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Rain, rain go away, let my septic last another day

John the Plumber

Rain. We need it. Rain brings life to our parched soil. But too much rain can mean problems if you're on a septic system. John Nelson, owner of John the Plumber, is no stranger to these problems.

"It's a been a few years since we've had a really wet winter," he said, "but seeing as how it's looking like we're going to have another wet one this year, we're already anticipating panicked calls from homeowners whose septic is backing up."

When heavy rain soaks your drain field, the waste water coming from your septic tank will have no place to go as the ground is already saturated. The result is waste backing up into the house or out on the lawn. Signs that your system is getting ready to fail are sluggish drains and toilets and gurgling sounds from the toilet and drains. The key is to not let things get to that point if at all possible.

Since we can't control the weather and we really wouldn't want to stop the rain even if we could, what is a homeowner to do in this predicament?

"Preventive maintenance is one of the best things a homeowner can do," John says. "If your tank hasn't been pumped in the last 10 years, then get that done now. Divert rain run-off away from your leach field. Stop using your dishwasher, do laundry somewhere else, take very short showers and avoid baths if possible, do not let the water run while brushing your teeth."

John also recommends knowing exactly where your tank and deep pit or drain field is located.

"Better yet," he said, "have risers installed over your tank openings. That way you're not having to pay someone to search and dig in the middle of a septic emergency. It also gives you a few more options when it comes to finding a company to come pump. Waste Management, for example, will come pump but they won't locate or dig."

While John the Plumber no longer offers septic pumping as part of their services they do still offer septic inspections and riser installation. Give them a call at (661) 823-8031 or (760) 373-7050 and put your mind at ease so you can just enjoy the rain.