In areas where it doesn’t make sense to have a sewer system installed, homes are outfitted with septic systems instead. These waste-removal systems are often placed in rural areas like Flowery Branch, GA, where houses are spaced further apart than in cities or larger towns. While hiring septic tank specialists in Flowery Branch is vital to the health of a septic system, it’s important to understand how these systems work so you can identify when there is a problem and call for help quickly.
What Is a Septic Tank?
A septic tank is the receptacle of your home’s wastewater. It is generally made of steel or concrete. This large tank can hold up to 1,000 gallons of water and is normally buried in a remote area of the yard. One end of this tank is designed to receive the liquid as it flows into the tank, while the other side has an output pipe that allows filtered runoff water to exit the tank.
How Does It Work?
The septic system is connected by a series of pipes. Your bathtubs, toilets, sinks, and showers all drain their wastewater into pipes that flow into your system. Then the wastewater flows into the septic tank where it encounters gases and bacteria. This bacteria is naturally occurring and helps to break down the organic material and divide it up into 3 separate layers. Once the waste has been broken down, anything that rises to the top of the tank is known as the scum layer. Beneath that, the water will separate from the scum. This liquid layer contains chemicals like nitrogen and phosphorus as well as bacteria. Normally it is fairly void of solids. The bottom layer is known as the sludge layer. All heavier matter will sink to the bottom of the tank and remain here.
As more water enters into the tank, it pushes out the old liquid that has been in the middle later. This water then flows through the other end of the septic tank and travels to the drainfield. A drainfield is crafted of perforated pipes buried underneath a trench that is filled with gravel. This prevents the system from flooding the yard and allows it to easily soak into the ground.
How to Maintain the System
A septic system is powered on nothing but gravity. If you wash chemicals or other foreign objects down your drain, it can kill the good bacteria that are present in the tank. If this happens, your tank may have a difficult time functioning as it should. Be sure to have your septic system pumped regularly. Don’t wash anything that isn’t biodegradable down your drain and never put chemicals down the drain.
When it comes to caring for your system, hiring septic tank specialists and educating yourself about how to best maintain it will extend its life. Through proper maintenance, your septic tank will carry wastewater away from your house without any problems.