If you have a septic tank on your property, it is important to know how to check if it is getting full. A full septic tank can cause serious problems, so it is important to avoid letting it get to that point.
There are a few ways to check the level of your septic tank. One way is to simply look at the float inside the tank, which will indicate if water is rising or falling. Another option is to use a septic tank gauge or indicator tool, which can be purchased from most hardware stores or online.
If you suspect that your septic tank may already be full, it is important to have it pumped as soon as possible. This can help prevent further damage to your system and ensure that your septic tank stays in good working condition.
While it may seem like a hassle, it is important to regularly maintain and check your septic tank so that you can avoid costly repairs or even replacement down the road. By following these tips and keeping on top of any potential problems, you can help keep your septic system in good shape for years to come.
What Is a Septic Tank?
A septic tank is a large container that collects and stores liquid waste from your home or property. It is typically located outside of the home or main building, and is connected to a series of pipes and pumps that help to treat and dispose of this waste.
Septic tanks are generally made of concrete, fiberglass, or polyethylene. They are typically underground, although some types may be located above ground. The size of septic tanks varies widely, with smaller ones holding about 200 gallons and larger ones holding up to 2,000 gallons.
What Happens if a Septic Tank Gets Too Full?
If a septic tank becomes too full, it can cause a number of problems. For one, the excess waste may begin to overflow into your property or leak out onto the surrounding soil and groundwater. This can also lead to foul odors and unsanitary conditions, which can put your health and the health of those around you at risk. Additionally, an overflowing septic tank can cause damage to your property and the surrounding area, which can be costly to repair.
An equally dangerous situation that can occur as a result of a full septic tank is that sewage can back up into toilets, sinks, and laundry. This is not only extremely unpleasant but also unsanitary and dangerous for everyone in the home.
Signs Your Septic Tank Is Full
Here are some signs that your septic tank might need emptying:
Your toilets are flushing slowly or backing up. As your septic tank becomes overfull, the water used to flush toilets needs more force to exit the home into the septic system. This slowing could be an indication of a clog, but could also be that it is time for a septic tank pumping.
Water is pooling around your septic tank or in your yard. When the water has nowhere to go because the septic tank is full, it can begin pooling in the yard. If you notice more or lusher growth of vegetation in the area of your septic tank, it is time for a septic inspection.
Drains are gurgling or draining slowly. While this could be a clog, it could also be a sign that the septic tank is getting too full.
Bad odors coming from your drains or your yard. Either of these unpleasant situations is cause for concern, since a well-functioning septic system should not have any smell.
Is My Septic Tank Full?
If you are having issues that could be coming from a full septic tank, there are a few different ways to check.
One option is to simply open the lid and look at the float inside of the tank, which will indicate whether or not water levels are rising or falling.
Another option is to use a specialized septic tank gauge or indicator tool, which can help you measure how much waste has accumulated in your system over time.
The best option, however, would be to have a septic professional do an inspection. Many septic companies do inspections at low or no cost, so an assessment from an experienced professional can give you assurance of exactly what the issue is.
Why You Should Have Septic Tank Pumping
Regularly having your septic tank pumped is an important step in maintaining your system and preventing problems down the road. This can help to keep your tank functioning properly and prevent issues such as clogs, overflows, and leaks. Additionally, regular septic tank pumping can help ensure that your system is disposing of waste efficiently and effectively, which can help promote better overall water quality in the area.
During a septic tank pumping, a professional will typically use either a suction pump or a vacuum pump to remove excess liquid waste from the tank. In a more extensive septic cleaning, they may also scrape off any buildup or deposits on the sides of the tank or underneath the outlet pipes. Once this process is complete, they will then clean out and inspect all of the other parts of your system. Depending on the size of your tank and the amount of waste that has accumulated, this process may take anywhere from a few hours to a full day or more.
Septic Tank FAQs
I just had my septic tank pumped and it is full again. Why?
After a septic tank pumping, the tank will return to its normal water level in a few days. If the water level is above the outlet pipe, however, the tank is too full again. This is often a sign that there are issues with the drainfield that are causing it to process the wastewater too slowly.
Will my toilet flush if the septic tank is full?
As your septic tank begins getting full, you may find that toilets flush slower than normal. This is a first sign of a potential problem, so it is best to have it resolved before the issue becomes serious.
What about home remedies for a backed up septic tank?
Many home remedies involve some combination of baking soda and vinegar, which may be helpful in removing small clogs. However, they are unlikely to fix a more serious issue with your septic system.
How much does it cost to empty a septic tank?
Costs typically range from $300 – $700, depending on the size of your tank. Many septic companies will provide a free estimate for septic pumping.
Can I shower if my septic tank is full?
If your septic tank is full, you should avoid using water until the situation is remedied. This includes showering, doing laundry, or even flushing toilets.
What does a full septic tank look like?
Your septic tank will always have a certain amount of liquid, usually about 8” – 12” from the top of the tank. If the level is below the outlet pipe leading to the drainfield, that is generally normal. If the liquid level is above the outlet pipe, however, the tank is overfull.
Avoid a Full Septic Tank
Maintaining your septic tank is an important part of keeping your home or property running smoothly. Whether you are checking to see if your tank is getting full or scheduling regular pumping services, taking these steps can help you avoid costly repairs and ensure that your system works effectively for years to come.
The Most Trusted Lakeland Septic Company
Septic and Drainfield Depot provides fast and reliable septic services in Lakeland and throughout Central Florida. Contact us today for a free estimate.