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Gas Chamber Risks: Safeguarding Homes by Preventing Septic Tank Issues

Gas Chamber Risks: Safeguarding Homes by Preventing Septic Tank Issues

An optimally functioning septic tank should be odor-free, so a nasty smell emanating from the drain field, or near the property is a sign of a major problem. These odors often result from toxic gasses that are a by-product of various processes in the septic tank, specifically the breaking down and digestion of organic waste by anaerobic bacteria. The gasses often include carbon dioxide, methane, and hydrogen sulfide. They’re not just unpleasant, but a nuisance to those around. 


If you’re facing a similar problem with your septic system in Oak Harbor, Anacortes, Whidbey Island, and surrounding areas, continue reading as this blog post explores different ways to easily eliminate the foul smell. 


Different Septic Odors and How To Get Rid Of Them

The septic tank odors in Whidbey Island, Anacortes, Oak Harbor, and nearby areas can be detected in four primary locations:

Inside The Property

A septic odor inside your home usually indicates a plumbing problem and can pose a serious health hazard. For instance, if the trap in your basement floor drain dries out, it could lead to the septic tank gasses escaping back into the house. Similarly, a cover that isn’t sealed properly on the ejector sump pump basket in the basement can also result in septic odors in the home.


Some general remedies include,

  1. Fill the floor drain traps with water routinely. If the water levels are alright but the smell refuses to go away, you can ask a septic service in Oak Harbor, Anacortes, and surrounding areas to check your cleanout access plug to ensure it isn’t loose. A loose cleanout access plug can also allow gasses to escape into your home, so fixing it will resolve the problem.
  2. Remember that frozen pipes will soften automatically on a warm day, or you can also unfreeze the pipes by using some warm water or jetter.
  3. Ensure the cover on the ejector sump pump basket is properly sealed. If you notice any significant wear and tear, consider replacing it with a new seal.


Near the septic tank:

Some factors that contribute to septic tank odors near the tank are ineffective digestion, a septic tank that is full and due for pumping, or loose covers. Also some sulfate-reducing bacteria are also closely associated with strange septic smells as they derive their energy through the oxidation of organic compounds to hydrogen sulfide(hence their name, sulfate-reducing bacteria).


Some general remedies include,

  1. Ensure the risers and manholes are securely shielded.
  2. If your concrete lid emits odors, you can employ weather stripping to fashion a makeshift seal, effectively containing septic odors within the tank. It’s important to note that this seal should be replaced following any maintenance activities.
  3. You can also replace your old lids with newer plastic lids that have rubber seals designed to prevent the foul septic smell from escaping the tank.
  4. Schedule regular septic tank pumping in Whidbey Island, Anacortes, and surrounding areas to ensure it doesn’t overflow or get too full.


In the yard

Septic experts in Oak Harbor believe that a putrid smell in the yard usually means that your plumbing vent isn’t doing a very good job of effectively dispersing the odor. As the wind passes over the house, air currents, typically responsible for carrying these odors away from the residence, may redirect them downward into the yard. A failed septic system might also overflow, resulting in odors in the yard.


Some general remedies include,

  1. If your property is located in a deserted, forested area or a valley, extending the plumbing vent may help eliminate septic smells in the landscape.
  2. You can also consider placing carbon filters on top of the vent, which can also help absorb foul smells. Remember that these filters should be changed annually for the best results. However, make sure to use a filter that doesn’t obstruct the natural airflow.


Near the drainfield

Lastly, a strong, foul odor near the leach field indicates a failing or already failed septic tank. Septic tank failures often stem from harmful products commonly found in household items used in sinks, drains, and toilets. These substances reduce bacterial populations in the tank, causing insufficient breakdown of organic waste. Consequently, the partially broken-down waste can lead to drainfield issues and unpleasant odors.


Some general remedies include,

  1. Most expert septic contractors in Whidbey Island reveal that shock treatment usually repairs most failed drain fields. The treatment involves introducing biological additives made from enzymes and bacteria that are completely safe for the septic system.


  1. Even though the biological solution works in most cases, a mechanical solution might be required in some rare cases. For instance, if the septic tank is damaged physically, you need to hire a skilled and duly licensed contractor like Dirty Deeds Septic Services to recommend whether you need to repair or replace the septic tank.


Safety Precautions For Septic Tank Issues

You need to take two main precautions to ensure your tank remains intact.


Make sure that your septic tank in Whidbey Island and surrounding areas is properly vented. If the tank is a single compartment, ensure that there’s ample space above the baffles. If it’s a two-compartment septic tank, ensure enough ventilation between them to avoid methane buildup.


Proper inspections

When you schedule an inspection from a credible professional like Dirty Deeds Septic Service, they can easily ascertain your ventilation requirements and if your tank is safe. Qualified septic contractors in Anacortes suggest that septic tanks should be pumped and inspected every 3-5 years. 


Final Takeaway

If your septic system is not functioning properly and the foul smell is too much to take, contact our experts at Dirty Deeds Septic Services, and we’ll swiftly assess and address the issue. We greatly value our customers and want to offer you the best septic service experience possible. 


Our company offers septic tank inspection, cleaning, pumping, alarms and emergencies, and drain field repairs in Oak Harbor, Anacortes, and Whidbey Island. We’re certified, licensed, bonded, and insured.


Our team of fully trained, friendly technicians offers expert services at affordable pricing, 24-hour service, seven days a week, and emergency service to ensure your satisfaction. We do our very best to get to you as quickly as possible when that Dirty Deed needs immediate attention!


Contact us at 833-784-6592 to schedule an appointment with our team today.

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About Us

Dirty Deeds Septic provides septic pumping services to the Skagit and Island counties in Washington state. We are locally owned and operated and we are eager to help you maintain your septic system so that it continues to function properly.