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How Does a Septic System Work?

gripping-drain-trapMany homeowners flush their toilets and drain their tubs without so much as a second thought as to where that waste and wastewater is going to wind up. This is because they are connected to a municipal sewer system through which the waste can travel to a treatment plant. However, there are also a lot of homeowners that use septic systems in Marana, AZ. For these homeowners, the responsibility of dealing with the entire waste system is theirs alone.

Without getting too graphic, it should go without saying that you really do not want to encounter any problems with your septic system. It can lead to a messy, unhygienic, and unpleasant situation on your property. As they say, knowing is half the battle. That is why we’d like to share some information with you today about the way in which your septic system actually works. 

How It Works

A septic system, as you may imagine, is not really all that complicated. At its core, it is just a large receptacle that has to allow materials to separate. That doesn’t mean that just any plumber should ever attempt to install, service, or clean a septic tank on your property, though. Simple in theory does not equal simple in practice.

A septic tank is not alone in its quest to hygienically remove waste from your home. Partnered with it is a drainfield or a soil absorption field, which gives the effluent separated from solid waste, grease, etc. a place to drain off into. Before that can happen, though, the different layers of the waste must be separated out to begin with.

When you flush the toilet or use any of the drains in your home, all of the waste and wastewater entering the drainage system is directed to the septic tank. The tank is watertight, typically made of concrete or fiberglass, though polyethylene is also used today. It is tasked simply with holding all of this waste until it naturally separates. There is no active separation taking place.

Because the solids are heavier than the rest of the materials in the tank, they sink to the bottom. The grease and water don’t mix, so the grease rises up to the top. That leaves the water (effluent) ready to be drained from the tank.

What About the Grease and Solids?

Okay, so what happens to the grease and solid waste in the tank, ia it does not drain out–thankfully–the same way that the effluent does. Well, it has to be cleaned out. A good septic service will keep careful track of your tank’s needs and will be able to devise a schedule that will keep the tank clean enough to function properly. You obviously don’t want to be paying to have the tank cleaned out way too frequently, so it is important to work with a plumbing service that you can trust to do the job right for you.

If you have any questions or require septic repair services, do not hesitate to give The Sunny Plumber a call. Bright and Shiny and won’t show our Hiney.

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The Sunny Plumber 2551 N Dragoon St, Ste 157, Tucson, AZ 85745