Septic System Do's and Don'ts

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Are you considering buying a home with a septic system?   


Some homes have public water and sewer connected and others have private septic and or well.  County water and sewer comes at a monthly cost.

When searching for homes your agent can search using specific search criteria. Pool homes, 1 car garage or more, waterfront, type of construction (block or wood), type of roof, age built, etc.

One of the search criteria is the utilities. I can do a search for only homes with Public utilities (water/sewer) or Private (septic/well) whatever is important to you. If you don't mind either or then I can search all homes. 

My goal is to find you the right home that meets your wants and needs so you are happy with not only what you live in but where you live.  Remember, a lot of the interior and exterior can be changed but the location cannot. Sometimes adding plants, shrubs, fences, paint, etc. can make a home look totally different. Nothing can change the location.


If you are considering a home with a septic system here are some Do's and Don'ts to help preserver the life of the system to keep it in good working order.


Conserve water to reduce the amount of wastewater that must be treated and disposed of by your system. Doing laundry over several days will put less stress on your system.
Repair any leaking faucets or toilets. To detect toilet leaks, add several drops of food dye to the toilet tank and see if dye ends up in the bowl.
Divert down spouts and other surface water away from your tank & drainfield. Excessive water keeps the soil from adequately cleansing the wastewater.
Have your septic tank inspected and pumped regularly by a licensed septic tank contractor. Suggested frequency is 3-5 years.
Keep your septic tank cover accessible for inspections and pumpings. Install risers with lids if necessary.
Call your county health department or a registered septic tank contractor whenever you experience problems with your system, or if there are any signs of system failure.
Keep a detailed record of repairs, pumpings, inspections, and other maintenance activities. Pass these on to the next homeowner.
Don't drive over your tank & drainfield or compact the soil in any way.
Don't dig around the tank or drainfield, or build anything over it, and don't cover it with a hard surface such as concrete or asphalt.
Don't plant anything over or near the drainfield except grass. Roots from nearby trees and shrubs may clog and damage the drain lines.
Don't use a garbage disposal, or at least limit its usage. Disposals increase solids loadings to your tank by about 50%, so you have to pump your tank more often than normally suggested.
Don't use your toilet as a trash can or poison your system and the groundwater by pouring harmful chemicals and cleansers down the drain. Harsh chemicals can kill the bacteria that help purify your wastewater. See the list below for examples.
Don't put in a separate pipe to carry wash waters to a side ditch or the woods. This graywater contains germs that can spread disease. Use a laundry system.
Don't waste money on a septic tank additives. The bacteria needed to treat wastewater is naturally present in sewage. Additives can re-suspend solids causing your drainfield to clog. Additives do not eliminate the need for routine pumping of your tank.
Don't allow backwash from home water softeners to enter the septic system.
Never enter a septic tank--toxic gases from the tank can kill. If your system develops problems, get advice from your county health department or a licensed septic tank contractor.


Do Not Flush:

coffee grounds                        disposable diapers                sanitary napkins               cigarette butts                fats, grease or oil               paints               thinners                     photographic solutions

antibiotics                                      dental floss                      kitty litter                  tampons                  condoms                       paper towels                  varnishes              waste oils              pesticides


to learn more check out Southern Sanitary Systems


#buying a home with a septic system

#septic system maintenanc

#septic tank