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Maintain Your Septic System

Care for Your Infrastructure

Equally important to what you put into your septic system is how you protect the land over and around it. The overall function of the system is reliant on each individual element of the system being in good order. In many cases the effluent disposal area can cover over 100m2, representing a sizeable area in close proximity to the home which has to be kept in accordance with the original wastewater permit conditions.

Read on to find out more or have a look at Factsheet Four: Maintaining Septic Infrastructure.

Structures around your System

A common issue, particular on small house blocks, is accidentally paving, concreting, decking or even building extensions or sheds on top of the septic infrastructure. If the construction activity doesn’t damage the infrastructure directly it eventually leads to issues related to:

  • Inability of plumbers and pump out agents to access the system
  • Failure of effluent disposal field due to lack of plants to support removal of water from the system.

Livestock and Vehicles

Grazing and parking vehicles over the top of your septic should be avoided as it can:

  • Compact the ground in your effluent disposal field, affecting the drainage of treated effluent into the surrounding soil
  • Directly damage the septic tank or other aspects of the system.

Water Accumulation

Effluent disposal areas function best when they are well drained, to assist with this:

  • Avoid allowing storm water to drain to the same area
  • Consider installing drains or other modifications uphill from the system to divert water runoff.

Plants and Your Septic System

It's important to ensure that plants and trees growing near your spetic infrastructure do not:

  • Have roots that invasively seek water or disrupt structures
  • Create shade that affects evaporation, particularly during winter

Speak to your local nursery for advice on plants that might be suitable for your area.