University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension System: Water Quality and the Home Landscape

Septic System

Maintaining the Septic System


Karen Filchak


Maintaining the tank involves routinely pumping the tank and annually inspecting the baffles.  A general recommendation for pumping the tank, to remove the collected solids, is every 3-5 years.  Pennsylvania State University Cooperative Extension has developed a chart which provides recommendations based on the size of the tank and number of people in the household. 

It is recommended that homes with septic systems not install or use garbage disposals.  The increased solids introduced can stress the system.  If a garbage disposal is going to be installed and used, the tank size should be increased and the tank should be pumped more frequently.

Septic system pumpout. | Toni Droscher

Regularly pumping your septic system will keep it operating at peak efficiency

Septic Systems