal field from suspended solids.
Most regulatory agencies require that baffles be built into the septic tank or be fabricated with plumbing fittings. The intent is that the baffles will keep suspended solids out of the dispersal field.
Septic Tank Pumping Reimbursements & Rebates
Here are some resources that pertain to septic tank pumping reimbursements and rebates.
We recommend that you confirm with the following resources that these programs are still in effect!
Taney County Environmental Services
Taney County Environmental Services has been providing homeowners with a septic tank pump out program reimbursement over the last few years.
There are certain guidelines that must be met, but this gives you an opportunity so save a few dollars and protect the water quality of Table Rock and Lake Taneycomo.
Some Program Requirements & Guidelines Include:
- Single residences only, no commercial properties.
- Only pays to pump the contents of the tank.
- Does not include locating or uncovering the tank.
Pump Out Application (pdf)
Taney County Environmental Services
132 David Street / PO Box 944
Forsyth, MO 65653
James River Basin Partnership (JRBP)
According to the James River Basin Partnership, residents of the James River watershed are eligible to receive a septic pump-out rebate.
If you live in one of the following counties you may be entitled to receive this rebate. They include counties of Greene, Christian, Webster, Lawrence and Stone County area above Galena.
Some Program Requirements & Guidelines Include:
- The rebate can only be issued once every 365 days.
- Reimbursement (up to $150) to homeowners.
- One pump-out per property per year.
JRBP Project Manager
Source: James River Basin Partnership
Note: You may also find additional septic tank pumping rebates on their website as well.
Need help locating or uncovering your septic tank?
We can locate it electronically, which reduces the backhoe and excavation expense!
The Benefits Of Our Septic Tank Cleaning Services In Branson
At Envirotek Systems, we have been providing our services for over 26 years. We have the experience and knowledge to assess, maintain and manage your system so it operates and functions properly.
While pumping out your septic tank is one option, we also ensure your septic system is operating at its fullest potential by making certain improvements that will benefit your system.
These improvements include…
Installing Access Risers For Future Maintenance Requirements
Most older septic systems do not have adequate access to the tank. In many cases, in order to pump the tank, excavation must be performed in order to achieve this. We can install access risers that are flush with the top of your lawn so it makes accessing the tank for pumping or maintenance much more manageable.
We Make Sure Your Inlet & Outlet Baffles Are Configured Properly
As you can see from the image, the baffle was not installed and configured correctly during the original installation. We can repair and fix issues like this by properly configuring the inlet and outlet baffles to ensure your tank only disposes the effluent into the laterals.
We Repair & Patch All Leaks & Holes Within Your Tank
After thoroughly pumping out your tank we look for any imperfections such as holes or cracks. Any type of tank can leak, especially if the original installation wasn't performed with care. Whether it's a concrete or polyethylene (plastic type) septic tank, we have solutions to repair and patch them to prevent additional leaks.
We Can Use Our Sewer Camera To Detect Additional Line Blockage
After the pumping we can further investigate areas within your system by using our sewer cameras. This allows us to look for vulnerabilities including sludge or grease build-up, roots or broken pipes within your dispersal field.