How does a septic tank pump work?
Septic systems are basically made up of two parts; the septic tank and the drain field. These waste management systems are common in rural areas and settings that lack easy access to city services. The septic tank is the main component of this type of septic system. Without the septic system, your outhouse will remain as a common site along several country lanes and back roads.
The most popular kind of septic tank is made from concrete and it is basically a rectangular box and is divided into chambers. Some septic tanks are also made from fiberglass and plastic that are much lighter than the concrete ones. It is easy to maneuver these septic tanks and you will not require heavy equipment to install them. The challenge with these designs is that they can float and hence not suitable for areas that are prone to flooding or don’t have high groundwater.
How do Septic Tanks Work?
Septic tanks work by running waste effluent via various stages inside the chambers which separate the internal makeup. The largest chamber is the first one because it collects all the wastewater from the house via the inlet pipe. The sludge (organic solids) enters the first chamber and settles at the bottom. Different bacteria break down and digest the sludge. Facultative bacteria, especially the anaerobic produce a combination of methane gas and carbon dioxide. This helps in stabilizing the sludge and stopping it from rotting. A large section of the sludge will remain at the bottom of the tank even though a small section floats to form a layer of scum.
The sludge spends a maximum amount of time being exposed by the digestive bacteria. To do this, they locate the inlet-outlet, and overflow pipes diagonally across from every other. It makes the affluent travel for a longer distance before it gets into the next processing stage. This furthers the breakdown of waste products in every phase.
Once the semi-processed wastewater out of the first chamber through the vertical pipe overflows, it will get into the second chamber. It forces the wastewater to go upwards and prevents the large solids from getting into the second chamber. The same processes that take place in the first chamber also do so in the second chamber. The microorganisms further digest and settle the organic matter. The size of the second chamber is normally 50% of the first one hence the processing period is halfway before the wastes are discharged in the drain field.
The drain field outlet is located in the opposite corner from the overflow in the 2nd chamber. Only wastewater flows in the drain field and all solids settle in any of the two septic tanks. The wastewater is purified and filtered further by the soil in the Drainfield before plant roots absorb it or it is filtered down to the groundwater table. The type of Drainfield depends on the porosity and type of soil.
Most of the septic systems use the force of gravity to support the natural flow of wastes. In case the landscape of the land doesn’t support gravity, you will be forced to use pumps. The manner in which septic tanks work is quite straightforward. They rely on time and natural processes to break down the wastes. It will protect your environment, property, and loved ones from various health hazards.