Buying a House With a Septic Tank:
What You Need to Know
When you’re looking to buy a house, each one will have different options to consider. Does it use electric or gas heat? Is it on public or well water?
A common situation you may come across is a house with a septic tank. If you don’t have experience with this type of system, it’s important that you know how it affects your home. The key is knowing what these differences are before buying a house with a septic tank so that you know what to expect in the future.
Today, we’re exploring what homeownership looks like with a septic tank. Read on to find out what you should know and what you should look out for.
Benefits of a Septic Tank
A septic tank is essentially a storage basin for everything that goes down the drains of a household. This basin holds the solid wastes and the wastewater until they start to separate. Then, when separated, the water leaves through the drain field, where it can be filtered.
Meanwhile, the solid waste sits within the tank. It stays there until pumped out by a professional company.
The advantage here is that a septic tank property does not have to pay the same monthly utility bills that it would if it were part of the grid. Instead, it is an independent entity that simply needs to be serviced every so often.
Your house’s septic system is also isolated from everywhere else. This is nice because, as long as you maintain it properly, you don’t have to worry about problems down the line causing problems for you.
Inspections and Pumpings
We mentioned that the key advantages of a septic system will hold fast as long as they are serviced every so often. This is one of the most important things to know about real estate with a septic tank. They need to be serviced in order to operate properly.
The EPA suggests having your septic tank inspected at least every three years and pumped every three to five years. Typically, this will simply involve contacting a professional and having them come to service the system.
If a septic tank is not serviced in a timely manner, it can lead to problems. These primarily come from the tank reaching capacity and becoming clogged.
A clogged septic tank can be detected in a few different ways. The drains within the house may run slower and, eventually, start to back up. In addition, the yard around the septic tank may become swampy and smell like sewage.
Make sure to schedule timely septic tank maintenance in order to avoid these problems. While they may all seem like grim and destructive consequences, they do not typically take place in well-maintained systems. It is a simple solution to a dire problem.
Be Careful What Goes Down the Drain
When you have a septic tank, you need to be even more careful about what goes down your drain than you would have been otherwise. Certain things can lead to problems and could end up damaging your tank. This can cost you when it comes to repairs.
Make sure not to flush any solid object. If you accidentally drop an object in the toilet, try to remove it before flushing. If you have children, make sure to prevent them from flushing any of their toys.
Solid objects can become stuck in your pipes or within the septic tank. This can prevent the system from working properly.
You should also avoid flushing any harsh chemicals. Since everything you flush is going to sit together in a tank, they all have the potential to interact with each other. You can prevent these reactions by not flushing these products.
There are even things you think may be flushable that are not. Paper towels, feminine hygiene products, and many wet wipes should not be flushed. They can all gum up your pipes and create problems in the future.
A septic tank house will have a tighter restriction on water use than a house using public sewers. This is because it needs to slowly filter out water before it can be filled with new water.
Normally, this isn’t too much of a problem. Most systems are built with the water needs of the house in mind. However, it may be something to inquire about during the buying process or during an inspection.
Keep an eye on your household’s water use to get an idea of how much pressure you will be placing on your septic system. Some universities and extension services even have formulas that can help.
When in the process of buying real estate with a septic tank, there are a few things you need to know. Make sure to ask several questions before actually going through with the purchase.
Find out the history of the septic system. Ask for a record of maintenance and specifically ask about any issues that have plagued the system in the past. This can give you an idea of whether the system seems to be working or not.
In addition, have the system inspected. An updated septic inspection can alert you if there are any problems. If there are, you may want to address these problems before you move in.
Buying a House with a Septic Tank
A septic tank can be a nearly invisible addition to your house. However, if you aren’t aware of how to treat it, a septic tank can be a huge burden. Keep the points discussed above in mind when buying a house with a septic tank and you can do your best to prevent problems from occurring.
Remember, the number one point to keep in mind is that your system needs to be inspected at regular intervals. Call Goebel Septic to set up your appointment and keep your septic tank working properly.