Successful septic systems rely on several microscopic reactions. These chemical processes break down waste and filter effluent liquid over time. Read this overview of the science behind septic tanks to learn how to anticipate and avoid the causes of septic tank failure:
- Bacterial Basics: The first stage in bacterial septic treatment begins in the tank. The waste water that flows into the tank is introduced to an environment of bacteria that feed off of the chemicals found in solid waste. Due to this bacterial interaction, waste solids slowly break down and dissolve.
- Effluent Travel: Since much of the solid material in waste water is broken down into sludge or scum, these waste products must be pumped out of the septic tank on a routine basis. The mixture of waste solids and water known as “effluent” travels into the drain field pipes, encountering additional colonies of bacteria along the way. These growing colonies of anaerobic bacteria, which do not require oxygen to survive, are known as the “biomat.” Near drain field pipes live a separate colony of oxygen-consuming aerobic bacteria. These organisms feed on excess biological material and reduce drain field clogs.
- Soil Solutions: The final stage of septic tank treatment takes place in the ground. Once effluent leaves the drain field pipes, it enters the drain field itself, a densely packed trench of gravel or sand that performs additional filtration before the effluent reaches underground soil. Any remaining contaminants naturally break down as they pass through stone and sand in a process known as “catabolism.”
A Wesco Septic offers experienced septic system repair 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We also provide routine pump services to prevent common septic problems. Call us at (360) 668-6561 to make your septic tank problems a thing of the past.