Septic System Care

Do Your Part! Be Septic Smart!

 Would you buy a car and never change the oil?  Would you own a piano and never get it tuned?  Would you let your furnace go for years without a cleaning?  Would you only vacuum your house on an annual basis?  Do you wear your clothes until they disintegrate?  The answer is a rhetorical: “of course not!” However, many people, who would normally see to the proper maintenance of their belongings, forget that their septic system needs periodic inspection and the tank needs periodic cleaning for continued proper functioning.  Quinnipiack Valley Health District serving residents of Bethany, Hamden, North Haven and Woodbridge suggests that you follow basic principles for septic system health so you can be SepticSmart! Protect It and Inspect It: In general, homeowners should have their system inspected every three years by a licensed contractor and have their tank pumped when necessary, generally every three to five years. Think at the Sink: Avoid pouring fats, grease, and solids down the drain, which can clog a system’s pipes and drainfield. Don’t Overload the Commode: Ask guests to only to put things in the drain or toilet that belong there. For example, coffee grounds, dental floss, disposable diapers and wipes, feminine hygiene products, cigarette butts, and cat litter can all clog and potentially damage septic systems.  Don’t Strain Your Drain: Be water efficient and spread out water use. Consider fixing plumbing leaks and installing faucet aerators and water-efficient products, and spread out laundry and dishwasher loads throughout the day.  Too much water at once can overload a system if it hasn’t been pumped recently. Shield Your Field: Remind guests not to park or drive on a system’s drainfield, where the vehicle’s weight could damage buried pipes or disrupt underground flow.

Operation and Maintenance of a Septic System

FAQs: Building an Addition or Accessory Structure