What to do if your septic system floods.
New building developments and climate change mean that instances of flooding are more regular than ever. If your home is impacted by flooding then it’s likely that your septic system has also been affected.
How will I know if my septic system is flooded?
A flooded septic systems is not always easy to identify, however some simple indications may include:
- Bad odours around the tank and soakaway area
- Wastewater overflowing from the tank
- High sludge levels within the septic tank
- Sewage flowing up through the toilet and sinks
What to do if your septic system floods?
- Stop all non-essential water use and flush toilets as little as possible. Continue to do this until the ground is no longer flooded.
- It may be necessary to arrange to have your septic tank emptied more frequently until it’s no longer flooded. However it’s best to call us first as in some circumstances emptying the tank can cause mud or silt to be drawn into the tank or, in extreme cases, result in it lifting out of the ground!
- If your septic tank and/or soakaway becomes covered with water, keep away from the area, as standing water/wet ground/ponded water may contain untreated sewage.
- If you have put caustic or toxic chemicals in your septic tank in the past, and your system backs up into your home, be especially careful to protect your eyes, skin and lungs from the fumes.
- If sewage has backed up into the house clean the area and disinfect the floor. Use a household bleach based detergent (according to manufacturer’s instructions) to disinfect the area thoroughly. Do not put excess bleach into your septic system.
- A member of our team may be needed to inspect your system so it’s best to call us as soon as you’re aware of the flooding. Only trained specialists should clean or repair septic tanks because tanks may contain dangerous gases.
- For composting toilets or other similar approved systems, contact the manufacturer for specific advice on how flooding or power outages may affect these systems.
In an emergency, you can contact us 24hrs a day on; 0800 0519345