The Plumbing Contractor's Guide to Living Safely on a Property with a Septic Tank
Living on a property with a septic system comes with some risks that aren't present on properties utilizing community sewer utilities. While septic systems are safer than ever before and problems are rare, they do happen from time to time. And, most septic system accidents are completely preventable.
In order to avoid illness, injury, or death from your property's septic system, it's vital you and your family follow each of these plumbing contractor guidelines:
Never Drive a Vehicle Over or Park on Top of Any Part of a Residential Septic System
Whether you drive a small compact car or a large 4WD truck, it's vital you keep all of your family's vehicles well away from all of the septic system's underground parts. Driving or parking on the septic tank, leach lines, or drain field can result in catastrophic damage to the system. Additionally, a heavy vehicle can fall through a septic tank.
Keep Your Children and Pets Well Away from the Septic System's Parts
Even though all of the parts of your septic system are buried underground, they can still each pose a risk to children and pets. Children playing on top of an older septic tank with structural issues can fall through and drown. In addition, the dirt on the surface above a septic system's leach lines and drain field can be contaminated with harmful bacteria. To avoid these hazards, teach children to stay away from the septic system and fence off the area if you have pets.
Never Grow Edible Foods Near a Septic System
Even though there is a lot of water present in the area of your drain field, this is the last place you should ever plant any vegetables or other edibles. Foods grown in contact with soil that is also in contact with a septic system can be contaminated by harmful bacteria.
While the soil should absorb all of the wastewater well underground and bacteria should not be a problem on the surface, the risk is always there that bacteria can work their way to the surface and make your family members sick.
Never Open or Attempt to Work on Your Own Septic System
Lastly, it's vital to note that septic gasses are fatal to humans and pets. For this reason, all tank cleaning and maintenance tasks on your residential septic system need to be performed by plumbing contractors. Opening or working on a home's septic system is never a DIY project for any homeowner.