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     Septic tank systems are made up of two parts, the septic tank and the drain field. The septic tank is where the sewage from your home arrives to first. Heavier solids will begin to accumulate and settle on the bottom of the tank while grease, fat, and oils will float to the top. This leaves the wastewater in the middle of the tank with the least amount of solids in it, called "Effluent" or "Grey water".  An tee with a stub of pipe is used to take the effluent from the middle of the tank and direct it through its outlet, sometimes through a filter to the next chamber. Septic tanks before 1975 were built with only one tank where as after 1975 two were the common build. Most septic tanks should be pumped out every few years depending on the usage and habits of the user. Having an annual inspection of your septic tank is the only sure way of knowing if your system needs it or not.

Septic Fields & Pumps

     Septic pumps sit at the bottom of a septic tank and pump (sewage) effluent to the method of dispersal treatment being used. Just like a sump pump system, the amount of effluent being pumped out is controlled by stop and start switches or a single piggyback float switch. The amount of water being sent for dispersal is called the dose and exists so the field doesn't become over saturated. Septic pumps are necessary on pressure fields or when elevations and gravity do not align.

septic tank system anatomy


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