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(530) 444-9369
Call Us Today!
(530) 444-9369

Tips & Facts

EL DORADO COUNTY SEPTIC SYSTEM INSPECTIONS
Homeowners should have their septic system inspected from time to time to ensure their system continues to work properly and to avoid costly repairs and replacements before they become necessary. This is especially true when a property is being sold. It gives peace of mind to buyers, fulfills the California seller's requirement of notifying the buyer of all known property defects and keeps real estate agents out of any issues that might arise after the fact.
HOMEOWNERS
Getting your septic system inspected every few years will help to keep your system working properly and help identify potential problems before they turn into a "replace the system" scenario. Inspections can easily be completed when you have your tank pumped out every 3-5 years and should include both visual inspections of your system's primary components as well as a hydraulic test.
BUYERS
Have peace ofmind knowing that you're not going to get stuck with an expensive surprise after closing on your new property. Septic system inspections are a quick, inexpensive way to ensure you're making an informed decision before closing on a new home.
SELLERS
California law requires all sellers to disclose any known problems with the property to buyers. A septic inspection is a safe way to ensure that even an "unknown" problem doesn't get in the way of a smooth closing or worse, turn into a legal battle after the fact.
REAL ESTATE AGENTS

First and foremost, getting a property's septic system inspected will help ensure a smooth transaction, and smooth transactions are good for your business. And while California disclosure laws don't directly apply to realtors, error and omission insurance policies are often brought into to legal disputes as easy targets during litigation when problems do arise.
SEPTIC SYSTEMS ARE EXPENSIVE. LET'S SAVE YOU SOME MONEY.

Trust us, we get it. Nobody wants to throw money at something buried under the ground whose only job is to deal with stuff you don't want to think about to begin with. That said, they're expensive, engineered systems and if you wait until something's wrong, they generally become a lot more expensive. Below we'll try to give you some advice for keeping everything working correctly and answer some of the most common question we get.
OUR BUSINESS IS "YOUR BUSINESS," BUT WE'D RATHER JUST PUMP YOU OUT EVERY FEW YEARS
WE CAN'T STRESS THIS ENOUGH - GET YOUR TANK PUMPED OUT EVERY 3-5 YEARS!

We're not telling you this so we can bill you for a pump out. We're telling you this because the number one cause of septic system failure is not getting your tank pumped out often enough.
When your tank is full too often or for too long, bad things happen. On the gross side, we've seen full sewage backups into people's homes. That's a messy cleanup. On the expensive side, when your tank is full too often or too long, semi-solid material starts to flood into your leaching field. Your leaching field is meant to be porous enough to provide adequate drainage. When this overflow material seeps into the drain field, it clogs those pores and eventually kills your field's ability to filter out liquid waste. The only solution at that point is to build a new field. New fields are expensive - much more so than a pump out every few years.
KNOW WHERE YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM COMPONENTS ARE

Knowing where your septic tank, leaching field and connecting pipes are located are a huge time and money saver when work is being done on the system. We recommend either marking off your tank hole locations with stakes or better yet, installing risers to bring the openings to surface level so no digging is required.
FLUSH RESPONSIBLY

Basically, you should only be flushing toilet paper down the toilet. It's meant to break up in you septic system. Everything else, from other hygiene products to paper towels needs to go in the garbage; your system simply can't process them.
OIL IS BAD FOR YOUR PIPES, WORSE FOR YOUR SEPTIC SYSTEM

Just like foreign objects in the toilet, grease and oil simply don't break up the way they need to in your septic system. We know it's easier to throw that bacon grease in the garbage disposal, but it REALLY is bad and will eventually cause expensive problems.
SAME GOES WITH OTHER STRONG CHEMICALS

Reasonable use of household cleaners, soap, bleach and disinfectants are fine, but keep drain cleaner to an absolute minimum and completely avoid solvents, paints, floor cleaners, motor oil and such out of your drain. It's horrible for your septic system and bad for the environment.
ONLY GRASS NEAR SEPTIC COMPONENTS!

It's important that deep rooting plants, especially trees, are not planted near any of your septic components. Roots from these plants WILL damage your system.
OUR MOST COMMON QUESTIONS
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I GET MY TANK PUMPED OUT?

The general rule of thumb is every 3-5 years, though factors such as the size of your household, long-term guests, inadequate bacteria levels in the system and a improperly working leaching fields can speed up that time frame. If you're not sure, call us out for an inspection.
WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON SYMPTOMS OF A PROBLEM?
  • Pooling water near leaching field and beyond
  • Foul odor emitting from tank or leaching field vicinity
  • Drains draining slowly
  • Sewage backup in drains and toilets
  • Grass around leaching field is exceptionally green
HOW DO I LOCATE MY SEPTIC SYSTEM?
Most newer septic systems will have access lids that are visible near ground level. If there is no access lid or other visible signs of a tank, it's often helpful to contact the El Dorado County Environmental Management office at (530) 621-5300 (Placerville) or (530) 573-3450 (South Lake Tahoe) as there will likely be a permit on record with information on the system's location. If there's no record available, simply give us a call and we'll help you locate your system.
IS IT IMPORTANT TO INSTALL RISERS IF MY ACCESS LIDS ARE NOT CURRENTLY VISIBLE?
Having risers installed is well worth the investment as it will save significant time and money both finding your tank in the future and saving the hassle of having to dig it up every time you need your tank pumped. If you're at elevation, it's also possible that frozen ground in the winter could make it nearly impossible to dig out if a situation came up that your tank NEEDED to be pumped immediately.
SINKS AREN'T DRAINING. IS MY TANK FULL?

It may or may not be. Generally, if only one drain is slow but the rest in your house are okay, it's going to be a clogged drain. We'd recommend a plunger. If all of your drains are slow however, it's probably a pretty good time to get your tank checked.
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Address

A.C. Septic Service
3644 Ellie Allie
Placerville, CA 95667
Phone: (530) 444-9369
Email: info@acsepticservice.com

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