How Septic Systems Work

Discover the essentials of septic tank functionality and the critical need for regular maintenance.
Ray's twilight Septic Service Pumping Truck

A septic tank cleans and gets rid of the wastewater from your home.

It does this using nature to do most of the “dirty work” for you.

What makes up a Septic System?

A septic system like this is usually made up of a septic holding tank and a septic drain field, also called an absorption field. It collects solids and pushes wastewater out into the drain field to act as a septic filter.

How does the waste water filter through?

As wastewater flows from your house into the septic tank, any heavy solids sink down to the bottom to create a layer of sludge. All the lighter solids like oil and grease will float to the top of the tank, forming what’s known as a scum layer.

Wastewater that accumulates in the septic tank will flow out through perforated pipes, allowing it to be spread among the septic drain field, which is usually a gravel-filled pit. This drain field does most of the water treatment, as the gravel and soil help to remove any harmful bacteria, toxins, undesired chemicals or particulates, and more.

Why is it so important to regularly pump your septic tank?

You will need to regularly pump your septic tank to remove excess sludge and scum in order to keep it from piling up. Without a regular septic tank cleaning, the solids that are supposed to stay inside the septic tank will flow out into the septic drain field. Left unchecked, this can clog your entire system, including the septic drain field, and lead to total failure.

Is your septic tank full or ready to be pumped?

Schedule a septic Tank Pump