Emptying household septic tank. Cleaning sludge from septic system.

Signs Your Septic System Needs Attention

Septic systems are an essential part of any home or business that relies on them. They provide the necessary wastewater treatment for toilets and other fixtures, ensuring that our water sources remain clean and safe. But just like any system, septic systems can fail — often without us realizing it.

Knowing the signs of a compromised septic system is key to preventing future damage and costly repair bills. Below we’ll discuss the different signs to look out for that indicate your septic system is not functioning properly and how to prevent septic issues.

What Is a Septic System, and How Does It Work?

Septic systems are a type of wastewater treatment system commonly used in rural areas where public sewers are unavailable. Septic systems treat sewage from toilets, showers, sinks, and other fixtures in homes and businesses. The septic system consists of a septic tank and a drain field.

The septic tank is a watertight chamber made of concrete, fiberglass, or plastic. It is buried underground and receives sewage from the home or business through a pipe. The waste decomposes in the tank, and liquids are separated from solids. The liquids flow out of the tank into the drain field, where bacteria and other microorganisms treat them before being absorbed into the soil.

A professional maintenance company must periodically remove the solid waste in the septic tank. If the solid waste is not removed, it will eventually build up and clog the system.

Warning Signs That Your Septic System Is Failing

If you have a septic system, it’s essential to be aware of the warning signs that indicate it is failing. With proper maintenance, most septic systems will last for years without any problems. But if something goes wrong, it can cause significant damage to your property and contaminate your groundwater. Here are some warning signs that your septic system is failing:

  • Consistently low water levels
  • Sewage backup in your home or yard
  • Slow or clogged drains
  • Foul odors
  • Lush vegetation growing over the leach field
  • Slow-flushing toilets
  • Gurgling sounds from your drains

How to Prevent Your Septic System From Failing

If your septic system shows signs of failure, it’s essential to take immediate action to prevent further damage. Here are some tips on how to prevent your septic system from failing:

  • Pump your septic tank regularly. This will help keep the solid waste from building up and clogging the system.
  • Use water efficiently. Too much water can overload the system and cause it to fail.
  • Don’t put anything down the drains that doesn’t belong there. This includes cooking grease, food scraps, and non-degradable materials like diapers or feminine hygiene products.
  • Have your septic system regularly inspected by a professional. They will be able to identify potential problems and make recommendations on how to fix them before they cause significant damage.
  • Avoid driving or parking on top of the septic system. This can damage the pipes and tank, leading to costly repairs.
  • Plant trees and shrubs away from the septic system, as roots can grow into the pipes and cause damage

Get Professional Assistance

Following the tips above and watching for signs of septic issues can help you identify problems early and ensure that your septic system stays healthy and functions properly for many years. It’s also important to work with a professional septic company for regular septic services. If you live in Houston, TX or the surrounding area, call Brown Aerobic for septic maintenance, pumping, repair, and installation.