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Old 02-07-2017, 08:49 AM
Don H Don H is online now
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For a washing machine I send it straight out into the open. A septic tanks is not needed. For your kitchen sink send its affluent to a nearby fruit tree. Besides the kitchen sink, only toilet paper and human waste go into mine. I am one person and usually for urine disposal I simply go outside to fertilize what ever. The tank has been going 20 years.
heavy rain will on occasion somewhat flush the tank. We get about 60 inches of rain here per year. Tank use started about 1994. It has 600 sq of Drain IIRC. I can hook to the sewer anytime since I paid the fee and I am charged monthly for sewage use on the basis of my water consumption. The county thinks I am connected to it. I will need a lift station and about 600 ft of piping to connect to the street sewage line. I look upon the biosolids in the 1000 gallon tank as a back up for fertilizer if I ever have raise food in a large garden due to some sort of famine conditions.
Discharging waste water is against the code in this area. A complaint will bring fines and citations for repair.

Rainwater should not be entering the septic tank. We have a requirement here that all new construction has roof rainwater run-off going into separate dry wells.

I don't think using untreated human waste as fertilizer for plants intended for human consumption is a good idea.
Old 02-07-2017, 09:55 AM
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One of the north western states (Washington I think) has a free online class to get certified for septic system inspection of your own system.

This class teaches lots of good information about your system and also shows how to do inspections, the papers work involved and how to make the tools needed for the inspection!

Add that information to a good effluent filter and you can use a formula to know if your system needs pumping and track it health through time.

A distribution box that allows you to balance the load on your drain field and even allows you to turn off sections to rest and rejuvenate is a good addition.

My ideal system would have ground level inspection ports and ground level risers to simplify access and maintenance.

SD
Old 02-17-2017, 10:04 AM
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www.nachi.org/septic-course.htm
Quick search pulled up this online course, looks like 21 hours or so to complete, according to their time line.
 
Old 02-17-2017, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Don H View Post
Discharging waste water is against the code in this area. A complaint will bring fines and citations for repair.

Rainwater should not be entering the septic tank. We have a requirement here that all new construction has roof rainwater run-off going into separate dry wells.

I don't think using untreated human waste as fertilizer for plants intended for human consumption is a good idea.
"Rainwater should not be entering the septic tank" Very difficult to prevent that from happening
Most septic tanks in my area when there is a heavy rain will spill over. Fecal colliforms counts and nutrients typically shoot way up in our local creeks. Of course often our sewage lift stations also spill out effluents.

You may not think it is a good idea, but in a SHTF scenario when there is no commercial fertilizer available and there no food, I say for my consumption it is a good idea. If it came out me in the first place it is not so likely to harm me. Me being hungry is a worse idea from my point of view. Now the hazard is that it may send pathogens down steam which is not my worry.

In other countries it is used and has kept millions of people alive. With your sort of thinking you only make things harder for yourself. I will be trying soon to buy treated compost soon from our local utility . The biggie is accumulation of metals from biosolids.
Edit to add: I have 8 acres on a sloping hill. No way can I control that water or the water coming from my neighbors above me. For what you speak of a storm sewer system must be in operation. We use road ditches and in some cases retention ponds. Best solution is to put everyone on a sanitary sewer.
Old 02-18-2017, 09:34 AM
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I believe this is the one I mentioned!

http://www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEn...wageSystemsOSS

Here are the videos that go with it!

http://www.doh.wa.gov/CommunityandEn...nspectionVideo

SD
Old 02-18-2017, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by barnetmill View Post
"Rainwater should not be entering the septic tank" Very difficult to prevent that from happening
Most septic tanks in my area when there is a heavy rain will spill over. Fecal colliforms counts and nutrients typically shoot way up in our local creeks. Of course often our sewage lift stations also spill out effluents.
I can't figure out how storm water would get into my septic tank- My drains are all solvent welded PVC- the house would have to flood first.

High fecal coliforms is normal, and does not speak to sewage overflow, The rainwater dissolves bird poop, pet poop, and wild animal poop and washes it into the creeks vs filtering the creek water through soil.

I'
Old 02-18-2017, 05:50 PM
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I can't figure out how storm water would get into my septic tank- My drains are all solvent welded PVC- the house would have to flood first.

High fecal coliforms is normal, and does not speak to sewage overflow, The rainwater dissolves bird poop, pet poop, and wild animal poop and washes it into the creeks vs filtering the creek water through soil.

I'
Plumbing 101: Look water by force of gravity typically flows from the sinks, bath, toilets, to the the septic tank. As the septic level reach a certain point the sewage flows by gravity into the septic tank field that typically has perforated pipe buried in gravel fields to where it flows. After the ground saturates say from a 3 inch rain there is standing water on or water moving that is flowing over the soil surface; it exerts a downward pressure and will flow into the gravel field and then by pressure into the perforated pipe and then into the tank. The water must flow faster into the field that it can escape to the adjacent soils. If exerts enough pressure it will back into the tank. The tank tops are normally not bolted down and sealed with a gasket and the sewage can flow in a reverse manner out of the tank's top area. I was told by the man doing my perc (A percolation test) test that being on a hill that my system would be especially prone to that. One only has to read the monthly county testing of our waters for fecal bacteria and after all heavy rain episodes the creeks and adjacent beaches have higher bacterial counts after rain events.


Link to a diagram of a typical septic system. Unfortunately little is taught in schools how things work and most people have no idea.
https://www.google.com/search?q=drai...S2hNOcTxWp3YM:
Old 02-18-2017, 05:58 PM
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fecal coliforms is normal, and does not speak to sewage overflow, The rainwater dissolves bird poop, pet poop, and wild animal poop and washes it into the creeks vs filtering the creek water through soil.
Sometime this is the case and it is due to a horse yard, bird sanctuary, or similar. There is a field of science called fecal coliform tracking. It can be as simple as checking for a florescent dye like material that is present in toilet paper. It can also be done by DNA tracking and I guess by other molecular techniques.
here is link to educate yourself: https://water.usgs.gov/owq/microbial.html
Quote:
Microbial Source-Tracking and Detection Techniques

(Related terminology - "bacterial source tracking (BST)" and "molecular microbial technologies")

Links are provided below to general information on microbial source-tracking and detection techniques, such as ribotyping (DNA fingerprinting), genetic enterovirus detection using PCR/rtPCR and IC/PCR, and pulse field gel electrophoreses (PFGE).
Old 03-05-2017, 12:59 PM
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I average a clean out about every 10 years. I don't go by what the septic pump guy says, if I did he'd want me to do it every 2 years. I dip the tank every year and check the sludge level. When it's 1' of sludge I get it pumped. 30 year old system and no problems.
My parents went for almost 20 years without having their's cleaned out. Once the septic guy came and cleaned it out, they had to get it done every 5 years or so. My dad puts RidX but still needs cleaning out. I have heard theories that bleach and antibacterial soaps mess up the septic ecosystem. I also remember being told as a kid that if you had a septic tank you shouldn't have a garbage disposal. My father-in-law was a home construction contractor and my husband remembers him always saying to leave the septic alone if there isn't problem. Maybe the trick is to worry less about how much water is being put through the system and be more mindful of what other stuff is going in there.
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Old 03-05-2017, 02:53 PM
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I can't figure out how storm water would get into my septic tank- My drains are all solvent welded PVC- the house would have to flood first.

snip

I'
Check that the lids are water tight. My tank has two hexagon lids and both leak, something I will be getting corrected. With my sprinkling system running, I can hear water drip=dripping into the tank.
Old 03-05-2017, 10:07 PM
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My parents went for almost 20 years without having their's cleaned out. Once the septic guy came and cleaned it out, they had to get it done every 5 years or so. My dad puts RidX but still needs cleaning out. I have heard theories that bleach and antibacterial soaps mess up the septic ecosystem. I also remember being told as a kid that if you had a septic tank you shouldn't have a garbage disposal. My father-in-law was a home construction contractor and my husband remembers him always saying to leave the septic alone if there isn't problem. Maybe the trick is to worry less about how much water is being put through the system and be more mindful of what other stuff is going in there.
This, what you put in is very important. Do not put grease in the tank. Do not connect your washing machine to your tank. To connect a garbage disposal is something only an ignorant person would do. Not sure how much it helps, but I always choose toilet paper when buying at the store that say septic safe. Only put human waste and human waste related products into your sewer system. Send the washing machine to your backyard or favorite fruit tree.
Relative to a garbage disposal I have two dogs that also will lick your plates clean so a dish washer is also not needed.
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Old 03-05-2017, 10:35 PM
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My neighbor down the street works for a septic tank pumping company. He's told me that with due care, I shouldn't have to pump out my system more than every 10 years.
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Old 03-06-2017, 02:00 PM
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poor a packet of yeast down the toilet once a month; stay away from rid-x
Old 03-06-2017, 02:19 PM
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Interesting discussion...thanks. I bought a house last October that has a shared well and a septic tank. I know nothing about either as I am a city girl. But from what I understand, the state of WI requires septic pumping out every 2 years and they will send me a notice.
I don't have a leech field I don't think...it is a mound system. But the washer, dishwasher and everything else is piped into it. I don't have a garbage disposal (which I really really miss) and I was told not to let ANY food go down the drain. There is only me. Am I supposed to put something (bacteria) into this?
I'm the 3rd owner....it was built in 1978. The house has been occupied by 2 four people families previously
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Old 03-06-2017, 02:38 PM
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The system here has been in the ground for about 30 years. It works fine, but years ago we replumbed the washer so it drains into a rock filled pit well away from the house. This was after we were told by the guy who pumped the tank that lint in wash water is not good for the flora in the tank and that it might not break down. If anyone has their washer plumbed outside the tank will see a lot of lint in the drain water.
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Old 03-06-2017, 03:40 PM
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Our system has been in since the late 60's. The leach-field failed about 15 years ago due to a poor design, that is the only time it has ever been pumped. We put in 130' of triple rock field and haven't any problems, had it checked about a year and a half ago and it is fine.
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Old 03-06-2017, 11:23 PM
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The system here has been in the ground for about 30 years. It works fine, but years ago we replumbed the washer so it drains into a rock filled pit well away from the house. This was after we were told by the guy who pumped the tank that lint in wash water is not good for the flora in the tank and that it might not break down. If anyone has their washer plumbed outside the tank will see a lot of lint in the drain water.
I run my washing machine out on the grass a short distance from house. There is an old fire ditch nearby and during rains everything goes into it and probably ends up in the creek. I do not do a lot of clothes and see no lint. My soil perks reasonably well so the water does not hang around too long.
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