Recommendations for Properly Maintaining Your Septic System
- Locate the original state approved septic design for the system installed. This can be obtained from your local town office or city hall or from NH DES or the State of Vermont.
- Know where your septic system is located and do not build any decks or other structures over any part of the system.
- Have your septic tank cleaned on a regular basis.
- If a filter is installed in your septic tank, make sure to clean it at least annually.
- If you have a garbage disposal, the system should be designed to handle it. If it is not, we recommend discontinuing the use or removal of the disposal.
- DO NOT overuse the system design. If bedrooms are added beyond what the system is designed to handle it can lead to premature failure and/or costly repairs to the septic system.
- Don't treat your septic system like a trash can. Do Not Flush: Paper products (aside from toilet paper), fat, grease or oils, disposable diapers or baby wipes (even if they say 'flushable'), cat litter, feminine hygiene products, condoms, cigarette butts, paints and varnishes, pesticides, acids, food scraps, medications, bleach or harsh chemicals, cotton swabs and coffee grounds.
Inside the House:
Outside the House:
Septic System 101
- Don't wait until your system shows signs of failure before you have your septic tank cleaned out. Recommended tank cleaning every 1 - 3 years depending on size of tank and usage.
- Septic systems generally give little warning that they are about to fail. The following symptoms often indicate the leach field is becoming clogged: >sewage odor near the septic tank or leach field, >slowly running drains and toilets (especially lower level), >sewage on the ground over leach field area (soggy area when mowing).
- Keep your septic tank cover accessible to tank cleaning and inspection. If the tank is located more than 12 inches underground we highly recommend adding a riser for easier accessibility.
- Don't attempt to repair a failing system yourself. Hire an experienced septic contractor.
- NEVER ENTER A SEPTIC TANK. Toxic and explosive gases in the tank present a hazard. Old tank can collapse. Secure the septic tank lid so children cannot open it.