If you see heavy sludge floating on the top of your drain field, inspect the concrete baffles inside your septic tank right away. If the baffles deteriorate, solid waste will build up on the surfaces of the baffles or it will pass through to the drain field. Learn more about baffles and how to repair them below. This is an important part of septic tank maintenance and can keep your system healthy.
Why Do Baffles Deteriorate?
Concrete can deteriorate or break down when exposed to water, metal, and chemicals. If your septic system comes with a metal tank or processes a lot of chemicals and liquid waste, it can cause the baffles to deteriorate or corrode. Corroded baffles can cause a number of issues for you.
The failing components will allow large amounts of waste to enter the drain field and overflow into it. The waste may also back up into your home's plumbing system, including the fixtures leading to your main sewer line. Your entire septic system could fail if it clogs up with heavy waste.
You can keep the waste in your drain field from getting worse or backtracking into your home by having your tank's baffles inspected.
How Do You Repair Your Baffles?
You will want to contact a septic tank inspector and have them look into your septic tank for you. An inspector will generally need to remove the lids from your septic tank to access the baffles and tees inside it. If you see grass or plants growing over the top of the tank, try to remove the debris before the inspector arrives at your home.
During the inspection, a contractor will examine the physical condition of each baffle and tee. If the devices look corroded or severely deteriorated, an inspector may suggest you replace them. An inspector may also suggest you change your concrete baffles to PVC or another material that doesn't break down easily when exposed to waste and chemicals. If you wish to learn more about PVC or other options, consult an inspector immediately.
After an inspector replaces the baffles and tees, they may suggest you pump the tank, even if it's not time to do so. Three to five years is commonly when most homeowners clean their tanks. You may want to clean your tank now to keep the baffles in good shape.
If your septic tank or drain field require any other services, a contractor will inform you about them.
You can learn more about your septic tank and baffles by contacting a local inspector. Ask them about septic tank maintenance.