Follow these important guidelines:
Know where all of your septic system components are located. This is a crucial first step in proper septic system maintenance. Schedule an “Existing System Evaluation” with a certified Onsite Wastewater Inspector if you do not know where the septic tank, distribution lines, and drainfield are located. Visit the Department of Oregon website for a list of Certified Onsite Wastewater Inspectors.
Check for sludge and scum levels in your septic tank. When 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 bottom of the outlet tee, your tank needs to be pumped. You can measure this yourself, or you can hire a certified Onsite Wastewater Inspector to check it for you. Have regular septic system inspections completed by a certified Onsite Wastewater Inspector.
Typical gravity-fed systems should be inspected at least every three years. Alternative treatment technology systems (ATTs) and sand filter systems should be inspected every year**.
**Owners of ATT and sand filter systems, installed after Jan. 1, 2014, must maintain a Service Contract with a certified maintenance provider. The maintenance provider must inspect the system at least once every year and submit a report and required fees to the DEQ.