Understanding Septic Systems

Septic Tanks

What Are They?

Septic tanks are is a vital part of your water treatment system. It serves as a basin where solids accumulate and settle and will eventually get broken down by bacterial action.

A portion of the organic waste is liquefied by “natural bacterial decomposition,” and the rest accumulates at the bottom of your septic tank as a layer of sludge.

In addition, some waste like fat and oils, may float at the top of the tank and form a layer of semi-solid scum.



How Do They Work?

Most people in the city of Austin flush their toilets and never have to deal with the waste again because their sewage flows to the street and to central processing facilities. However, people in Austin usually pay $50 or more per month for wastewater service.

Those of us who live in rural areas have been forced to learn about the maintenance of the sewerage treatment facilities attached to our homes, ie- your Septic System. Usually a septic tank is connected to a drain field field. When properly maintained, most septic systems can last almost indefinitely. If you fail to maintain and inspect your system on a regular bases, it can back up and clog the drainage field. Once a drain field is clogged, septic systems will require excavation, replacement, and even replacement of drain pipes. This can result in thousands of dollars in repairs. Therefore it is vital to have your tank pumped and inspected on a regular basis.


Since solids will build up at the bottom of your tank, it is VERY important that the septic tank be pumped on a regular basis. Keep in mind, some of the sludge  that builds up is not biodegradable. If it is not pumped out, it will accumulate and build up where it can overflow unto the absorption drain field. You can avoid this by contacting Austin Septic Service and Pump on a regular basis.

free-estimates-copyHow often you pump will depend primarily on the amount of wastewater and solids that go through the system each day. It also depends on how careful you are about not throwing fats, rinds, and other garbage down the drain each day. The more solid waste thrown down the drain, the faster the tank will fill up. That’s why it’s best not to use your garbage disposal to eliminate solid wastes. It is also vital that you take care of leaky sinks or toilets that run.




The most important thing that you can do is to get your septic tank cleaned before the levels of sludge gets so high that solid materials (solid material at the bottom, or the solid scum at the top), can flow out into the drainage field. This will quickly clog the drain field pipes and the soil that they drain into. When this happens, the only cure is to dig up and replace the entire drain field. Another option is to treat the drain field with a bacteria found only in PRO-PUMP™. These unique microbes have been proven effective for over 20 years to remediate drainage issues in soil with organic build-up. Remember that PRO-PUMP is a natural product and needs some time to work. Unlike chemicals, which are harmful to the environment, the natural and safe bacteria in PRO-PUMP multiply over time.

You will also want to make certain there are live bacteria in your system at all times. The bacteria’s job is to eat and digest all of the organic waste matter in the Septic System. If there is no bacteria in you system, it will simply act as a holding tank for your waste. If it becomes full, natural digestion will not occur. That is when the system backs up.

There are several other reasons that your system can get backed up.

  • Disposal of cigarette butts, sanitary napkins, which are also biodegradable but do not readily decompose.
  • Too many people using a smaller or failing septic system.
  • Disposal of items not biodegradable in the system, like plastics.
  • High quantities of laundry waste, detergent, laundry waste, household chemicals, bleach, and products like Drano.
  • Garbage disposal grinds, which increase the accumulation of solids that settle in your septic tank.
  • Disposal of excessive amounts of grease and fats. While these are biodegradable, they need particular types of bacteria to digest them efficiently. Oil and grease-degrading bacteria can help with this.

If you have no bacteria in your system and you add enzymes to the system, it simply will not help and your system will still not work. Enzymes are simply catalysts produced by bacteria. If there are active bacteria in your system, why use enzymes?

From time to time, you should add “100% naturally occurring LIVE BACTERIA” to your system. Do not add just any kind of bacteria. Call Austin Septic Pump, your septic professional. Remember, we don’t repair broken septic systems, so unlike many other companies, we want to do everything we can to keep your system working. If we can get it working properly without extensive repairs, we will!

Call for your free estimate today. Don’t forget to ask about our church, senior, and multiple-tank discounts!

(512) 872-4343