Winter months can be detrimental to your septic system in winter. It can be slow for residential pumping and septic system installation due to the limitations of digging in the frozen ground. However, emergency work is often more frequent due to frozen lines or backups. These emergencies are like all other emergency situations. They tend to occur during holidays, or, as luck would have it, when the weather is at its worst. We have learned that planning ahead is the best way to avoid problems in our many years of experience as a septic service. The Boy Scouts say “Be Prepared.” Today, we share some tips that will help you avoid a septic backup during the winter holidays. Continue reading to find out more.
Cold Temperatures & Septic Systems
Let’s start by discussing the impact of temperature on your system. Temperature can affect the flow rate and mixing in your septic system in winter. It also influences the nitrification process, which is the process where your waste is degraded by the bacteria living in your septic tank. The microbes responsible for removing sewage from your system are less active in winter than they are during the warmer months. Therefore, your waste will be processed at lower temperatures.
Your tank is usually buried below the ground so the temperature is always the same as above. In fact, it is often 10-20 degrees warmer than above ground temperatures. It’s important to monitor the temperature, especially in low-slope septic systems or systems with large volumes tanks or components that are connected in a series and may be partially or fully surrounded by frozen soil.
Frozen Lines – Tips & Solutions
You can experience freezing if you have a cabin, rental property or water softener. Slow running water can cause ice buildup in drain lines and eventually blockage. If you are a full-time resident, your waste water’s freezing point can be raised by regular household use and frequent warm water usage. This will help to maintain biological activity in your tank and prevent it from freezing.
Install insulated sewage pipes if you are installing a new system. The piping is encased with an insulating foam sandwiched between a polyethene exterior cover. It is easy to install and lasts a long time. Other options are available at a lower cost, but these should be installed right away.
You can freeze your drain fields and pipes in several ways for existing systems.
- Keep your drain field clean and keep it from freezing. In October, stop mowing this area. The longer grass will retain winter snow and provide insulation above your septic tank.
- To prevent freezing, you can also place an insulating layer made of straw or leaves over the area.
- You should not park your car or drive on the ground where your septic system is located. This is essential to prevent pipes and lines from shifting or breaking.
- You can rent cabins or RVs if your home will be closed for the winter months. Be sure to turn off the water supply and drain the water lines completely. Turn on all taps, leave them open, and drain the pressure tank in the septic system.
- We recommend that you pump the septic tank before closing down cabins or homes during winter months.
It doesn’t take much to keep your septic system in winter in good working order. You can prevent freezing by taking simple measures such as insulating pipes, shutting off water lines and running hot water regularly at your rental property. ).
You don’t have to panic if you find yourself in a freezing situation this winter. Just give us a shout. Our high pressure jet can be used to thaw frozen lines and remove obstructions. Our team is available on weekends and nights to ensure everything runs smoothly.
Contact Greenbar Now
Greenbar Excavation has been providing quality excavation services to central Oregon for over ten years. We understand the importance of knowing your project. Greenbar Excavation is a fully licensed, insured, and accredited Excavation company based in Prineville, Oregon. Greenbar Excavation is one of the top Excavation companies in Central Oregon. Don’t look any further, go with the company with your best interest in mind! We offer a multitude of services which include:
- Septic pumping
- Drainage Services
- Landscape prep
- Site grading
- Foundation excavation
- Concrete/ prep finish
- Utility trenching
- Septic tank replacement
- Complete septic system replacement