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Effective Solutions for Common Septic Tank Problems

concrete septic tank with a capacity of 10 m3

Your septic tank is essential to your house’s wastewater management system. However, like any other system, it may develop problems over time. These issues range from minor annoyances to major headaches and need to be addressed promptly to avoid expensive repairs and environmental risks. In this blog, we’ll examine some of the most common septic tank problems and provide helpful advice on identifying, fixing, and avoiding them.

Understanding the Septic System

It’s crucial to comprehend the fundamentals of septic system operation before delving into particular issues and fixes. A drain field and a septic tank are typical septic system components. The septic tank receives wastewater from your house, with grease floating to the top and solids settling to the bottom. Bacteria break down the organic waste, and the water becomes more apparent as it leaves the tank and goes into the drain field, where soil microorganisms purify it even further. 

Now, let’s explore some common septic tank problems and how to fix them:

1. Clogged Pipes and Drainage Issues

Clogged pipes that cause backups or sluggish drains are among the most common septic tank problems homeowners face. Tree root infiltration, the accumulation of solid waste, or inadequate bacterial activity in the tank are a few possible causes.


Use an enzyme-based septic system treatment or a professional-grade drain cleaner to break down organic debris and unclog pipes. Should tree roots be the cause, you might need a plumber to apply root-killing solutions or snake the pipes. Clogs can also be avoided by routinely pumping and maintaining the septic tank, which keeps particles out of the drain lines. 

2. Foul Odors

Unpleasant smells from your septic system may indicate an issue that requires care. The causes of these smells might be anything from leaks in the system to a faulty drain field or a full or incorrectly vented septic tank.


To begin with, make sure the vent line for the septic tank is not broken or obstructed. If the vent pipe is clean, the odors may indicate a system leak, but they still exist. In this situation, contact a reputable septic service provider so they can carry out a comprehensive examination and fix any broken parts. Frequent maintenance and pumping can also help avoid odor issues by maintaining the system’s effectiveness.

3. Septic Tank Overflow

One major issue that requires immediate attention is an overflowing septic tank. Overusing water, neglecting the area, or a broken drain field can cause this problem.


To avoid environmental contamination and medical risks, you should immediately act if you see sewage backing up into your home or collecting in your garden. Start by using less water in your house to relieve strain on the system. After that, get in touch with a certified septic tank specialist to have the tank pumped and determine the root cause of the overflow. It can be required to replace or repair the drain field, depending on the severity of the problems in the septic system. 

4. Soil Saturation in the Drain Field

Ineffective drain field drainage can cause soil saturation, impeding the correct wastewater treatment and resulting in house backups.


If you fear soil saturation, avoid using water-intensive appliances in the drainage field and get an evaluation from a septic system consultant. Depending on the soil and site characteristics, they suggest aerating the soil, creating a new drain field, or installing a substitute septic system, such as a mound or drip irrigation system.

using an excavator to bury a 10 m3 concrete septic tank

5. Grease Accumulation

Over time, grease and fat can build up in the septic tank, hindering the waste’s natural decomposition and obstructing the system.


To prevent grease accumulation, avoid dumping fats, grease, and cooking oils down the drain. Alternatively, toss them in the garbage or gather them in a recycling container. Furthermore, bacterial additions should be considered to improve septic tank function and break down grease. Frequent upkeep can also aid in clearing the accumulation of grease and solids.

6. Tree Root Intrusion

Tree roots can penetrate the tank and other parts of the septic system to get moisture and nutrients, causing clogs and structural damage.


To stop more harm to your septic system, you must take immediate action if you believe there has been tree root intrusion. To identify root invasions precisely, consider hiring an expert to perform a video check of the pipes. Remedial alternatives include root cutting, pipe maintenance, or installing root barriers around the septic components, depending on how bad the issue is.

7. Septic Tank Corrosion

Septic tanks are susceptible to corrosion for several reasons, such as aging, neglect, and exposure to acidic substances.


Frequent maintenance and inspections help spot corrosion early on, enabling prompt septic system repairs or, if necessary, tank replacement. If corrosion occurs, our experienced septic repair technician in Chattanooga will determine the extent of the damage and suggest suitable fixes, such as installing a new tank or applying protective coatings.

Keep Your Septic System Running Smoothly with Expert Help

You must keep your septic system in good condition for the sake of your family, the environment, and your house. You can safeguard your septic system’s continued efficiency for many years by being on the lookout for warning indications of trouble and taking immediate action to resolve them.

Septic tank diagnostic, repair, and maintenance are included in the full range of services Rooter-Man Chattanooga & Nashville Plumbers provides. They handle typical problems like clogged pipes, odor problems, and tank overflows quickly and efficiently with the help of skilled personnel and cutting-edge technology, guaranteeing maximum system performance and client satisfaction.

If you suspect that your pipes are leaking, don’t wait for those little leaks to turn into bigger trouble. Call Rooter-Man Chattanooga at 833-609-4933 to find leaky pipe repair near you now!

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