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Is Your Home's Septic Tank Failing? 4 Warning Signs to Watch Out For

A Septic
The septic tank is a part of your home that goes unnoticed for the most part if it is working properly. Waste goes into the tank and is broken down before leaving the tank, and you occasionally need to have the tank pumped when it becomes full.

However, it is possible for a septic tank to fail after years of use. Septic tank failure could quickly turn into an emergency situation the moment you can no longer use the drains in your home. That's why it helps to look for the warning signs of septic tank failure.

Pooling Water

Your home's septic tank is installed underground near the drain field. This is a part of the lawn that wastewater from the septic tank will drain into. It is often the first place to look at when you think the septic tank is starting to fail.

The part of the lawn that is used for the drain field may start to have pooling water if the septic tank has stopped working properly. While this often happens if the tank needs to be pumped or too much water has entered the tank, it can also happen from a broken pipe or a damaged tank. This could require excavating the tank to fix the broken pipe that is letting the wastewater out.

Foul Odors

Sometimes you can identify a failing septic tank with your nose rather than your eyes. Pay attention to any foul odors that are coming from the general area where the septic tank is buried underground. Since a septic tank takes in all the waste from your home, smelling the waste means that it has somehow gotten out of the tank and is seeping up through the ground.

You may smell those foul odors before you see pooling water, but it is not a guarantee. For instance, the water may not have an odor to if the tank filled up from recent long showers and washing machine loads. Also, know that odors coming out of the ventilation pipe are completely normal and nothing to be concerned about. 

Slow Moving Drains

A slow moving drain in your home is often associated with a clog. You may have food stuck in your kitchen drain, a toilet backing up or a shower drain with too much hair stuck inside it. You want to pay attention when all the drains in your home start moving slowly. This problem can be caused by a problem with the septic tank rather than a clog.

Slow drains are an indication that the wastewater is having difficulty entering the septic tank. Using the plunger or a sewer snake isn't going to fix the problem no matter how many times you try. You will need to contact a professional to help resolve the issue with the septic tank and get the drains moving again.

Sewage Backup

One of the worst things that can happen in your home is to have sewage from the septic tank start backing up into your home. Once again, this is a problem you can smell before you see it. The trap underneath your sinks should help prevent odors from coming up from the septic tank, but they may still find their way through when the water in the trap is disturbed.

You will need emergency assistance if sewage has started coming up through the drain in your home. The septic tank is beyond capacity and needs to be emptied. This is a problem that is not going to go away on its own because there is too much solid waste in the tank for it to process it properly.

Be proactive about maintaining your septic tank and pay attention to these major warning signs of septic tank failure. AAA Whites Septic Tank Services, Inc. can assist with servicing your septic tank when any of these problems occur.