Inspection of your septic tank can help keep it working effectively and save on repairs or replacement costs later on.
An experienced septic inspector will use various approaches to identify your system, such as looking for risers and inspecting its distribution box as well as administering dye tests.
Cost of the Inspection
Costs associated with septic tank inspection can depend on several factors, including size and location, visual versus full inspection method used, as well as whether or not leak detection or broken baffles are an issue. A full inspection typically offers the best results as it ensures all components of the system are working efficiently while also helping detect issues which might be missed by visual inspection methods alone, like leaks or broken baffles.
An extensive inspection should include both the septic tank and drain field, as well as any parts that are accessible from the surface. This process includes opening up the cover to check water levels within. An inspector may run water through their house in order to test for backflow into the septic system using dye, or may run tests using their own equipment in case any backflow occurs.
Inspectors conduct inspections of septic tanks regularly. When conducting an inspection, an inspector will carefully evaluate all aspects of its inlet, outlet, baffles, lids, chambers and inlets; any damage must be addressed immediately by repairs or replacement to avoid future septic tank disaster.
An inspection will also evaluate the condition of drainfield, septic tank lids and pipe joints. If any problems were uncovered during this inspection process, immediate attention must be taken in order to reduce larger, more costly issues in the future.
If you are considering purchasing property with an existing septic tank, make sure that inspection frequencies and costs are part of your due diligence before making your final decision. Septic tank inspection isn’t part of a standard home inspection service and requires specific training and equipment for conducting an effective septic inspection.
When selecting a septic inspection company, it is wise to solicit estimates from multiple firms and compare prices and reviews on HomeGuide or Google, while making sure they are licensed, bonded and insured. Also ask about their inspection process including any additional services they might provide like tank pumping or camera inspections.
Cost of Pumping
At certain intervals, septic tanks must be pumped out. Otherwise, solids that accumulate inside may reach outlet baffles and prevent wastewater from being directed into a drain field, leading to possible back-ups into homes as well as damage to soil and water in its vicinity.
Cost of pumping a septic tank varies based on its size and how much waste is stored within. Larger tanks hold more waste, therefore needing more frequent pumping, which drives up costs further. Furthermore, organic matter that decays could produce toxic gases which could even become explosive over time if left sitting unpumped for too long.
Septic tanks should be professionally inspected every two to five years by licensed professionals, who can determine whether the tank is full and needs pumping out, while also helping homeowners understand more about their septic system to prevent expensive repairs later on.
At each inspection, a septic technician will use a tool known as a “sludge judge” to measure the level of sludge in the tank. When this becomes excessively high, it indicates that pumping should occur. Septic services usually keep records of their measurements and alert homeowners when it is time for scheduled pumping services.
Septic tank inspectors also conduct routine inspections to identify issues within the septic system itself, such as clogged pipes, broken lids or missing risers that might affect proper functioning of your septic system. Repairing such issues may be costly but are necessary for keeping things running efficiently.
Finding a septic tank requires first locating its access points, which may become obscured as trees and shrubs grow over them over time. A septic tank inspector will look for a clean-out (known as a manhole), or they may use metal probes to dig where they believe the tank lies until they find it.
Cost of Repairs
An inspection of your septic tank is an integral component of preventative maintenance. It helps identify issues with the system before they escalate into bigger issues, like failing septic tanks that back up into homes and expose families and pets to potentially hazardous pathogens. Septic inspection is also one of the cost-effective strategies available for prolonging its lifespan as replacing it altogether can be very expensive.
Home inspectors usually conduct a visual examination of the septic tank and other parts of its system, such as baffles, lids and chambers. He or she will check that its size matches up with how many people live in the home; and will test drainage fields by flushing toilets and turning on faucets to make sure that wastewater is being handled appropriately by the system.
An inspector will also look out for cracks in the septic tank and other signs of failure, such as standing water in the drainfield area or overflow from a failing system that overflows sewage into the soil. A cracked septic tank must be pumped out and replaced immediately while an overflowing system could do serious damage to surrounding properties.
Home sellers considering listing their property may want to arrange a septic tank inspection prior to listing their home for sale, in order to demonstrate that its septic system is in proper working condition and prevent any surprises for potential buyers, such as an unexpected failed septic tank or drainfield system. If necessary repairs must be made, however, before selling their property.
Homeowners should consider scheduling routine maintenance services on their septic systems in addition to regular tank inspections. Maintenance services can be more affordable than repairs or replacement of failed septic systems and can be performed by licensed professionals using nontoxic dye to check for wastewater end upping in unintended places – saving homeowners both time and money since small issues can be addressed quickly before becoming more severe problems that require costly system replacements.
Cost of Replacement
Septic systems consist of various components that must work seamlessly for proper operation, including the tank and leach field. If either fails, it could cost the homeowner dearly; that is why it is crucial that homeowners hire an independent home inspector to conduct regular inspections of these areas as well as drain lines.
Septic tanks can be inspected through either visual inspection or dye test and full inspection; visual inspection is less expensive but won’t detect all issues; tank size and depth also influence inspection costs.
At a visual inspection, the inspector will check both inlet and outlet pipes of your septic tank for cracks or leaks, inspect its distribution box for even wastewater distribution to the leach field, flush toilets and turn on faucets in order to assess how well its working properly, test out its system by flushing toilets or turning on faucets as part of a test for overall system functionality.
If the septic tank is too small for your house, an inspector will advise replacing it and check to see if there are signs of saturation in the leach field.
An inspection is the best way to evaluate whether your septic tank and leach field are operating at peak performance. A professional inspector will remove the cover of your septic tank and examine its water levels, making sure there are no signs of overflow or low levels. They’ll also check on any risers located close to ground level that could need attention as part of an overall assessment of health.
Inspectors will check the condition of inlet and outlet baffles that keep solids out of reaching the leach field, to prevent premature pumping of your septic tank. They’ll also look out for any sign of excessive sludge which should make up no more than 33% of its volume in your tank.
If a septic system requires replacement, an inspector will provide a bid on its cost to replace. This information can prove valuable when selling your home since mortgage lenders require any problems with its septic system to be addressed before closing on it.