You're about to take a shower, but when you open the shower door, you spot sewage that has backed up into the tub. This experience can be pretty gross, and it's generally a sign that something is wrong with your plumbing system.
Here's a look at three possible causes of the backup, and what you should do about each one:
Your septic tank needs to be pumped
Oils and solids slowly build up in your septic tank. Some of these eventually break down and are washed out into the drain field, but this does not usually happen as fast as new waste accumulates. Thus, it's important to have your septic tank pumped out every three years or so. If you have a garbage disposal, you'll need to have it pumped out yearly, as the food debris will accumulate in the tank rather quickly.
If it has been a while since your tank was pumped, this may be the cause of the backup. When the tank is overfilled, water may flow back into your home rather than into the drain field. Contact a local plumbing service, and have your tank pumped. The problem should subside.
Your septic drain field is flooded
Have you had a lot of rain recently? Is your yard flooded? Have more people taken showers than normal? If any of these factors ring true, there's a chance your drain field is simply saturated with water to the point that additional water is having trouble leaving the septic tank and is flowing back into your home instead. The best way to solve this problem is to conserve water until the flooding dissipates.
There's a blockage in the line that drains your shower water into your septic tank
If you've had your tank pumped, the yard is not flooded, and yet the problem still persists, it's likely that there is a blockage in the pipes leading to the septic tank. Sometimes, blockages are caused by items that are accidentally washed down the toilet. Other times, they're caused by a build-up of grime, or even by tree roots that grow into your pipes. Have a plumber come inspect your pipes for blockages. Having them repaired should stop your sewage backup problems.
You should never ignore a sewage backup, since it is often an indication of a problem with your plumbing. If you cannot get to the root cause of the problem on your own, call a plumber promptly. The items above are three of the most common causes of backups, but you may have another less common issue contributing to your backups.
To learn more, contact a company like B & B Drain Tech Inc.