Cities in the U.S. usually provide public wastewater treatment plants where household wastewater and water runoff are collected through sewers and treated. However, here in the Eldorado area, our homes and businesses rely on private septic systems. EAWSD has no responsibility for home septic systems; yet proper maintenance of your septic system can help protect the groundwater aquifers from which we obtain our public drinking water supply.
As a homeowner, you are responsible for maintaining your septic system. Proper operation and maintenance can do much to prolong the life of your system. This can save you money by avoiding expensive repair or replacement, it can protect your property value, and it is important for the health of you, your community, and the environment.
Septic systems can provide long-term, effective treatment of household wastewater if properly designed, constructed, and maintained. Things to keep in mind:
Inspect your system (every 1 to 3 years) and pump your tank as necessary.
Use water efficiently. Don’t dispose of household hazardous wastes in sinks and toilets. Use garbage disposals sparingly.
Protect the area over, and near, your septic system. Roots from nearby trees or shrubs might clog and damage the drain field. Don’t drive or park vehicles on any part of your septic system. Doing so can compact the soil in your drain field or damage pipes, tank, or other septic system components.
The US Environmental Protection Agency provides valuable information on how septic tanks function, what is involved in their care and maintenance, and what effect they may have on your home and the environment. Check out EPA.gov/septic.