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Homeowner not sold on septic-tank maintenance

Costly additive, pumping every 2 years raise suspicion
Published on Apr 8, 2008

Dear Barry, We received a letter from the company that pumped our septic tank when we bought our home last year. They recommended that a household of two people should pump the septic tank every one-and-a-half to two years. They also recommended a septic additive that they sell for $30 per gallon. It's supposed to break up the solids in the tank, and they claim it's better than the kind you buy at the hardware store. According to my neighbor, the tank should be pumped every five years. What's the best advice for maintaining our septic system? --Larry Dear Larry, The septic company's maintenance advice is better for them than for you. It improves their bank balance and does nothing to benefit your septic system. On average, septic tanks should be pumped every three to five years, depending on the size of the tank, the number of family members contributing waste to the system, and the kinds of solids that go down the drain. Most solids that enter the system are decomposed by ...

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