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Thread: Tank was pumped, but.....

  1. #1
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    Default Tank was pumped, but.....

    I replaced a drain line from house to septic tank for a repeat customer of mine the other day.

    He had originally called me to see if I could pump the tank, which I can't/don't do. The pump truck driver told the tenant that the line needed to be replaced, because it was 3" instead of 4". I know that the standard sewer line is 4", but if 3" is OK inside of the house, why not to the septic?

    Anyway, my customer didn't bite, and called me to take a look at it. I stuck my little inspection camera inside the tank, and saw that the 3" line coming into the tank had a broken fitting on it. I recommended that the line be replaced mainly so that a tee and drop pipe could be added to the inlet pipe just inside the tank. I gave him a price, and he approved the work.

    The first time I looked at it, the water level in the tank was quite low because of the recent pumping, and I didn't pay a whole lot of attention. The second time there, I was shocked to see just how much grease and assorted solid material was floating around in the top of the tank.

    I have always been of the understanding that the main reason to get the tank pumped out regularly is to get rid of the solid material before it can get into the drainfield. Wouldn't a proper pumpout include sucking up all of these chunks of grease?
    Your Lake County FL plumber
    www.springtimeplumbing.com

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    gene bickford (12-10-2012)

  3. #2
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    Default

    an appropriate clean out of a septic tank includes removing all possible solids and effluent. if the pump truck driver only cleaned the tank from the inlet cover then they may very well have left many soldids behind. i am assuming its a single compartment tank with larger center cover, and not a two compartment tank with covers over inlet and outlet. we see that alot that some septic companies only clean from the inlet cover leaving alot of solids.

    as far as a 3'' pipe for a septic inlet line i wouldnt. i think you would just be asking for more problems in the future with a 3'' line ( and its probably against code for exterior use) since there is already evidence of grease and heavy solids in the tank. put in a new 4'' line with a risers over the inlet cover for future access and find a new company to pump out your tanks for you and your customers. hope this helps and good luck!

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    phishfood (12-10-2012)

  5. #3
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    Default

    If there are still solids there, it wasn't pumped correctly. You either need the middle lid so you can get to both sides of the baffle, or you need the inlet AND outlet lids to pump both compartments correctly. There is a crust on most tanks, but the way to tell how bad the tank is, is to check out the solids on teh bottom of the second tank.

    I did a job 2 weeks back where the solids in the secondary part were so high that they plugged the bottom end of the T baffle. Waste had to go over the top of the T which raised the level of the tank, which caused the line from the house to plug, etc...

    There are hack pumpers who just drop the hose and pump what they can get. but you need to get it all to ensure you're not getting that junk out into the leech field.

    If the secondary tank doesn't have an exposed lid, have it dug up and have that pumped. We won't pump a tank unless we can do both chambers. Its the only way to do it properly.
    Clear Drain Cleaning, LLC
    Dover, OH
    330-473-5263
    cleardraincleaning.com


  6. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to BuckeyeBowhunter For This Useful Post:

    phishfood (12-10-2012), Trent2 (12-17-2012)

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