Septic System Mistakes To Avoid

2 Things To Understand About The Cesspool Attached To Your Septic Tank

by Melinda Crawford

If you have a septic system, you need to make sure that you take proper care of your septic tank and your cesspool. If you don't take proper care of your septic tank, it could lead to damage and failure of your septic tank, which is really hard to repair.

1. How Cesspools Work

How cesspools work varies between older septic systems and newer septic systems.

Older Systems

Many older systems have both septic tanks and cesspools. With older systems, the cesspools were responsible for holding a high amount of water that had filtered from the septic system. The cesspool holds water until it naturally drains or percolates through the perforated walls of the cesspool into the nearby soil. This is a natural way to filter out the waste in a cesspool.

With older systems, where the cesspool was an integral part of the septic system, waste can build up not only inside of the septic tank but inside of the cesspool as well. Just like the waste in the septic tank, the only way to get rid of the waste in the cesspool is by pumping it.

Newer Systems

With newer septic systems that have higher capacities, cesspools are only used in an overflow capacity. That means only when the septic tank gets more waste than it can handle does it flow into the cesspool.

If your septic tank is properly sized for the number of people in your home, and you don't have any water leaks, this should not happen very often. With newer systems, the cesspool doesn't need to be pumped that often, because waste doesn't make its way into the cesspool except in cases of emergency or high water usage.

2. When to Pump the Cesspool

How often you should pump the cesspool depends upon the type of set-up that you have. If you have an older system, where the cesspool supplements the small septic tank, and waste is regularly transferred to the cesspool, you are going to need to pump the cesspool more often. With this kind of set-up, you should have the cesspool pumped each time you have the septic tank pumped.

If you have a newer system, you should have your cesspool levels checked every time you have your septic tank pumped. However, since your cesspool is only used in cases of emergency, more than likely it will not be necessary to have the cesspool pumped each time you have the septic tank pumped.

If you have a cesspool attached to your septic tank, make sure that you understand how your septic system is set-up and how often you need to pump the cesspool as well as your septic tank. A cesspool pumping and septic tank company can evaluate your septic tank for you and help you figure this information out.