Every tank that we clean also receives a visual inspection at no extra charge. This part of our service is so important to the longevity of the septic system. Since the septic system is located underground, it is not easily accessible for regular inspections. So, when the tank is exposed for a regular cleaning, this is a great opportunity to inspect the tank and monitor the operation of the system.
Here are a few items that we check when we inspect the tank:
1. Condition of the tank - We check to make sure there are no cracks or gaps in the tank itself
2. Inlet Inspection - We always make sure that everything is flowing properly from the house into the tank
3. Outlet Inspection - We make sure that the outlet device is attached properly so that it is holding back the solids in the tank and allowing the clean water from the center of the tank to drain to the drain field
4. Operating Level - We check to make sure that the operating water level in the tank is at the bottom of the outlet line leaving the tank. This helps to indicate whether or not the tank is draining properly to the drain field
5. Measure Solids - We use a tool called a Sludge Judge that takes a core sample of the tank contents so that we can accurately measure the solids on the top and bottom of the tank. This takes out any guess work on if the tank is in need of cleaning. Tanks should be cleaned when they are holding 20-25% solids
The photos above were taken at a recent maintenance cleaning of a septic tank and during our inspection of the tank, we found that when the tank was installed they never installed the outlet device. The outlet device is the part of the tank that holds the solids back in the tank and allows the clean water from the center part of the tank to drain out to the drain field. It is essentially the most important part of the system. Since our technician was diligent in inspecting the tank, we were able to make this relatively small repair, and avoid any further damage caused to the drain field!
You can see that proper inspection of the tank is crucial to getting the most out of your septic system. Please make sure that you are getting an inspection performed with every septic tank cleaning.