We are all aware that wastewater usually goes into big, sophisticated treatment facilities where water is rid of bacteria and other components harmful to the environment before it is discharged. However, not all towns can afford to build and maintain wastewater treatment facilities. Other than financial and maintenance constraints, the place itself predicts which type of water treatment would suit it best.

In rural areas, houses are located a bit far apart from each other that a sewer system would be deemed too expensive to build, what with all the longer pipes and a lot of plumbing services it will require. Therefore, people install their little treatment facilities called septic tanks.

What is a Septic Tank?

A septic tank is one chunk of concrete or steel. This is usually located in the yard, buried. At most, a septic tank can hold 1,000 gallons or 4,000 litres of water in one sitting. A septic tank lets sewer water enter on end and then go out the other end.

Once sewer water enters the septic tank, it settles into three layers. Anything that forms and rises to the top is identified as scum, and thus, this is called the scum layer. The scum layer usually consists of solid wastes not too heavy to settle at the bottom.

Those that settle under the water are called the sludge. Thus, this is called the sludge layer. The sludge layer consists of semi-solid materials that settle in the tank in about one and a half hours after it enters the tank. Sewage sludge usually consists of organic solids, nutrients; pathogenic organisms that are disease-causing, such as bacteria, viruses, et cetera that come from household chemicals that get mixed with human wastes.

The Piping System Within a Septic Tank

In sewer water, there are organic materials that are broken down by bacteria in the water. This makes the septic tank naturally produce gases, which gives off a foul odour. To stop these gases from flowing back into the house, sinks are installed with pipes called P-traps that hold the water in the lower loop and turn, block the gases. These gases go up a vent pipe instead.

You might be wondering, “what happens to the septic tank when a new batch of sewer water comes in?” New sewer water comes in from one point and then displaces the water that is already in there. It then goes out to another point and into the drain field.

Drain fields are made perforated pipes that are buried deep in trenches filled with gravel. A drain field pipe usually measures four inches or 10 centimetres in diameter. These pipes are buried in trenches that are normally four to six feet deep or 1.5 meters, and two feet or 0.6 meters wide. The gravel occupies two to three feet of the trench. Dirt then covers it up.

Once the wastewater reaches the drain fields, it is slowly absorbed and filtered into the ground. Ground conditions are tested first to determine how big or how small a drain field should be. This is done through a percolation test or perc test. This is a test designed to determine the rate of absorption of the soil where a septic drain field will be constructed. It studies how quickly a given volume of water can dissipate into the subsoil of a specified area. In percolation tests, results usually show that sandy soil has a higher absorption rate than soil with a high concentration of clay. Therefore, for areas with high clay concentration, bigger drain fields are needed.

Why Are Plumbing Services Important for Septic Tank Maintenance?

Septic tanks do not require electricity for it to work. Gravity is the only thing that keeps sewer water out of the houses and into the drain fields. This is what they call the passive system of the septic tank. However, for sewer water to flow smoothly, your plumbing systems should be in top-notched condition. Hiring professional plumbing services will ensure that all your drainage and sewage pipes are not leaking and are creating a smooth flow of sewage away from your home.


Author Bio: Hannah Gilbert is a freelance writer who offers to ghostwrite, copywriting, and blogging services. She works closely with B2C and B2B businesses providing digital marketing content that gains social media attention and increases their search engine visibility.


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