3 Signs Your Septic Tank Needs Cleaning ASAP

Do you know if your septic system needs to be pumped out or not? Have you ever had your septic system pumped out? In general, a septic tank will need to be cleaned out every 3 to 5 years, but there are a lot of things that can alter this time frame. Some of these things might already be familiar to you. Others are going to be less obvious. If you can't remember how long it's been since you had your septic tank pumped, some indications that you might need to do so ASAP include:

Sluggish drains

It's easy to assume that your drains will stop running when your septic tank is full, but this simply isn't the case. It is true that this is something that happens, but it's also true that your drains might simply slow down rather than completely stop. Depending on the soil surrounding your septic tank, this sluggishness could persist for months without fully stopping. During this period, some people use things like drain opening chemicals rather than thinking to call the septic pumping service that they really need. Unfortunately, drain opening chemicals will do nothing to alleviate this particular problem; you need to have the septic tank cleaned out.

Strange/foul odors

While the area around your septic tank may have a bad odor on especially hot days, this odor should not persist into the cool months. You also should not smell these same odors in your bathroom or kitchen. When this happens, the smell may well be the result of the tank being too full to allow sewage gases to escape anywhere but back into your home. A complete septic pumping appointment should alleviate the odor situation, both inside of your home and outside.

Greener plants

Under normal operation, the sewage solids will fall to the bottom of a septic tank while the liquids are allowed to run off into the surrounding soil. Under normal circumstances, this water soaks into the ground and rejoins the water cycle. However, when your septic tank becomes too full, the situation can change. Instead of just sewage liquids leaving the tank, some of the solids may also escape. This can cause the leach field to clog so that the water no longer soaks into the ground. A clogged leach field means that the water may go up towards plant roots before it is able to be absorbed into the ground. If you notice plants around your septic tank suddenly becoming greener for no apparent reason, it's important to contact a septic pumping company as soon as possible to have the tank cleaned out and inspected to ensure that there is nothing seriously amiss.