Why Do Septic Tanks Fail and How to Prevent Problems

A septic tank is an underground chamber made of concrete or plastic to remove waste and water from your home or business. Septic tanks are the plumbing systems used for individuals who don’t have access to municipal sewer systems. As with any other system in your home, septic tanks experience issues from time to time. This article will discuss the most common reasons septic tanks fail and how to prevent problems. Let’s discuss!


Why Do Septic Tanks Fail and How to Prevent Problems


Septic tanks can either backup or stop working entirely. There are several reasons this occurs. Luckily, there are also ways to prevent these problems and preventive measures you can take to get the most extended lifespan out of your system.

Reasons for Septic Tank Failure


The most common causes of septic tank failure are:




Floods can back up your septic tanks and cause significant issues. Heavy rainfall and storms can disrupt the functioning of your system. When the soil becomes too wet to absorb the water around your system, it can flood your tank and cause significant damage. The water then mixes with the waste and flows together to create a mess in your yard.


Sewage Backup


If the sewer system gets clogged and backs up into your house, you can end up with significant damage to your septic system. When backups are more severe, they can result in total system failure.

Lack of Maintenance


Septic tanks should be maintained and checked regularly. If they are not properly maintained, they can stop working or fail. Your tank should be pumped every two to three years.


Excessive Water Use


The number of people in your house and the size and quality of the septic tank can impact your system. When your system is exposed to excessive water use, it will fail over time. Talk to your septic service team to ensure you have the proper size system for your home.




If any part of the tank is damaged, it can cause the system to malfunction. This can lead to system failure if not dealt with immediately.




Clogs can occur quickly in septic tanks when non-flushable items are sent down the drains. For example, baby wipes, makeup products, food particles, and feminine hygiene products cause your system to quickly backup. Severe clogs will stop the tank from working.


Ways to Prevent Septic Tank Problems


The following measures can be taken to prevent problems with your septic tank.


Avoid Anti-Bacterial Soaps and Cleaners


A septic tank needs to have bacteria to break down the organic waste. Without bacteria, the waste remains in the tanks. Since the presence of bacteria is essential, avoid using anti-bacterial soaps and cleaners.


Use Septic Chemicals Sparingly


Before you use septic chemicals, talk to your septic service team. Since some chemicals can do more damage than good, you should use these products sparingly.


Limit Water Use


To reduce the impact on your system, limit your water use. Take shorter showers. Don’t run the washing machine until it is complete. Since wastewater and excessive use can impact your septic system, do your best to limit your impact.


Tank Inspection and Service


To make sure your system continues to work as it should, you should get your tank inspected and serviced every two to three years.


Contact Bennett Excavation, Grading, Asphalt, Trenching & Septic for Your Residential Needs


Do you need help with your septic tank? Our septic company Fontana is the reliable, affordable team that residential customers trust. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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