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The Care and Feeding of Septic Tanks

I met with a septic pumping company this morning as an inspection for one of our pending transactions where we are representing the buyer. Unlike a connected sewer system, a septic system requires a little more attention. They recommend:

  • The system should be pumped every three years- this is a 1500 gallon
    system.
  • Nothing non-biodegradable should go into the system. This include
    feminine hygiene products.
  • Recommend RidEx added to system once a month (an enzyme).If there is a garbage disposal, add three tomatoes once a month (15 days
    after the RidEx).
  • Use liquid dish and laundry soap. Powders only degrade about 40% rather
    than about 99% for liquid soaps.

The buyer also has to be aware that if the City decides run a connected sewer system up the street, there is a likelihood that the owner will be forced to pay (just as an owner would if the City paved an unimproved street).Portland Real Estate Blog

2 Comments on “The Care and Feeding of Septic Tanks

  1. “Three tomatoes once a month.”

    No oil or vinegar?

  2. I have heard several totally conflicting opinions from various experts about septic systems. One said use Rid-X, several said it was useless. Some say disposals should never be used, some say they should always be used to “feed” the bacteria. But I personally have never heard anyone claim the tank should be pumped on a set schedule. Everyone I have hired said one should pump as necessary, depending on how heavily used the system is, i.e. how many people are in the house. YMMV.

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