Septic Tank and System Maintenance Tips for Summer

Summertime. Many Americans experience nostalgia as they think of their childhood summers, from playing in the sprinklers to swimming to exploring the nearby woods. Between kids coming home in clothes that need an immediate washing to visitors in your home, this season of relaxation and fun has your septic system working overtime. And, here in Boise, Idaho, summer is when we experience the most rain! Your residential or commercial septic system is under a lot of excess stress from all of these factors. Some simple maintenance tips can help prevent a septic disaster that could lead to needing a septic system repair, and we'd like to share our best tips and tricks with you today. 

  1. Conserve water. This may be a no-brainer, especially during a year when we all expected a drought, but a conserving water is extremely important. A septic tank can only hold so much water at one time, and can overflow or backup into your home if it's not given time to drain. Repairing or replacing leaky faucets and toilets are a good place to start, as well as teaching your kids to turn the water off while brushing their teeth. It's also beneficial to avoid washing all of your laundry on the same day; that way, your septic system can drain after each load, allowing it to catch up and keep up with the demands of a fun summer. 

  2. Schedule Septic Tank Care, Inspection, and Maintenance. As sewer and septic experts, we recommend getting your septic system cleaned and pumped by a professional every 2-5 years. This eliminates the risk of build up and reduces the chances of a waterlogged drain field or other unpleasant mishaps.

  3. Use a No-Flush List. Friends, family, and house guests may need to be educated about what items cannot be flushed down the toilet or kitchen sink. Your list should include grease, cat litter, facial tissue, feminine products, coffee grounds, and plastic. All of these materials can clog your grease trap and lead to backup and overflow; simply tossing these items in the trash is a much, much easier way to go. 

  4. Watch Out For Trees. Most people don't think about it, but trees should be a minimum of 30 feet from your septic tank and drain field. Roots can grow much more rapidly than you think, and can ruin your drain field or even crack the septic tank itself. 
Following these easy tips can help prevent a septic emergency, leaving you with the stress-free, emergency-expense-free summer you've been dreaming of enjoying. We serve Boise, Melba, Kuna, Eagle, Meridian, Middleton, Caldwell, Nampa, McCall, Emmett, Idaho, and all surrounding areas. Fill out our online contact form or give ASAP Septic a call at 

Lift Stations: What Are They, and Why Are They Important?

The lift station is the workhorse of a sewage system: without them, most sewage systems would backup and fail, causing catastrophic health and sanitation hazards. But, your average American doesn't know what a lift station is, much less the role it plays in maintaining sanitation and health in the United States. 

What is a Lift Station? 
In short, a lift station is a system that moves wastewater or sewage from a low elevation to a higher elevation. In layman's terms, it's the thing that allows us to transport sewage from our homes and businesses to a wastewater treatment plant. It's an underground mechanical system that's connected to the sewer network. 

Lift stations are composed of a wastewater receiving well, motors, a power supply system, submersible pumps, pipes and valves, an odor control system, and a control and alarm system. They are typically located underground because of the potential health risks; sewage contains bacteria and other biological hazards, and stored sewage can release poisonous gases like hydrogen sulfide and methane. 

How Does a Lift Station Work?
Sewage is transported by an underground network of pipes to be stored in a large pit. A sensor in the pit detects when the wastewater reaches a certain level, which then activates the submersible pump and power source to pump the sewage out towards the treatment plant. This keeps our sewage system running smoothly; local lift stations are often the reason we have reasonable sanitary standards. 

Obviously, lift stations play an enormous role in human health within our communities. Lift stations also reduce the initial construction costs in our community; without lift stations, we would be forced to rely on gravity to direct wastewater and sewage to treatment plants, requiring us to excavate 10+ feet to install sewer lines all over our communities. 

ASAP Septic services all residential and commercial sewage lift systems in Kuna, Cascade, Featherville, Idaho City, and throughout southwest Idaho. We inspect pumps and wash out tanks to make sure there is no scum left inside that could harm these expensive and important pumps. Our services plays a critical role in managing wastewater and sewage and keeping septic systems running properly. Any problems with a lift system, including broken or damaged pumps, leaves potential for major problems, including health hazards. This is why regular lift station servicing is so important. Although it's not something most people ever think about, we are passionate about keeping our communities clean and healthy through our services. 

For more information about our services in Boise, Mountain Home, Payette, and all surrounding areas, give us a call at (208) 991-7184 or fill out our online contact form

Financing Your Residential Septic Tank in Boise, ID

There are many advantages to being on a septic system, including the overall lower costs compared to being on city water and the reduced impact on the environment. But, especially for new homes being built, the up-front costs of installing a septic tank can be difficult to come up with. At ASAP Septic, we aim to provide both top-tier services and to empower our clients with the information they need to make the right decisions for their families. Today, we'll be discussing financial aid options you can utilize if you are considering adding a septic system to your home. Options for private homeowners include: 
Home Equity Loan
A home equity loan is an option, but isn't one that can work for every family. A home equity loan will require a credit check and a verification of income to qualify, and you must have available equity in your home. However, most families don't use this option due to the fact that septic tank repair and replacement generally don't add up to enough of an expense to justify a home equity loan. 

Personal Loan
This is the most commonly used option for home improvement loans. Personal loans have fixed interest, but they also typically require a credit check and income verification, so that's something to keep in mind as you pursue options. 

State and Federal Funding
Although state and federal funding aren't available to just anyone, certain demographics will benefit from looking into these options to finance your septic tank. Elder clients (ages 62 and older) may quality for grants dedicated to aiding the elderly, and the USDA offers loans for low-income families in rural areas. These rural area loans are have low interest rates and are specifically for septic systems; however, the household income must be less than half of the median income of the area to qualify, so you will need to be aware of how your income compares to the average for your area. 

Although installing a septic system may seem daunting from a financial standpoint, there are options that can help ease the financial burden. We hope this article helps get your wheels turning and help you realize that there are more sources of aid than you may have previously known about. With any questions or for more information, contact us or give us a call at (208) 991-7184 today! We serve Boise, Meridian, Kuna, Nampa, Caldwell, Emmett, Middleton, Melba, McCall, Idaho, and all surrounding areas. 

Real Estate Inspections and Septic: What You Need to Know

The real estate market here in the Boise, ID area has been HOT for the majority of the year. If you are looking to sell, how is a great time to do so, especially as the market has begun to slow down and experts are predicting prices to slowly settle back down. If your home has a septic tank and you're planning to sell, we cannot stress enough how important it is for you to get your septic system inspected to prevent surprise costs and repairs. 

If you are a homeowner looking to sell a property with a septic system, here are a few things you should know: 

  • Septic tanks should be inspected and pumped out ever 2-5 years; doing so will prevent problems such as showers, sinks, and bathtubs not draining, or toilets backing up into the shower or tub, or septic leakage in the yard. None of these are pleasant scenarios to deal with, and regular septic inspections can prevent all of these problems. 
  • Finding a problem during inspection can prevent problems from becoming more complex or difficult to deal with; problems left unchecked may require an entire septic tank, system, and drain field replacement, which is far more costly than regular inspections and minor repairs.
  • It is EXTREMELY important to keep your system in good condition as you prepare to sell. An inspection will be performed during closing, and buyers may back out of the contract if a problem is found; alternatively, you may be required to fix it, so getting ahead of the problem can save you time and stress. 
  • A general home inspector may not have the knowledge and training to properly inspect your septic leach field, so hiring a professional septic contractor like ASAP Septic for your real estate septic inspection will give you a much more accurate idea of potential issues you may encounter. 
  • The cost of inspection depends on the size of your septic tank. Contact us for a free estimate. 
  • The seller is typically required to pay for septic system repairs, but this can be negotiated in the contract. The buyer does have a legal right to back out of a contract if an agreement on repairs cannot be reached, so keep that in mind.  
  • In Idaho, home sellers MUST disclose any known issues to potential buyers; if your septic system has an issue after closing that you were aware of, you WILL be required to pay for the entire cost of the repairs. 
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home with a septic system, hiring a professional with the appropriate knowledge and expertise will give you the peace of mind you need during the hectic time of buying and selling real estate. At ASAP Septic, we take pride in helping you detect any potential problems, and offer affordable repair options to give you the best experience possible here in Boise, ID. Give us a call at (208) 991-7184 for more information today. 

Hydro Jetting Services: How Does It Work, and When Do I Need It?

Hydrojetting is one of those terms that's often thrown around sewer and septic professionals, and as experts who have been in the industry for three decades, we understand the value of helping our clients know exactly what we're talking about, and breaking down specific terminology so our clients can make informed decisions to benefit their home. Today, we'll be discussing hydro jetting: what exactly the term means, and how to know when it should be used. 

What is hydro jetting? 

Hydro jet services are performed by running up to 200 feet of a hydro jet line through septic and sewer pipes and plumbing. As the name implies, a special nozzle is at the end of the line that can be threaded through the pipes, once the nozzle reaches the clog, water is sprayed out of it at a pressure of up to 4,000 pounds per square inch. This extremely high-pressure spray effectively blasts everything off of the inner surface of the pipe, effectively cleaning it of clogs, any built up grease or mineral deposits, and sludge that could be reducing the flow of your drain. 

When should you use hydro jetting services? 

When you notice that drains aren't clearing as quickly, or sewage or sinks begin to back up, your first step should be to use a plunger to see if you can dislodge the clog. Most clogs are caused by food or toilet paper that has become stuck somewhere along the sewer line. If the plunger doesn't work, snaking is a logical next step. If your clog remains unresolved, it's a good time to use professional hydrojetting services. 

If you can't seem to figure out the cause of the blockage, we recommend a drain or sewer line camera inspection. This can be very telling and help you nail down the root cause of the clog very quickly, and your team of professionals will be able to determine whether hydro jetting can solve the issue. 

While hydrojetting is a good option when you experience clogs, preventative maintenance can prevent the headache and stress of major issues. Especially in kitchen lines where a garbage disposal is used, or in households where greasy pans are frequently rinsed out in sinks, or in commercial restaurant kitchen that have a high volume of drain usage, getting your sewer pipes regularly hydro jetted--perhaps once per year--will prevent clogged drains from forming, and can proactively keep these issues from arising. 

At ASAP Septic, we serve clients in Boise, Mountain Home, Payette, ID, and all surrounding areas. Fill out our online contact form or give us a call at (208) 991-7184 for more information today! 

Your Septic System and the Environment in Boise, ID

An aspect of owning a residential or commercial property with a septic tank that many potential owners don't realize is that properly maintained septic systems are extremely environmentally friendly! If being green and caring for our planet is a priority, consider installing a septic tank. Septic tanks have many advantages, including: 

  • affordability--even considering the cost of septic system design, installation, and maintenance, having a septic system is actually cheaper than being on the public sewage line!
  • durability--septic tanks are built to last, and, if properly maintained, can last up to 50 years!

Additionally, because of the way a septic system works, it's an eco-friendly option. Here are a few reasons septic systems better serve our ecosystems: 

The elimination of waste. Septic tanks are a bacterial playground, where anaerobic metabolic processes are happening like crazy! The microbial ecosystem inside of a septic tank breaks wastes down, compacting them to create more space for other wastes. This is the primary reason you only need to pump your tank every 2-5 years, depending on usage: those bacteria are working for you, 24/7, and that breakdown eliminates a significant amount of waste! 

Naturally filtered wastewater. The leach or drain field of a septic system allows water to seep back into the ground. As this wastewater trickles through the layers of soil and rock, it is naturally filtered and purified. By the time it reaches the water table, the water has been naturally cleaned! This is an amazing process, and allows water to re-enter the water cycle without the use of harsh chemicals. It also aids to naturally replenish the water table. 

Good for surrounding vegetation and wildlife. Especially in rural areas where public sewage systems don't reach, installing miles of pipes can add up to disturb a significant amount of land. In contrast, installing a septic system disturbs a much smaller area, and allows indigenous plants and wildlife to flourish undisturbed. 

At the end of the day, when it comes to ecological impact, a septic system is definitely the better option. However, dealing with biological waste is always an area in which a team of experts will serve you well. A poorly installed or constructed septic system can lead to far greater issues within a few years, and where biological waste is concerned, that can quickly cause health and safety hazards. At ASAP Septic, we utilize our years of expertise to best serve our clients and keep things running smoothly. Fill out our online contact form or give us a call at (208) 991-7184 with any questions or for more information today!