Which Septic Tank Should You Install?

Posted on: 22 August 2018

If you want to install a septic system on your property, you should educate yourself on the available septic tank options to help you make an informed decision. Here are some of the things to include in this assessment:

The Septic Tank Material

Septic tanks come in all manner of materials; the common ones include fiberglass, metal (stainless steel), plastic (both high-density and low-density), and concrete septic tank. Each of these materials has their benefits and drawbacks so you need to explore all those before making a decision. For example, a low-density plastic tank may be cheap, but it is also susceptible to external forces and can easily be warped by soil changes around it. Another example is steel, which doesn't warp easily but easily rust or corrode.

The Septic Tank Size

The size of the septic tank is probably one of the most interesting topics when choosing a tank. Here are a few things to note when deliberating septic tank sizing:

  • A small tank may be cheaper upfront, but it requires more frequent pumping than relatively expensive large tanks
  • The number of bedrooms (which is typically proportional to the number of people in the household) determines the size of the tank to have; more bedrooms means larger tanks
  • In addition to the number of people in the household, the household habits also determine the best tank size to have. For example, those who wash their clothes more frequently may require a bigger tank than those who are rarely at home

The Legal Requirements

Most local governments have a say on the minimum size of the septic tank you should have. For example, you may be required to have at least 1,000 gallons for a four-bedroom house. Legal regulations may also determine where to install the tank (for example, not upstream of a water source). Pay attention to these requirements if you don't want to waste money relocating or upgrading your septic system soon after installation.

The Tank Configuration

Lastly, you should also consider the configuration of the septic tank before installation. This is not just a matter of taste, the configuration or shape of the tank has far-reaching ramifications. For example, an extremely shallow tank may let untreated waste escape out of it. However, the size and location of the septic field also determine which tank to have. For example, if you have a narrow space for the tank installation, you may be better off with a long and slender tank rather than a round or square one.

Speak with local plumbing services for more help.