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Five Signs of Septic Tank Backup You Shouldn’t Ignore

Septic tank backup is more than unpleasant–it’s potentially dangerous. Human waste is never safe to interact with. Most severe septic tank issues can be avoided if you keep an eye out for common problems. Noticing the symptoms before a full-blown failure can save you a lot of money while keeping you and your family healthy.

1. Persistent Slow Drains

Slow drains in your house could be a sign of septic tank backup. In the interests of not jumping to conclusions, however, you should treat all slow drains as clogs at first. Take the appropriate measures to deal with a stuck drain. If boiling water or drain cleaner doesn’t fix the problem, however, the cause could be deeper. A full or poorly working septic system can’t drain your pipes effectively. Reach out to a professional if your at-home drain busting solutions don’t clear up a slow drain.

2. Sulfur Stench

This one sounds like it should be easy to notice. A sulfur stench coming from your property could be shocking… but it often goes unnoticed. If the smell builds up slowly, you may get used to it before it properly registers. If you have anyone over and they mention an odor, pay close attention. It might not be the neighbors!

3. Gurgling in the Pipes

Gurgling in pipes is never good. A septic tank backup can cause gurgling in the pipes when the tank is too full of solids. Instead of smoothly emptying your pipes, things have to hiccough through the waste. This leads to uneven draining and the introduction of air into the pipes, which causes gurgling. There are other causes of pipe gurgling, including tree roots breaking into the line. No matter what the cause, pipe gurgling is always a reason to call a professional.

4. Pooling Water

Every lawn gets puddles after a heavy rain. If you notice standing water on your property that you can’t account for, be cautious. When a septic tank fails, solids can force liquids up to the surface. This standing puddle could be hazardous waste material!

The flip side to this is an overly healthy lawn over your septic tank. Your septic tank shouldn’t impact your lawn health. Any extra moisture it leaks may green up your lawn, but it’s a flaw in your septic system. If every area of your lawn is going brown except the grass over your septic system, that’s a bad sign.

5. Sewage Backup

If you have sewage backup out of your drains, it’s time to call in a septic professional! Septic tank backup is toxic, and if you see any signs of dirty, grayish (or worse, dark and thick) water coming back out of your drain, call a plumber right away. Your septic tank has officially broken down! The longer you ignore this problem, the more serious it’s going to get!

Septic tank backup is a serious issue. If you have any of these signs of leaks, failures, or sewage backup, call a professional right away. You shouldn’t have to live with even “minor” symptoms of septic tank backup and the more serious signs could put your health at risk.