Any of you folks have any experience with the Rid-X product I think it's
called, or any other septic tank treatments, as to prolong the time
required between pump-outs ?
Stuff work, or... ?
Any thoughts would be most appreciated.
Never used it. Hear it is a waste of money. Normal bacteria in human
waste will do the job. Don't put anything in the septic that you can
throw in the trash and that includes things like cooking fats. That
will prolong times before clean outs needed.
There are a lot of factors involved in this equation. Far too many to
provide a yes/no answer.
Assuming your system was properly designed in the first place, the load
rating has not been exceeded by more people/fixtures using it than it
was designed for, it has not been neglected in the past, allowing solids
to migrate to the field and plug things up, assuming that tree roots,
etc. have not damaged the field, maybe...
While this is anecdotal, it may be of help. We have a septic system on
our property. It was installed 38 years ago. It is NOT a mound system,
but as close to one as you can get since due to a 100 year flood and the
local water table when the testing was done, we were only allowed to
"shave" 3" of topsoil from the grade to lay the bed. The only "over
design" factor I added to the engineer's plans was I increased the tank
capacity to 1500 gal from the specified 1000 gal.
Over the years our family size has maxed at 4 persons. Typical usage:
dishwasher, washing machine, baths, at least one long shower daily for
the lord of the manor (me!). No garbage disposal used.
In 38 years, we have had the tank pumped 3 or 4 times (and we're
probably about due again - thanks for the reminder).
When we have the pumper come in and they find it's been 6 or 9 or 10
years since the last pumping, they tell us "oh, you should not have
waited so long. Never let it go more than a couple, four years. Never!"
Then they "stick" it and find that after all that time, there's only 8"
- 12" inches of solids accumulated in the bottom of the tank. It's the
solids migrating to the field that causes the failure. Pure and simple.
The only thing that we add (my wife actually) to the "mix" other than
solid body waste and gray water from the home plumbing is an occasional
package of yeast and, usually, that's expired yeast left over from my
wife's baking. Might be a packet or so every six months.
I'm thinking that the last time we had it pumped MIGHT have been when we
had the distribution box replaced as the concrete had disintegrated.
Septic guy said he could see no sign of solids into the field and
everything looked "great."
The extra capacity in the tank is not, IMO, a true factor here. It's
50% bigger than needed and the depth would remain constant so I'm
thinking that in the 1000 gal tank, that 8" to 12" of solids should
convert to 12" to 18" in a "properly" sized tank. Even at 24" of
solids, it wouldn't come close to the baffles allowing the solids to
migrate to the field.
Had a friend who was a registered sanitarian and after leaving the
county health department where he inspected these systems, particularly
those in failure mode, went into business for himself. He had some sort
of compound that he would add in buckets and then temporarily overload
the system by filling the system with water that would be kept running
to force the compound into the field. Knowing John, it was probably
cheating somehow but it worked. He could raise septic systems from the
dead, saving owners a great amount of money. EPA would probably have a
cow but... Alas, John passed away and I'll be damned if I can recall
what the compound was. Fortunately, with my system I doubt I'll ever
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