SepticSmart: Maintenance

If properly designed, constructed, and maintained, your septic system can provide long-term, effective treatment of wastewater. Much of what you can do to keep your septic safe is making maintenance part of your regular routine.

Pump & Inspect Regularly

Have your septic system pumped every 2-4 years, or more frequently depending on use. Once every ten years, or before buying or selling a property, we recommend an inspection. Use a licensed professional for all system maintenance and repairs.

Keep Records

Keep records of each of your maintenance steps, as well as any repairs you make along the way. Boulder County Public Health provides records of all approved systems online for your easy reference.

Reduce Water Intake

Average indoor water use in the typical single-family home is almost 70 gallons per person per day. Dripping faucets can waste about 2,000 gallons of water each year. Leaky toilets can waste as much as 200 gallons each day. The more water a household conserves, the less water enters the septic system.

Divert roof drains and surface water from driveways and hillsides and away from septic system. Keep sump pump and house footing perimeter drains away from the system as well.

Reduce Toxics

Dispose of household hazardous waste properly. Use bleach and toilet bowl cleaners sparingly and in accordance with produce labeling. Do not use your septic system to dispose of non-degradable products such as diapers, tampons, cigarette butts, coffee grounds, or grease.

Do not poison your system and the groundwater by disposing of even small amounts of harmful chemicals down the drain. Such materials can kill beneficial bacteria that treat your wastewater. Do not use commercial septic system tank additives. These products do not help and some may hurt your system in the long run.

Protect the Surface

Do not allow anyone to drive, park, or pasture livestock over any part of your system. The surface over the absorption area should be left undisturbed with only a mowed grass cover. Avoid planting trees and shrubs within ten feet of the absorption area. Also, avoid placing a sprinkler system too close to the absorption area; this area will generally not require additional watering.

See the full list of maintenance dos and don'ts

When making repairs, ensure that you acquire the proper permits and receive final approval once the work has been completed.

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 Related Links


Contacts

SepticSmart Program

303-441-1564
Submit a question

www.SepticSmart.org

Boulder

3450 Broadway
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Hours: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. M-F

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