What's That Smell? How To Know When It's Time To Have Your Septic Tank Pumped

If you are one of the people who has never had a septic system at their home, it may seem confusing to know when it is time to have it emptied. Luckily, there are very easy to understand guidelines to help you know when it is time to have your septic tank pumped.

Check for Back-up in your yard

If your septic tank is getting full, it will not drain properly. This can result in wet, soggy areas in your yard near the tank and drain field. Soft, wet ground when it hasn't rained is a good indicator that it may be time to pump.

If your drainage is backing up into your yard, you may also notice a foul smell. A properly functioning septic system drains the liquids down into the ground and will not leave your yard smelling like a port-a-potty.

Measure the sludge level

Contact a professional such as A-1 Advanced Pumping Service Inc to come out and inspect your system. They can measure the sludge level currently built up in your system and give you a recommendation on how often you should be having it emptied. They will take into consideration the size of your tank, how many people live in your house, your appliances (dishwashers and washing machines for example), and the legal requirements in your area to give you a customized pumping schedule.

Listen to your drains

When your septic tank is getting over-filled, you may hear or see bubbling or gurgling in your drains. These are often noticed in the toilet drain where large air bubbles may come out of the bowl, even when the toilet is not in use. Depending on the setup of your plumbing, you may also notice soap from your washing machine backing up into a toilet bowl or shower and sink drains. These are all good indicators that your septic system needs attention.

Stick to a schedule

Many municipalities designate a maximum amount of time that you should go between pumping, but depending on your unique situation, you may need to have it done more frequently. Regularly having your septic tank emptied is the best way to avoid back-ups, clogged pipes, and damage to your entire system.

Knowing when to have your septic system pumped doesn't have to be complicated. Whether you always had city water or are new to home ownership, following these simple tips will help you keep your septic system in good working order. 


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