Now you know how a septic system works, how do you keep your system running smoothly and effectively throughout the year? And how do you know when it’s time to ‘de-sludge’ your system? There are a few general do’s and don’t you should know, however, it is always recommended that you speak to a licenced plumber about the best maintenance and care for your particular system. The amount of usage a septic system receives may affect the regularity of maintenance and the need for cleaning and pumping, so give them a call!
You should check your septic tank sludge levels at least once a year to ensure that there isn’t an overflow of scum or sludge getting into the disposal trenches. For reference, there should be at least 800mm between the top of the tank outlet junction and the top of the sludge layer, and the sludge layer shouldn’t be any thicker than 300mm. If these measurements don’t correspond with what you are seeing through your outlet inspection opening, you will need to get your septic tank de-sludged by a professional. It can take up to five years or more for your system to produce enough sludge to need removing and, when you get your system de-sludged, ensure there is a healthy sludge and crust mixture left (of at least 300mm for most systems) to ensure the biological process starts again!
Handy tip: if you do have a grey water pump well, regularly pour a cup of lime in a slurry form down waste fixtures (for example, a shower or basin) to try and prevent nasty odours coming from the sprinklers when they are discharging wastewater
Of course, if you're in the southeast of Queensland and need to know more about septic systems, get in contact with us.