A septic tank is the first step in a household wastewater treatment system

A septic tank is the first step in a household wastewater treatment system. Wastewater flows from your home into the tank through an inlet pipe, which usually has a cover over it to prevent debris and insects from entering the tank.

Once inside the Septic Tank, solid waste falls to the bottom where bacteria break it down into a liquid called sludge. This sludge is not biodegradable, so it must be pumped out periodically. Some of the solids, such as fats and oils, float to the top of the wastewater and form a layer of scum that is also removed from the septic tank. Liquid waste, known as effluent, leaves the septic tank through a T-shaped outlet valve.

Bacteria in your septic tank produce gases as they break down the organic matter in wastewater. The most common gas is hydrogen sulfide, which smells like rotten eggs. To avoid a buildup of pressure that could stop or reverse the flow of wastewater, it is necessary to vent these gases through a pipe in your roof. The septic tank is typically equipped with a vent, which has a mushroom shape and can be fitted with a charcoal filter to reduce odors.

A septic system is a series of underground chambers that are filled with soil. A septic tank has an inlet and an outlet that are connected to baffles to prevent the sewage from flowing back into the house. Pipes carry the wastewater from the septic tank to the soil absorption system for further treatment.

The septic tank holds the wastewater for a period of time to allow solids to settle and float, and to provide enough time for the bacteria to digest the solid waste. The septic tank must be adequately sized to ensure that solids are broken down into a liquid that can be pumped out of the tank.

Generally, the size of your septic tank is based on the number of people in your household and your daily water consumption. The more people and the larger the daily consumption, the larger the septic tank.

An insufficiently sized septic tank can cause wastewater to enter the house through the toilet and other plumbing fixtures, which can lead to clogs and health issues. In addition, it can flood the drain field and contaminate groundwater.

In order to prevent these problems, you should be sure to follow proper maintenance practices. This includes repairing leaking faucets, toilets and appliances, and scheduling routine pumping of the septic tank. It is also important to conserve water and avoid flushing non-biodegradable items down the toilet, such as cigarette butts, cotton buds/swabs, or menstrual hygiene products.

A well-maintained septic system should last 10 to 20 years. The septic tank and the absorption field should be inspected annually for cracks, leaks, or changes in the water level. This will help to keep the system functioning properly and prevent costly repairs. It is also important to protect the drain field from excessive water saturation, which can destroy or clog the pipes. This can be accomplished by planting grass and other shallow-rooted plants over the absorption area.