Septic systems

April 4, 2012
There’s no good way to be forced to learn about septic systems.  But here are some things I know. Your septic tank should be pumped about every 8 years.

The bacteria they try to sell you. . .really is necessary. I think you’re wisest to buy it from a septic supplier. I bought some online years ago and ended up with bags of sawdust to flush down my toilet. There COULD have been the needed bacteria in there, but it never seemed to make any difference.

A couple of weeks ago, our whole house backed up. (Gurgling in the kitchen sink is REALLY GROSS! I opened the cleanout and found it full of water, which told me that the plug was between the tank and the cleanout. I plunged it from the cleanout and cleared it.  A few days later, it was gurling again. I bought an auger and tried to move the clog through.  25 feet was too short. But I plunged it down again and watched it drain. That lasted about four days. So I bought a longer auger. 50 feet was long enough and after a bit of work, the water all drained away. Whew! That lasted two full days.
So I called a plumber and he reached down there and pulled the plug out. He very politely told me that tampons are NEVER to go down the toilet. Not only do they not break down, they float and therefore tend to cause clogs. Apparently the half roll of paper towels Thomas had flushed down when he cleaned his animal cages wasn’t too good for a sewer pipe either.
  So, we now have a properly draining house, a septic tank FULL of necessary bacteria,(the label said it had more than 3 TRILLION of them, which is VERY strong) (I got it at Red Dirt Septic on Waterloo for interested Okies) and since the plumber was here, he fixed a running toilet whose handle we’d been jiggling for a while and a dripping shower(which I had already replaced the O rings and it didn’t help. He replaced the whole cartridge and had to pull it out in bits. It was REALLY stuck).
The plumber told me that the ‘strong and soft toilet paper’ keeps plumbers in business. He recommended that we drop down a notch to the flimsier stuff.
This is probably TMI but I figure that if you use a septic system, it will save you a lot of headache and money if you keep your pipes clear, your septic tank digesting properly and your leach fields draining. If you have wet spots in your leach fields (in dry weather) the septic tank additive will probably fix it.
I thought you ought to know. . .Happy trails.
Having been defeated by my plumbing, I went to Hobby Lobby and bought the new clockwork for our nice wall clock. It was easy to install and so I’m back to feeling smart.

1 Comment

  • Reply Lynda April 18, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    Barry could write the book on aerobic and septic systems. He's seen them "literally" inside and out. Although out here, we highly recommend a yearly pump. We'll have to tell you our septic stories sometime. I have to admit I thought brown smelly coming up out of the tub and shower drains was pretty disgusting, but seeing it in the kitchen sink might have really done me in. Enjoyed your right up.

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