These are the most frequently asked questions we receive.

How often should I have my tank cleaned out?
Depending on the amount of people living on the system.
  • 1-2 people every 3 years
  • 2-4 people every 2 years
  • 5 or more every year
The tank needs to be cleaned to remove the solids before they build to a point where they will start flowing into the drainfield and cause damage which will lead to a costly repair.

Do I need to add bacteria or other additives to my system?
No, the bacteria that is needed in your system comes from the waste stream. In some cases, the additives can actually harm your system by breaking down solids and allowing them to flow to the drainfield which can cause costly repairs.

What kind of effect can my washing machine have on my system?
A HUGE ONE! Doing over excessive wash can overload your system and cause a failure. Always spread your wash out across the week to allow for maximum absorption. Always use liquid detergents rather than powders.

What type of toilet paper is best for septic tanks?
Contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary to sacrifice personal comfort to protect your septic tank. There are many types of toilet paper on the market that are perfectly safe for septic systems.

According to the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF), a nonprofit organization that tests products relating to health and the environment, the thickness and color of toilet tissue does not necessarily affect its biodegradability.

The NSF subjects the toilet papers it certifies to rigorous testing, and the brands that pass carry the NSF mark stating that they are safe for use with septic systems. However, there probably are many brands without the NSF mark that are also safe. In general, most toilet papers that are septic friendly will bear some sort of marking.

Do you charge for digging?
If our service tech is able to open a tank with little or no time, there is no digging charge. If there is a charge applied for digging, we will recommend you hire us to build up the tank’s access for future savings and convenience. Not all companies offer digging

Would you have a record of the last time my tank was pumped?
Absolutely. We can also tell you where it is, how it looked, which tech was there and how you paid. We might even have your dog’s name.

I know nothing about septic systems, how do you locate my septic tank?
There are several ways. From seeing common practices of installers you develop a sense of where they put tanks. We also have a “flush-able transmitter.”

How long does it take to pump out my septic tank?
If it is located and exposed, within 10 to 15 minutes, the whole process may run one hour.

What exactly does the baffle do?
The liquid in the tank settles into three distinct layers. The bottom layer is sludge, which accumulates between services. The middle level is the clearest effluent, which is directed to the drainage system. The top layer is scum, which is where the bacteria work to break down solids into sludge. The baffle prevents the scum layer from leaving the tank through the outgoing line, which is also located near the top of the tank.

How do I know if my septic system is failing?
  • Sewage odor in the house or yard
  • Standing water over the tank or leach field (ground wet or mushy)
  • Slow draining sinks and toilets
  • Gurgling sounds in the plumbing
  • Plumbing back-ups
  • Grass growing faster and greener in one particular area of the yard, especially during the extreme parts of summer or winter – excess algae or plant growth
  • Tests showing the presence of bacteria in well water
None of these warning signs can be considered a sure indication that a system has failed, but the appearance of one or more of them should prompt homeowners to have their systems inspected. Septic system failures also can occur without any of these warning signals. For this reason, a yearly inspection of your septic system is recommended and even required by some communities.

Mountain Top Septic is a family owned and operated business. We strive to provide unmatched service and reliability to our customers
If you still have questions about our services, please feel free to call Mountain Top Septic at (518) 712-5118!
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