Yard Care

Chesapeake Yard

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The not-so-dirty secret about septic systems

For septic systems, the three most important things are maintenance, maintenance and maintenance. These rules will keep your septic system working properly and keep the crabs and oysters happy until your next seafood bash.

Six Simple Rules for Septic Systems

  • Have your septic system inspected every year. State or local health departments or environmental agencies can refer you to a licensed septic inspector.
  • Have your septic system pumped out regularly (about every three to five years for a three-bedroom house with a 1,000-gallon tank and more frequently for smaller tanks). Again, state or local health departments or environmental agencies can refer you to a licensed professional.
  • Don't use septic system additives. There's no scientific proof that they work, and some may hurt your septic system or contaminate ground water.
  • Don’t divert storm drains or basement pumps into your septic system.
  • Don’t feed your garbage disposal. It'll mean less work for your septic system. Instead, try using your kitchen waste for compost.
  • Don't use your toilets as trash cans. That can clog your drainfield and mean you’ll have to pump out your system more frequently