How Much Does a Septic System Failure Cost?
If you have a house with a septic system, it's not the least bit uncommon to have a certain amount of concern regarding the health of that system. This is especially true if the system is older and hasn't been inspected in a number of years. In reality, it can cost between $10,000 and $20,000 to replace a septic system if it's left unattended until a catastrophic failure occurs. Therefore, it's much more economical to keep track of the overall health of the system as opposed to waiting for such a failure to happen.
Testing the Health of a Septic System
Thanks to modern technology, there are several different ways to check on the overall health of your system. With some routine maintenance, homeowners can enjoy having the same system for a much longer period of time than they could in the past. Much of the testing that occurs in order to determine whether a system needs to be replaced or not can be done without digging up the yard, largely through the use of items like a hydrostatic pressure gauge. This determines how much pressure is building up in the system, providing professionals with a better idea of how well it's actually performing.
Routine Maintenance is Vital
There's no doubt that the key to keeping a septic system working longer is to provide routine maintenance. In much the same way that you wouldn't drive your car for a period of 10 years without ever changing the oil, the same should be true of your septic system. In reality, the system should be serviced on an annual basis. Depending on the size of the system and how many people are living in your home, it's a good idea to have it pumped out every three to five years. Fortunately, these are all things that can be determined after the system has been inspected. It's also much more cost effective to have routine maintenance performed on the system than it is to be forced to correct a catastrophic failure by digging up the old system and installing a new one. On average, this type of maintenance only costs about $300 and as previously mentioned, can be done approximately once a year.
Installing a New System
If a new system does need to be installed, it's better to know that ahead of time than it is to be surprised by it all of a sudden. Again, it comes back to routine maintenance. With the right maintenance plan in place, it's possible for the homeowner to know that a new system will be necessary in the near future. This provides homeowners with the opportunity to save money so it's not as financially difficult as it would be to have the failure happen without any warning. In reality, it's extremely rare for a system to fail completely without warning. There are almost always warning signs. The key is getting someone to perform regular maintenance on the system that knows what to look for.
In the end, it's all about taking care of the property, including the septic system. If you're dealing with an exceptionally old system that hasn't been updated in 30 or 40 years, you might want to go ahead and replace the system as part of other upgrades to the property. At the very least, have it thoroughly inspected. The good news is that with the proper maintenance, the septic system can last for a number of years without any problems whatsoever. It almost always comes down to being prepared and doing what's necessary to keep your septic tank in good shape so that it continues to serve you well.