Morse Engineering and Construction Industries

Don't Let the Septic System Freeze

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, January 31, 2019
Morse Engineering and Construction Industries, LLC - Septic System in Fiskdale, Sturbridge, MA

Lack of snow cover and dropping temperatures can spell trouble for homeowners with septic systems.

Snow helps to insulate septic systems and keep them from freezing. Unfortunately, a lot of our snow cover has melted and temperatures across the state are dropping.

Here is a list of seasonal tips for homeowners on how to prevent septic system freeze-ups as the winter season progresses and how to deal with them should they occur:

  • Place a layer of mulch 8 to 12 inches thick over the pipes, tank, and soil treatment system to provide extra insulation. This can be straw, leaves, hay or other loose material that will stay in place and not become compacted. This is particularly important for new systems that were installed so late in the year that vegetative cover didn't get established. However, if the system is currently frozen, don’t add mulch now; it will delay thawing in the spring.
  • Use water—the warmer the better—if you’re worried your system is starting to freeze. Spread out your laundry schedule so you run one warm/hot load a day. Use the dishwasher and take hot baths. Do not leave water running all the time—this will overload the septic system.
  • Going away for an extended period? Have someone use warm water in the home regularly or pump out your tank before leaving.
  • Fix any leaky plumbing fixtures or appliances in your home. This will help prevent freezing problems and help your system perform better all year.
  • Keep all vehicle, animal, and people traffic off the system. This is a rule to follow all year as compacted snow and soils cause frost to go down deeper and faster. Pay special attention to the area between the house and tank.
  • Keep an eye on your system. If any seeping or ponding occurs, contact an onsite professional to help determine the cause and remedy.
  • Add more insulation to your system. This could include replacing pipe with insulated pipe, adding expanded foam panels over septic tanks, or adding more soil cover.

If your system freezes

If your septic system freezes, Morse Engineering and Construction.

Other methods used to fix a freezing problem include adding heat tape and tank heaters. Cameras can be sent down pipes to determine where freezing is occurring. If the soil treatment system is full of ice, or there is evidence of leaking, skip trying to thaw the lines leading to the treatment area as it cannot accept liquid until the area thaws in spring.

If it’s not feasible to correct a problem, the only option is using the septic tank as a holding tank until the system thaws naturally. Contact a pumper to empty the tank when it starts to fill up. In this situation, reduce water use by limiting the number of toilet flushes, taking short showers, and using the dishwasher at full capacity.

For more information, contact Morse Engineering and Construction.


Septic System Maintenance in Winter

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, January 24, 2019
Morse Engineering and Construction Industries - Septic System Construction

If you have a septic system, it’s important to know what you should and shouldn’t do around that area of the yard and indoors. There is a possibility of a septic system freezing, especially in cold areas with little snowfall. Follow these tips to reduce the chance of costly and stressful damage to your septic system this winter.

Repair leaky fixtures. Dripping sinks, showers, and toilets can result in ice forming in the pipeline between your house and septic tank.

Use hot water. Having warm water flow into the tank regularly will help prevent ice buildup. Pamper yourself with a long bath or shower with the knowledge that you’re helping the septic system!

Keep up the lawn. A healthy, thick lawn of grass or other foliage will help insulate the soil that contains the septic system.

Spread mulch. Place an 8-12 inch layer of straw mulch on top of and around the pipes, tanks, and drain field of the septic system. This will further insulate the ground and help prevent the soil from freezing.

Secure the system. Make sure the tank and pipes don’t have any cracks in them and any caps are still securely in place. Any openings can let cold air into the system.

Keep cars away. Never park any vehicles on top of your drain field. Cars will compact the soil above the septic system, which makes it easier to transfer cold below. They will also prevent insulating snow from covering the area.

If you’ve had troubles with your septic system freezing or other issues in the past, you should get the system checked out by a professional. They can help with problems such as:

Sagging pipes. Pipes that have settled into the ground unevenly will cause water to pool and possibly freeze.

Insulation installation. A sewer professional can install more extensive insulation around the tank and pipes.

Draining the system. A septic tank and pipes periodically need to be pumped and cleaned out. You should leave this task to a professional.

Waterlogged drain field. Older septic systems can cause the drain field to become flooded. In this case, consult with a professional to see what can be done in your particular situation.

Keep your septic system in good shape by getting it checked regularly. In the meantime, keep these tips in mind to help prevent freezing and damage. For more information on septic system inspection and repairs, contact Morse Engineering.

source: completehomewarranty.com


Septic Systems Inspections and Maintenance

Joseph Coupal - Thursday, January 17, 2019
Morse Engineering and Construction Industries - Septic System Construction Fiskdale, MA

Did you know that as a homeowner you’re responsible for maintaining your septic system? Did you know that maintaining your septic system protects your investment in your home? Did you know that you should periodically inspect your system and pump out your septic tank?

If properly designed, constructed and maintained, your septic system can provide long-term, effective treatment of household wastewater. If your septic system isn’t maintained, you might need to replace it, costing you thousands of dollars. And if you sell your home, your septic system must be in good working order.

Why Should I Maintain My Septic System

When septic systems are properly designed, constructed, and maintained, they effectively reduce or eliminate most human health or environmental threats posed by pollutants in household wastewater. However, they require regular maintenance or they can fail. Septic systems need to be monitored to ensure that they work properly throughout their service lives.

Saving money

A key reason to maintain your septic system is to save money! Failing septic systems are expensive to repair or replace, and poor maintenance is often the culprit. Having your septic system inspected regularly is a bargain when you consider the cost of replacing the entire system. Your system will need pumping depending on how many people live in the house and the size of the system. An unusable septic system or one in disrepair will lower your property value and could pose a legal liability.

Protecting health and the environment

Other good reasons for safe treatment of sewage include preventing the spread of infection and disease and protecting water resources. Typical pollutants in household wastewater are nitrogen, phosphorus, and disease-causing bacteria and viruses. If a septic system is working properly, it will effectively remove most of these pollutants.

How Do I Maintain My Septic System

Inspect and pump frequently

You should have a typical septic system inspected at least every 3 years by a professional and your tank pumped as recommended by the inspector (generally every 3 to 5 years). Alternative systems with electrical float switches, pumps, or mechanical components need to be inspected more often, generally once a year. Your service provider should inspect for leaks and look at the scum and sludge layers in your septic tank. If the bottom of the scum layer is within 6 inches of the bottom of the outlet tee or the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the outlet tee, your tank needs to be pumped. Remember to note the sludge and scum levels determined by your service provider in your operation and maintenance records. This information will help you decide how often pumping is necessary.

Four major factors influence the frequency of pumping: the number of people in your household, the amount of wastewater generated (based on the number of people in the household and the amount of water used), the volume of solids in the wastewater (for example, using a garbage disposal increases the amount of solids), and septic tank size.

Some makers of septic tank additives claim that their products break down the sludge in septic tanks so the tanks never need to be pumped. Not everyone agrees on the effectiveness of additives. In fact, septic tanks already contain the microbes they need for effective treatment. Periodic pumping is a much better way to ensure that septic systems work properly and provide many years of service. Regardless, every septic tank requires periodic pumping.

In the service report, the pumper should note any repairs completed and whether the tank is in good condition. If the pumper recommends additional repairs he or she can’t perform, hire someone to make the repairs as soon as possible.

What Does a Septic Inspection Include?

  • Locating the system.
  • Uncovering access holes.
  • Flushing the toilets.
  • Checking for signs of back up.
  • Measuring scum and sludge layers.
  • Identifying any leaks.
  • Inspecting mechanical components.
  • Pumping the tank if necessary.

For more information on Septic Tank Inspections, contact Morse Engineering.

EPA


Septic Tank Care and Cleaning

Joseph Coupal - Friday, January 11, 2019
Morse Engineering and Construction Industries - Septic System Construction Fiskdale, MA

The frequency of septic tank cleanings varies depending on the tank size, daily sewage intake and number of people it serves. Generally, septic tanks should be cleaned every 2 years, although it is not recommended as a “do-it-yourself” project.

Periodic pumping of the septic tank between cleanings is considered a homeowner responsibility. The need for pumping is normal and not a deficiency, however if you are in the market for a new home you may want a septic inspection. Failure to have your septic system regularly pumped may cause problems. Vehicles should not be driven or parked over septic tanks or on drainage fields. Trees and shrubbery should not be planted in the drain field either.

For more information on septic systems, contact Morse Engineering.


Happy New Year from Morse Engineering and Construction

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, January 02, 2019
Morse Engineering and Construction Industries - Home Construction

Happy New Year from Morse Engineering and Construction. We would like to thank our clients and our community for allowing our business to be part of your lives in 2018. We wish you a wonderful and prosperous 2019!

If we have had the pleasure of being your for septic or site work, we hope that we provided the highest level of service. If you are in need of septic service or site work in 2019, we hope that you consider Morse Engineering and Construction for your home or business.

It is our sincere wish that in the New Year you are surrounded by warmth, family, and friendship. From all of us here at Morse Engineering and Construction, have a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year.

Sincere best regards to you all.