Using a private septic system is
like owning a car, if periodic maintenance is not completed; the car will
not perform to expectations and may prematurely fail. The same holds true
for a septic system. To increase the life expectancy and prevent malfunctions
of the Mound or Conventional Septic System, the following guidelines should
- Due to the nature of the functionality
of a septic system, extensive traffic should be avoided around and above
the absorption cell and tanks. If the soil on the downslope edge of a mound
is compacted due to heavy traffic, the transfer of water through the soil
horizontally can decrease which may lead to a prematurely failed system.
Heavy traffic over the tanks may cause them to cave in.
- Extensive use of oil, high sudsing
laundry detergents, chemicals, or any other anti-bacteria substances should
not be discharged into the system. The use of anti-bacterial hand soaps
is not considered to be excessive use and will not damage the system.
- Any inorganic materials (diapers,
cigarette butts, plastics, etc.) should not be placed in the system. These
materials are not biodegradable and the bacterial in the system will not
be able to consume them.
- Excessive use of water will
prevent the system from performing to its fullest capabilities. The daily
use of water should be kept within the maximum design flow (150 gallons/bedroom).
- In order to avoid surges in
the amount of water used, laundry and other large volume water uses should
be averaged out. For example, one load of wash could be done each night
for three days instead of three loads of wash in one night. This is one
way that will help balance the bacterial level in the septic tank.
- The pump tank of a mound is
equipped with an alarm, visual & audible, to indicate if the system
has malfunctioned. If this occurs, immediate action should be taken to contact
the installer. If a problem has occurred with the effluent pump, damage
to the distribution cell can occur if proper precautions are not taken when
powering the system back up.
The above guidelines also apply
for a holding tank with the exception of number 5 & 6. If harsh chemicals
of inorganic material are placed into the tank, the treatment facility in
which the effluent is hauled to will be adversely affected.