While we often take our cesspool for granted, managing your cesspool is a necessary part of caring for your house or place of business.  You must maintain and pump your tank every so often to make sure your cesspool doesn’t overflow, cause slow drainage, or backup. Below, we describe for you the main steps involved in managing your cesspool and some important signs to look for that may mean trouble.    

Maintaining Your Tank

Tank maintenance is crucial to make sure your sewer system remains healthy and that your cesspool doesn’t overflow or malfunction. There are a few key strategies that you can implement to maintain your cesspool tank and prevent clogs.  

  1. Whenever there is a leaky faucet, toilet, or other fixture, repair this leak quickly because the excess water can cause slow draining, back up, and even fill up your cesspool.  A leak left unfixed may lead to needing your cesspool pumped prematurely.  
  2. Don’t put any items down your drain that it cannot handle. This will lead to both clogs and prematurely filling up your cesspool with solid waste. You’d be surprised how quickly a cesspool can become full when solid items are filling it up daily.  Your cesspool cannot handle grease, oil, coffee grounds, baby wipes, and other solids. Also, it’s best not to use a garbage disposal, even though it sounds like a good idea, to ensure that solids do not clog your drains and cesspool.  
  3. Make sure to protect your cesspool from rainwater that can overflow a cesspool.  Check to see that your gutters and drainpipes aren’t near your tank flowing into your cesspool.  Importantly, when installing your cesspool, make sure your cesspool isn’t on a hill such that rainwater flows directly into your cesspool.  It’s best to put your cesspool on level ground or where rainwater flows away from the cesspool.  

You can also perform a basic inspection of your cesspool to check to see that your cesspool isn’t overflowing and make sure to hire a professional every three years to inspect your cesspool.  Every three years is a great time to schedule pumping, remove solid waste, and prevent clogs.   

Pumping Your Cesspool

The next step to effectively managing your cesspool is to pump it when necessary. Pumping your cesspool is important in order to rid your cesspool of solid waste that has likely built up over time, no matter how careful you have been. You can pump your cesspool every three years before it gets filled or you can wait for a few signs that indicate your cesspool is full.  If you own a business, you may want to pump your cesspool early before it disrupts your business or daily flow of activity. 

There are a few telltale signs that your cesspool or septic tank is overfilled and needs to be pumped.

  1. If you notice any water overflowing into your yard surrounding your tank, this is a sign that your tank is overfilled.  
  2. Another sign is a bad, continuous odor.  All types of water and waste are disposed into your septic tank, from toilet waste to sink water, and this will create a nasty smell if your tank is overflowing with water.  A bad odor is a sure sign that your tank needs to be pumped.  
  3. Drains that are still slow after unclogging them may be due to an over-filled cesspool or septic tank.  
  4. You may notice that your lawn is extremely healthy over your septic tank.  This means water is overflowing in that area. The lawn over your septic tank should appear the same as the lawn throughout your yard. 
  5. If you have drains banking up, this is a sure sign that your septic tank is full and needs to be pumped.  

Having any of these signs means you should immediately call A&L Cesspool for an evaluation and to get your cesspool pumped before you have a major mess on your hands.  While you can wait for these signs to pump your cesspool, it’s best to hire our experts once every three years for regular pumping.  Call 718-729-3018 and schedule an inspection today!