Signs Your Septic Tank Is on Its Last Leg

June 28, 2019 Published by Leave your thoughts

When septic systems in Erie County, NY fail, everyone in the vicinity of the dying tank knows it. The unpleasant smell, the seeping mess—no one wants to be around any of that. According to the pros, the most common causes of septic system problems are situations like encroaching tree roots, clogs and other blockages related to solids and broken pipes, as well as the natural aging process of the system. But the number one thing that causes most in-pipe obstructions is excessive quantities of wastewater flushing sludge out of the septic tank and into the distribution pipes.

If you are wondering whether your septic tank is standing on its last leg and ready to fail, read on! Here are the top reported signs from homeowners that you may have septic problems on your hands.

Initial signs of potential septic problems

There are a few things you are likely to notice if your septic system is having issues. This list includes slow draining in sinks and toilets, sewage odors indoors, gurgling noises coming from inside the plumbing, frequent drainage backups and testing positive for bacteria in well water. While it can be normal for one or more of these symptoms of failing septic plumbing to present for a short time after a storm or after undoing a minor clog in a toilet, any that are reoccurring or lingering are not normal. If any of these signs exist, look around for more pronounced symptoms of failure in your septic system.

With this in mind, it’s time to take a walk out to your drain field. Sniff the air for strong odors caused by seeping raw sewage. A sign of a serious problem is a pungent odor coming from the soil surrounding the drain field and septic tank, which happens due to the gases from the decomposition process reaching the surface. Find the area emanating the strongest odor, and that’s probably where there’s a failure in the septic system.

Identifiable visual signs

Once you determine the point in the septic system where failure has occurred, look around for visual cues. Typically, the most identifiable indicator of a septic issue is lush, green patches of grass or plants that seem to be thriving greater than the rest of your lawn. This visual sign can point to the areas where there’s seepage, which makes sense since septic effluent is like a strong fertilizer (it’s a concentration of dissolved nitrate and phosphate). It may mean a pipe break, or possibly something worse that will cost even more money to repair.

Additionally, don’t ignore pooled water on the surface of your yard. If it randomly showed up and smells overwhelmingly unpleasant, that’s pooled effluent. The soil has become saturated with untreated waste material and is now a serious health hazard. Hire a septic contractor immediately for an assessment.

Whether you’re in need of residential or commercial septic repairs, maintenance or installation, know that the team at Macken Services, Inc. is ready to provide exceptional service. Call us today for help with septic systems in Erie County, NY!

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