Most homeowners don’t give a second thought to flushing a toilet, running the garbage disposal, or taking a shower. However, when they suddenly start smelling the pungent odor of raw sewage permeating their property and home, or they see waste backing up into their toilets or coming up through their drains, they find themselves in a state of panic. Why? – Because they realize that there is a pretty good chance that there is an issue with their cesspool or septic tank.
Septic issues can happen to anyone, and to say they are a hassle is putting it mildly. These issues are not only costly, but they can pose definite health hazards. Waiting until your septic system is completely overwrought to have it pumped can wreak havoc on your home – and your pocketbook. And, unfortunately, even with routine maintenance and proper care, a cesspool or septic tank can back up.
Fortunately, there are some tell-tale signs that indicate it’s time to call a cesspool company to have your system assessed and pumped before the damage becomes severe.
Here’s a look at some of the most obvious indications that your cesspool or septic tank is nearing capacity.
The Drains are Slow
If you find yourself standing in a pool of water while you’re taking a shower, or your sink is filling up while you’re washing the dishes, it could be a sign that your septic system is near full. Most people think that slow-moving drains are the result of a clog. While yes, a clog might definitely be to blame, the underlying problem could be much more serious than a collection of hair or soap scum.
If you have tried to clear out your drains, whether by using a plunger, pouring a septic-safe cleanser down the drains, or you have tried using a snake to clear them out and your drains still remain clogged, there’s a very good chance that your system is near or at the full line. The same is true for slow flushing toilets! If it seems like the water is moving down your toilets slower than it normally does, a full septic tank or cesspool could be to blame.
Pools of Water
It’s not unusual for pools of water to develop in your lawn after a big rainstorm; however, if you notice that a small pond has popped up in your lawn in the area around your septic system’s or cesspool’s drain field, it’s a safe bet that there is an overflow.
When the tank reaches its capacity, solid pieces of waste can clog piping in the drain field. When this happens, liquid will be pushed up to the surface. The result is a pool of water in your lawn. So, if you see an unexplained pond in your yard – especially if it’s around the drain field – your best bet is to call a cesspool company and have the system pumped. Ignoring the problem won’t make it go away. Over time (and that time is much shorter than you might think), that pool of water will grow and could potentially flood your home. That’s an issue you definitely don’t want to contend with.
A Pungent Odor
There is no denying the scent that is associated with a full septic tank or cesspool. If you’ve smelled it before, you will have no trouble identifying the odor. Even if you haven’t smelled the scent before, you will have no trouble mistaking it.
Septic systems and cesspools collect all of the wastewater that comes from your home. This includes anything that you flush down the toilets, water that flows down shower, bath and sink drains, and even the water from your washing machine and dishwasher. All of that wastewater combined with any chemicals (detergents, soaps, etc) creates a noxious odor that is can’t be mistaken – or ignored. Hopefully you catch the odor while it’s still in your yard; however, if your septic system is really full, that foul smell can work its way up through drains and toilets and infiltrate your home.
If you get a waft of sewage, call a cesspool company right away!
A Super Green Lawn
You might pride yourself on having a green thumb; however, a super green lawn isn’t always something to be proud of. For instance, if the greenness of your lawn is the result of an overflowing septic system or cesspool, you aren’t going to want to reveal to the neighbors your tricks for achieving healthy grass.
When a drain field starts overflowing, wastewater pushes out of it. Though you might suspect that the water would damage the lawn, grass is actually incredibly adaptable. The result: an overly lush lawn that surrounds the drain field of your septic system.
If your septic system is working properly, the grass around it should look the same as the rest of your lawn. If it’s a vibrant green, it’s fuller than the rest of your lawn, and it seems to be growing at a quicker rate than any other part of your yard, it could be an indication of a system that needs to be tended to. The system might be full and overflowing, or it could have a leak and water could be seeping out into your yard.
Last but not least (and certainly the grossest) sign that your septic system is overflowing is the backup of sewage. Usually, drains and toilets on the lower levels of your home will be the first to experience a sewage backup. As soon as you see anything that resembles sewage, call a trusted cesspool company as soon as possible!
If you reside in Westbury and you need to have your septic tank pumped, call Long Island Cesspool at (631) 529-2149 right away! We are located near all points of interest in this beloved Nassau community, including Old Westbury Gardens and the NYCB Theater at Westbury. We’ll make sure a technician will be at your location to assess and service your system, no matter what time of the day or night!