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5 Simple Signs Your Septic Tank Needs To Be Cleaned Out

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Septic systems can be great for the environment. They don't consume much energy, and the pumped wastewater does not go long distances. Many homeowners prefer septic systems over other wastewater systems. However, cleaning and maintenance are both key to their optimal operation. As a general rule, a septic tank for the average household will only need to be pumped every three to five years. If you are worried that it is time for your septic tank to be cleaned, here are a few things to be on the lookout for.

Backed-Up Sewer

This is probably the last issue you want to experience it is one that can occur. When your septic tank reaches its full capacity, you will notice unpleasant occurrences in your drains. The drains in the lowest part of your home will be the ones to back up and leak first, so make sure to check the basement first and work your way upwards through the home.

Clogged Toilet

Numerous items get thrown into the toilet and flushed without a second thought, assuming that they will wash away or break down. Unfortunately, this is simply not true and actually can result in major issues. Septic tanks are not designed to break down certain items, such as wet wipes, feminine hygiene products, and medication.

Random Water Puddles

When a septic tank is full, it must let out the waste somewhere. This is why random puddles of water are not a good sign when they start showing up in your lawn. Make sure to check your drainfield as well as around the area where your tank is located. If you notice water puddles for no reason, it is likely time to schedule a septic tank cleaning.

Unpleasant Smell

The majority of septic tanks are automatically designed to ensure that wastewater smells do not escape. However, if you notice unpleasant odors in your home anyway, then this is a sign that there is a problem somewhere. Usually, it is indicative of your septic tank being full and needing to be cleaned and pumped out.


Overflow does not necessarily mean that an excess amount of waste is going to be spilling out of a cap that has blown off. Instead, it could be something simple like a water puddle building up on the lid of the septic tank.

Overall, septic systems are easy to take care of. You just need to make sure that you do not flush anything that is not designed to go down the drains and ensure that the tank is cleaned regularly. If you notice the signs above, you are in need of septic tank services as soon as possible.