When should you empty your septic tank and why?

empty your septic tank / vider la fosse septique

Underground tank with two compartments, a septic tank is a sanitary facility collecting residual waste from sinks, toilets, showers and drains of a residence. Its operation is very simple. Separating solids from liquids in waste water, the septic tank performs the primary treatment of contaminants. In fact, it is used to liquify solids by settling and fermentation through the action of anaerobic bacteria. While the solids settle to the bottom of the tank in the form of sludge, scum floats to the surface. Draining the septic tank allows the removal of sludge and solids which, without this process, could be carried to the drainage system and render it ineffective.

When should you have your septic tank emptied?  

According to section 13 (Q-2, r.8) of the Regulation Respecting Wastewater Disposal and Treatment Systems, “A septic tank used seasonally must be emptied at least once every 4 years. A septic tank used year round must be emptied at least once every 2 years. It is also recommended to empty the septic tank when it is 50% full. In addition, the BAPE (Office of Public Hearings on the Environment) advises to empty it when the thickness of the scum layer is equal to or thicker than 12 centimeters or when the thickness of the sludge layer is equal or thicker than 30 centimeters. Moreover, since we live in a four season country, it is recommended to empty the septic tank in summer. If we wait until late in the season, the bacterial flora does not have time to form before the arrival of the cold weather.

Why is it necessary to have your septic tank drained?  

Emptying the  septic tank is essential! As stated by the Quebec Environment Quality Act (EQA) “sewage from an isolated residence is a contaminant. […] When not treated or treated inappropriately, these waters pose a risk to public health and the environment, particularly because they cause nuisance and contamination of water intended for human consumption as well as surface water (lakes, rivers, streams, etc.) “.

In addition to the environmental aspect, a septic tank which is not properly maintained can cause several other inconveniences such as the obstruction of your pipes, toilet, bath, sink and thus cause a backflow of waste water inside your home. Foul odors can also come from the location of the tank in your garden and spread inside your home through the pipes.

Therefore, to avoid many inconveniences and in order to be in accordance with the regulations in effect, we recommend an efficient maintenance of your sanitary facilities and to have your septic tank emptied by professionals. For more information? Consult Sanibert sanitary service specialists.

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