Keeping an eye on your septic system ahead of rainy season


There are more than two million households in Florida that depend on septic tanks. Unfortunately, poorly maintained ones could contribute to our water crisis.

With the rainy season only months away, a university in Florida wants to make sure you’re ready. They offer a few simple tips to help ensure that your system is working properly.

The University of Florida wants to make sure that you never wash items such as napkins, cotton swabs, or facial tissues. They also advise that you only have professionals pumping your sewer system and conserving water when you can.

Hurricane season will be here before we know. While you are stocking up on groceries and preparing your home, pay attention to what’s underneath – your septic tank.

Brittany Hagadorn is the owner of A-1 Affordable Plumbing. “So when the hurricane season or rainy season comes, it is even more important as stagnant water is present and stagnant water can actually flow back into your home and if for some reason you are out of town it can cause thousands of dollars in damage,” said Hagadorn.

She says that in preparation for the storm, you only need to pump your septic tank halfway and make sure the gutters don’t drain into your drainage field. There are also tell-tale signs that your sewer system is in trouble.

“Your toilet gurgles or bubbles, or you have stagnant water in your shower. These are signs that something is just not right and full. If it’s full, is it clogged, or is your septic tank not draining properly? Said Hagadorn.

By making sure everything underground is working properly, you are protecting everything else around you.

This is where the University of Florida water experts come in. Dr. Yilin Zhuang is a UF / IFAS agent specializing in water resources.

“After a storm, especially if your property is flooded, your private well can be contaminated,” said Zhuang.

In addition to wells at risk of contamination, failing septic tanks can contaminate the water with harmful nutrients and pathogens.

Governor Ron DeSantis has a budget of $ 100 million for cost-sharing grants to improve water quality, including septic tank conversions and upgrades, other sewer upgrades, and upgrades to rural and urban stormwater systems.

To learn more about private wells and wastewater treatment plants in our state from UF’s experts, you can do so here.

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