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We had our septic tank pumped but we're still having backups in basement shower. What could the problem be?

If you are still getting backups in your bathroom piping after having pumped the septic tank, there can be only two problems. The first is a blockage of the inside pipes leading from the fixtures to the septic tank. Drains can become blocked with sludge, roots and dirt from broken pipes. The first thing to do is to have your pipes professionally cleaned so you can be assured the pipes are fully open. If the technician encounters a problem, he can run a camera down the line and find out if the roots have created a problem with the line or if the septic tank is functioning properly.

If you have a septic tank cleaning service clear the lines and pump the tank and it’s still not working properly, then the drain field is having a problem. In addition, if the ground is saturated because of high water table or heavy rainfall, then the septic tank will not drain and it will back up into the house. A drain field can act as a spreader of the effluent or it can act as a collector of rainwater and groundwater.

When the sludge layer at the top and the bottom inside septic tank get high enough to leave the septic tank and go out into the drain field, it will plug up your drain field. The sludge in septic tanks forms a layer below the pipes and prevents the water from leeching into the ground. The same type of biodegradable matter that decomposes and falls to the bottom of a lake is what keeps the water from leeching into the aquifer. National septic standards recommend that septic tanks be pumped every three years to prevent this problem.

Once a drain field fails, you only have a few options. One is a completely new drain field and the other is to add more branches to the existing drain field and increase your capacity. You will have to check with your local government offices to learn more about the septic requirements in your area. While doing this, you should also ask them to recommend a septic tank maintenance company in your area. This way, you can get a thorough, professional evaluation and more fully understand the options available.

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