Septic systems are one of two modern alternatives to disposing of human waste properly (the other being connecting to your city’s sewer system). Needless to say, this is important because human waste, when it contaminates our water system, can cause dangerous illnesses that can cause death, as frequently happened hundreds of years ago before the advent of modern sewer systems.
B&B Pumping Septic & Aerobic Cleaning focuses on cleaning your residential or commercial septic system in the Fort Worth area. Proper maintenance is required in order to keep your septic system healthy and properly functioning. However, occasionally septic systems can be abandoned, either by past homeowners, currently homeowners, or by those who are foreclosed upon. These abandoned septic systems need to be taken care of, as they are a danger to humans. In this blog post, we’ll go over some of the steps that need to be taken to deal with an abandoned septic system. Contact us today in the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area!
HOW ARE ABANDONED SEPTIC SYSTEMS DANGEROUS TO HUMANS?
- Sinkholes. Septic systems are installed below ground. When these systems are abandoned with human waste and water sitting in them, this water and waste can dissolve the surrounding rock. When enough of this rock has dissolved, there is a hole left of sorts and the earth above it cannot be supported. Then, the earth eventually collapses, which is usually triggered by a weight being put on it, such as when you walk across.
- Dangerous diseases. When human waste comes into contact with our drinking supply, diseases, such as tetanus, hepatitis A, leptospirosis, cholera, dysentery, and gastrointestinal disease, can occur in humans.
- Toxic gases. Methane and hydrogen sulfide can build up in an abandoned septic tank systems that either can ignite or can make you ill. This is due to the breakdown of human waste as it just sits in one spot exposed to the air.
Back before city sewer systems were the norm (mainly before the 1970s), homes were frequently built using cesspools, which were nothing more than a big hole under your yard where human waste was flushed. When the city sewer system did finally offer service to these homes, many of these cesspools and old septic tanks were just left abandoned and forgotten, not closed off properly. Nowadays, as B & B Pumping in Fort Worth notes, local regulations are set in place to require proper abandonment of your septic system before you connect to the city sewer line.
SIGNS OF AN OLD ABANDONED LEAKING SEPTIC TANK SYSTEM
- Excessive weed growth in your lawn, or you notice a lot of algae if you have a pond on your property.
- A patch of your lawn never seems to dry out completely, always being soggy.
- A certain area of your lawn smells unpleasant, like human waste.
- Part of your lawn does seem unstable and could be sinking in when compared to the rest of your lawn.
- You physically see pipes from the dispersal system. These can be pushed up from the ground by water or other causes, such as surface erosion.
HOW TO PROPERLY ABANDON A SEPTIC TANK SYSTEM
- Call in the professionals. Likely, you’ll have to prove that your septic tank system is abandoned to the city’s specifications, in which case a professional septic tank system company, such as B & B Pumping in Fort Worth, can attest to. Most people just don’t have the proper knowledge to abandon a septic tank system. Plus, it’s dirty, hard work that is best left to those who can do the job effectively and efficiently instead of you wasting days trying to do so yourself.
- The septic tank must be completely emptied and properly disposed of. When emptying a septic tank, a high-powered vacuum is required that sucks the muck out into a storage tank on our trucks, which we then can haul to the proper place to dispose of properly.
- Remove the tank. Depending on local codes, this process could be different. There are several options for removing the septic tank. One is to remove the entire tank and dispose of it, likely at a landfill. You can crush the tank completely and backfill, making sure the tank had a hole in it for proper drainage of rainwater. Or you can fill the tank with a material, such as concrete or some other granular material and then cover it up (making sure that is a drainage hole as well). The important thing here to remember is that the tank will be at no risk of collapse in the future.
- Decide if the dispersal system needs to be removed. Once the human waste is treated in the septic tank, there is often a dispersal system that drains the treated material into what is commonly known as a leach field, where the material is then purified through the soil process. Sometimes, these pipes will need to be removed; other times, they can be left underground. This requires special precautions since human waste has also come into contact in this area if the pipes are removed.
- Properly dispose of any electrical components or devices. Modern septic tank systems can have electronics installed that monitor your septic tank system, or older systems used mercury floats that need to be properly disposed of before backfilling. All wiring should be removed, and the conduit should be capped. Mercury is considered a hazardous material, which is another reason you should allow the professionals at B & B Pumping in Fort Worth to handle your septic system abandonment.
- Fill the hole. This often requires additional dirt to be hauled in, especially if the septic tank is removed as a whole. This is the most important part in order to ensure the safety of the public.
HOW B & B PUMPING IN FORT WORTH CAN HELP
B & B Pumping offers the best residential and commercial septic services in the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area. By maintaining your septic system, you’ll not only extend its lifespan, but you’ll prevent any nasty situations like backups into your home that is not only gross, but also noxious and potentially harmful to you and your family. We can help fix and maintain both aerobic and conventional septic tank systems.
B & B Pumping is a locally-owned and operated septic company that specializes in customer service. We make sure you and your family stay healthy by ensuring your waste is properly disposed of. When you partner with us for your next septic tank maintenance service, you can rest assured that your septic tank system will last. If you live in Decatur, Azle, Haslet, or any of the surrounding communities, including Dallas/Fort Worth, contact us today to get started!