commercial septic system

Tips for Commercial Septic System Property Owners

commercial septic systemMost of the customer care information that you will find online with regard to septic systems is geared toward residential consumers.

Commercial septic system users have a completely unique set of guidelines, care tips and maintenance schedules that they need to adhere to in order to keep their systems in healthy running order. There are many commercial businesses that use septic systems including restaurants, schools, hospitals, beauty shops and laundry facilities.

This article will focus on the care and maintenance of septic systems for commercial business owners.

Wastewater and Water Usage

One of the biggest concerns for both residential and commercial clients is water usage and the amount of wastewater it adds to the system. Commercial systems that discharge less than 10,000 gallons of sanitary wastewater each day fall under the Massachusetts Title 5 regulation and all of the associated requirements. This includes Title 5 Inspections and rules regarding cleaning, usage and pumping, as well as repairs or upgrades of failed systems.

However, commercial systems that discharge industrial wastewater or anything other than sanitary wastewater must first store the non-sanitary wastewater in an industrial wastewater holding tank. These businesses must apply for a permit to use the industrial wastewater holding tank. Any sanitary wastewater from these same commercial businesses can continue to be discharged into an on-site system. The point is just to separate the non-sanitary wastewater from the on-site system for proper processing.  This system is most common with hair salons.

Industry-Specific Issues

Certain types of commercial businesses must address specific issues that are related to their unique industry. For example, according to Massachusetts State Law, printers, photo processors and dry cleaners must be certified under the Environmental Results Program (ERP), which is a program for streamlined permitting and compliance, due to the types of chemicals and industrial waste produced by their facilities. Other types of businesses will have other types of requirements under the law.

Beauty Shops

Under Massachusetts law, these facilities are able to utilize a septic system for toilet waste and regular shampoo water as long as they are using less than the 10,000 gallons per day limit. Wastewater that comes from chemical treatments, such as hair color, perms, straighteners, etc., must be store in an industrial wastewater holding tank with a permit from MassDEP. To faciliate this, beauty shop owners can choose to direct all sinks to the holding tank or use a special sink that has been separately plumbed for use with chemical treatments to ensure that the wastewater goes to the holding tank.

Hospitals

As long as it remains under the 10,000 gallon per day threshold, hospitals can send all sanitary wastewater from sinks, showers, toilets and laundry to a septic system. In most cases, however, hospitals will use much more than 10,000 gallons per day. Lab waste is considered to be industrial wastewater and must be stored in a MassDEP permitted holding tank.

Laundry Facilities

Again, as long as sink and toilet waste are sanitary and under the 10,000 gallons per day maximum, this type of business can send their wastewater to an on-site septic system. However, any wastewater from the laundry itself must be stored in a permitted MassDEP industrial wastewater holding tank. Businesses that offer both laundry and drycleaning services must fall under the regulation of a Dry Cleaner and are required to be certified under the ERP.

Office Buildings

As long as no chemicals or otherwise considered industrial wastewater is being produced, most office buildings are eligible to use an on-site septic system for sanitary wastewater that results from toilet waste, sinks and showers as long as it is under the 10,000 gallons per day limit. In this case, no other permitting or certification would be required.

Restaurants

Sanitary wastewater under 10,000 gallons per day can be discharged into a septic system if it comes from sink or toilet waste. Due to the food preparation and cooking that goes on in this type of business, all restaurants are required by Massachusetts State Law to install grease traps that can handle the wastewater that comes from the food preparation stations in the kitchen. All restaurant grease traps should be inspected on a monthly basis and must be cleaned once the grease level hits 25% of capacity or every three months.

Grocery Stores

As long as they use less than 10,000 gallons of water per day, grocery stores can discharge the wastewater from sinks and toilets to a septic system. Food preparation areas must have grease traps installed and, as with restaurants, should be inspected monthly and cleaned every three months or when the grease level reaches 25% of capacity.

Call a Professional Service

If you run a commercial business in the State of Massachusetts, you should contact a professional septic system service to ensure that you are working within the parameters of local law. All-Clear Septic & Wastewater has over 15 years of experience servicing, inspecting, repairing and cleaning septic systems for commercial and residential customers all over Southeastern Massachusetts. Call us today at 877-378-4279 for a professional consultation and evaluation of your septic system and help you stay on top of it all with our Preventative Maintenance Program or visit www.septicpreservation.com

components of a septic system

Four Components of a Septic System

 septic systemIn order to properly care for and maintain your residential septic system, it is in your best interest to take a little time to learn about the four primary components of your septic system. The reason why this is so important is that there are things you can do with regard to each of these components to keep your residential septic system running free of problems.

Other common names for a residential septic system include:

  • individual sewage disposal system
  • on-site system
  • on-lot system
  • on-site sewage disposal system
  • on-site wastewater treatment system
  • leach field
  • soil absorption system (SAS)

Regardless of what you call it, the four primary components of a septic system are the septic tanks, the drainfield, the soil and a pipe that takes wastewater away from the home and  into the system.  Consider signing up for an annual preventative maintenance program with your septic system company for worry free services that will help you keep your system running in tip top shape.

Component #1 – The Septic Tank
The tank for your septic system in New Bedford  is a watertight container that is made out of either concrete, polyethylene or fiberglass and is buried underground. The primary function of the septic tank is to hold onto the wastewater from your home for a period of time until the solid waste settles out to form a sludge-like substance, with any grease or oils floating to the top as scum.

The sludge and scum are prevented from leaving the tank and entering the drainfield or leachfield area by the design of the septic tank. Compartments and a special T-shape outlet in the tank are used for this purpose. In addition, screens are also recommended for use as a means of reducing the amount of solids getting to the drainfield.

Some newer septic tanks are built with risers that have lids at the surface of the ground. This new design method allows your septic tank to be easily located and inspected by your septic system maintenance company. It also allows for easy pumping of the tank when necessary.

To prevent sludge and scum from building up inside your septic tank, you should have your system pumped every one, three or five years depending on use or as-needed. Speak with your septic system maintenance service provider and inspector to find out how effectively and efficiently your residential system is working. This will help prevent problems or failures from happening and will keep your system running properly.

Component #2 – The Drainfield
After the wastewater leaves the septic tank, it discharges into the drainfield.  Once  it  arrives in the drainfield which is also known as the leachfield,  it is treated further by aerobic bacteria in the soil.

If the drainfield of your New Bedford  septic system has become overloaded with too much liquid, it can flood and cause sewage to flow up to the surface. This can also result in backups throughout your home in sinks, toilets and other plumbing fixtures. Once this happens, all treatment of wastewater ceases until the system can be serviced or repaired.

Many states require homeowners to create a reserve drainfield on their property that will be suitable to create a new drainfield if the one they are currently using fails.  The best way to take care of your drainfield is to make sure that all the components of a septic system are in proper working order and are properly maintained. Once again, an annually preventative maintenance program is recommended to prevent failure and costly repairs.

Component #3 -The Pipe
A pipe is the third component in your residential septic system. The pipe is the go-between from your septic tank to your drainfield. This pipe must also be inspected and checked on a regular basis to make sure it is in proper working order and does not have any cracks or clogs. Ask your septic system maintenance provider about proper maintenance for your entire septic system and all of its unique components.

Component #4 -The Soil
Believe it or not, the soil that is in your drainfield is an essential component of your  septic system. Once the wastewater moves from the septic tank into the drainfield, it percolates into the soil. This is a natural method used for many years as a means of removing harmful bacteria, viruses and other pathogens.

Because it is so important to the effectiveness of your septic system, the type of soil used needs to be suitable for the job it needs to do in the drainfield. This should have been addressed when your septic system was designed, built and installed, however its a good idea to ask your maintenance service inspector to take a look at the soil in your drainfield to ensure that it is suitable for the job.

A Word About Alternative Systems

If you live in an area where the soil is not suitable for a traditional septic system, like Lakeville, Cape Cod, or Marshfield,  you might need to look into getting an alternative system installed. An alternative system is also used in areas where there are too many traditional residential septic systems in use or if the system has been placed too close to surface water or groundwater.

Know Your System
In addition to knowing the four primary components of your septic system,  it is important to know the location of your system on your property. You should have an “as-built” drawing for your home that accurately defines the property line, any buildings on your property and your septic tank, drainfield and reserve drainfield, if available.

If you do not have an “as-built” drawing for your home, you can get a copy from your local Board of Health.  You will need this drawing in the event of a formal inspection, particularly if you plan on selling your home, but it is good to have on-hand anyway in the event of an emergency. You should be able to see lids and/or manhole covers for your septic system on the drawing for quick and safe access.

Tanks that are older can be difficult to locate on a property, even for seasoned septic system professionals. This is because there are usually no visible parts, unlike modern systems. If your tank doesn’t have risers, your inspector or maintenance serviceman can help you locate your septic tank underground.

Call Septic Preservation Services at 877-378-4279  for a septic maintenance program and to answer any of your septic questions or visit www.septicpreservation.com

landscaping

Landscaping Your Drainfield

landscapingMost property owners that have a septic system understand the three hard and fast rules associated with taking care of a drainfield: don’t plant anything over it, don’t build anything over it and don’t park anything over it.

Beyond knowing what NOT to do, there isn’t a lot of information available on what you SHOULD do with it. This article will focus on how to properly landscape your drainfield while protecting it and keeping it healthy at the same time.

Planting 101

You will hear that you should never add any landscaping to your drainfield other than grass. It’s a good rule of thumb and a great way to prevent property owners from going too far and damaging their system, but the truth is: there are other options besides grass.

Grass is typically recommended and the best choice for a couple of reasons:

  • no tilling required – just light raking, which should affect the drainfield
  • most varieties of grass don’t need a lot of water, which protects the drainfield from excess water
  • grass doesn’t require a lot of topsoil, which can affect the flow of air and water within the drainfield
  • grass doesn’t have deep roots, protecting the pipes in the drainfield from root wrap and damage

However, there are other plants that have similar needs and attributes, making them a viable choice for planting in your drainfield area as long as there is still access to monitoring points or clean-outs. There are lots of plants that don’t have deep roots and won’t need a lot of topsoil. You can even find plants that don’t need to be watered, that will grow just find in your area without hosing or sprinkling to provide extra water. There are plenty of plants that don’t need to have the ground tilled under before planting into the ground.

Types of Plants to Consider

If your drainfield gets no sun throughout the day, you need to look for plants or seeds that are labeled as “no sun” or “deep shade” on the package. Ask the salesperson at your garden center to direct you to groundcover that doesn’t have a large root system. Plants or seeds that are labeled as partial shade require approximately 4 hours of sun each day, either in the morning or in the afternoon. Groundcover or short plants with small root systems will fit this bill. Again, your garden center salesperson can help you find native plants that will work best in this type of area.

Plants or seeds that are labeled as “full sun” or “all day sun” need a minimum of 8 hours of sun each day. Ornamental grasses and wildflowers work very well in this type of environment. Most drainfields are established in the middle of a yard without any trees or bushes within a 30 foot radius, which means that full sun will likely be what you are looking for in landscaping.

Regardless of where you live, the type of plants that you should consider planting in your drainfield consist of a mixture of native species. Mixing together annual wildflowers, perennial groundcover that features small root systems and a mixture of native grasses that won’t require a lot of water and care will be your best choice. To get started, you should begin with a perennial grass that will establish quickly in the warmer months, which will give you instant cover to prevent erosion. This will also give you a natural defense against native invasive plants (aka weeds) for anything else you decide to plant next.

Wildflower Growing Tips

  • choose seed that is dated for the current year – don’t use old seed
  • choose a mix that is well-suited for our region – stores sometimes carry varieties that aren’t appropriate for Southeastern Massachusetts
  • select your seeds based upon the amount of sun the area will receive
  • pick native seed mixes for best results
  • watch out for weeds in your wildflower mix – look for mixes that are labeled as “no noxious weeds” or “no detectable weeds” to be sure
  • if you already have grass in your drainfield, remove 6×6 inch squares of grass in small area and sow your wildflower seeds there during germination for faster growth
  • sow seeds in late fall for Spring growth or May for late-summer season blooms

Before you begin any landscaping project in your drainfield, check with your trusted septic service technician at All-Clear Septic & Wastewater.  Grass is still the best option to use.  If you have any questions or are unsure about what to plant in this area to protect your drainfield from excess water and erosion, just ask. Check into our Preventative Maintenance Program for even more protection for your septic system year-round. Call All-Clear at 508-763-4431 for inspections, service, repairs and advice for customers throughout  Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Visit www.allclearseptic.com for more information.

education

Identifying and Dealing with Septic Issues in Rhode Island

Rhode IslandMost people don’t realize that they have septic tank system problems until it is literally staring them in the face. One of the reasons why people have septic problems in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and everywhere else in the New England area is that it is easy to forget about the septic system until its too late. It is easy to see why not taking proper care of a septic system, getting it checked or inspected regularly and having it cleaned or pumped when necessary, is the most common cause of septic tank system problems.

Normal Household Use
What is normal? Today’s septic systems are designed to be able to handle the wastewater and waste based on the number of bedrooms in the home, plus one. The “plus one” in this case is to accommodate two adults in the master bedroom. If you live in a four bedroom home, for example, your septic system should be able to handle use by five people.

However, if you live in a three bedroom home, but have six adults taking showers, using the bathroom, doing laundry and using dishes, you just might be overloading your septic system. The best way to determine what “normal” household use should be for your particular septic system is to contact a Rhode Island or Massachusetts septic service company for a complete assessment.

Not only will a professional assessment help to determine whether or not your septic system is adequate for the number of people in your home, but it will also determine the age of the equipment, whether it is working efficiently and if anything needs to be repaired or replaced. Contact All-Clear Septic & Wastewater for information about having an assessment performed to determine and prevent septic tank system problems.

How to Care for a Septic System
Everything that goes down one of the drains in your home, ends up inside your septic system. This includes toilets, but also sinks, showers, washing machines and garbage disposals too. Little things can really add up and wreck havoc, causing a multitude of septic tank system problems.

Knowing what can and cannot be flushed down the toilet is a great place to start. If you have young children in your home, it pays to start teaching them at a young age that toilets and drains are not okay for disposing of garbage and other potentially damaging items. As you children grow older, reminding them not to flush feminine hygiene products or use harsh chemicals that could end up in the drain, will be part of learning how to care for a septic system.

Speak with your Rhode Island or Massachusetts septic service company for more information on responsible septic system ownership and for more tips on how to care for a septic system. Even if you have had a septic system your whole life, there are always new tips and ideas to help you reduce the number of back-ups, repairs and other problems required throughout the life of your septic system.

Regular Maintenance is Required
Even if you have never had a single problem with your septic system, it is important to hire a company to do regular check-ups to determine whether or not your tank will need to be pumped or cleaned. Contact All-Clear Septic & Wastewater to find out more about their Preventative Maintenance Program, which has been designed to help stay ahead of septic problems in Rhode Island and Massachusetts before they become costly repairs.

After just a few years of use, even a brand new septic tank will end up with a build-up of scum and sludge. As this layer of solids grows within the tank, the wastewater that passes through the tank on its way to your drainfield can end up passing through too fast. It can also cause the solid to plug up your septic pipes on the way to the drainfield.

Overfilling your tank with too much wastewater is another reason for many typical septic tank system problems. Inviting guests over for the weekend or hosting a party for a couple dozen people on a Wednesday night, can cause an overfill of the tank. If your septic system is unable to handle all the excess wastewater, it will quickly fill up your drainfield and flood it with sewage. The cost to recover from such an issue can end up costing much more than a regular maintenance program would have.

Call for an Assessment Today!
If you would like a professional assessment of your septic system by a licensed, certified and experienced Rhode Island and Massachusetts septic system company, call Septic Preservation Services.   Septic Preservation Services provides a variety of valuable services to septic tank owners throughout the Southcoast area. Call 877-378-4279 or visit www.septicpreservation.com.

This blog was posted on www.allclearseptic.com on March 30, 2016.

flying goose

Septic Preservation and The Flying Goose Brew Pub and Grill

Flying Goose Brew PubTHE FLYING GOOSE BREW PUB AND GRILL, NEW LONDON, NH

 

The Flying Goose Brew Pub & Grille is a family run restaurant offering their own Handcrafted Brews on tap paired with delicious meals to satisfy every member of the family.

Current owner, Tom Mills, has owned and operated The Flying Goose since its start in 1993. In 1996, he gave what was known originally as The Four Corners Grille a unique identity by creating a micro-brewery. Mills put his heart and soul into rebuilding what is now The Flying Goose Brew Pub & Grille.

 

REDUCING THE CARBON FOOTPRINT

In 2011, they became the 1st Solar Powered Brewery in NH using a Solar Hot Water System and a breathtaking Photovoltaic Array. The carbon footprint has diminished significantly since they have added these tremendous systems.  Besides the many awards that their Brews have earned, they taste THAT much better knowing they were made using a little natural energy from the sun!

The oil burning furnace was replaced with a wood pellet furnace that provides heat for the entire building.  You might notice the large silver silo out back that holds the pellets.

 

GOING EVEN MORE GREEN

In 2014, Septic preservation services was contacted to help the Brewery with managing its wastewater. The existing onsite system was inadequate for the volume and type of wastewater being produced by the brewery. They were looking for a way to treat the wastewater in a way that continued the green philosophy the brewery had been committed to. They already had taken the steps to provide the spent grain to local farmers for feed as well as using some in-house for special treats. The yeast and other natural byproducts from brewing have been separated out and now go to other local farms to be used for soil amendments. Septic Preservation Services provided the design, installation, set-up and service of a new completely separate wastewater system for just the brewery. The system is designed to treat the wastewater organically with a special bacteria that consumes and transforms the wastewater to clean water to be dispersed back to the earth.

Visit www.allclearseptic.com  or call 508-763-4431 and see how they can help you with all your septic needs, whether New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts or Rhode Island.  We have the answers to all your septic questions.

This blog was posted on www.septicpreservation.com on March 23, 2016.

advanced wastewater solutions

Septic Preservation Services Attends GSDI Conference in NH

advanced wastewater solutionsSeptic Preservation Services attended the 29th Annual GSDI Spring Septic System  Conference and Expo  in Manchester, New Hampshire, March 14th and 15th.

Septic Preservation Services has been serving all of New England for over 25 years. Starting with Septic inspections we have continually grown to meet the needs of the wastewater industry as well as the community it serves. We currently are a leader in the wastewater sales, service and installation services. Meeting and surpassing the industry and customer needs.

Our service is customer driven and engineering minded. We service all Advanced Treatment Systems, old and new. From Over Board Discharge type systems to commercial industrial strength waste. We have certified wastewater operators on staff to meet the requirements of each state we service.

Installation. We are certified to install and maintain all product we sell and a few more we do not.

Our sales and distribution products line continues to grow by adding new innovative products such as the Fuji Clean wastewater treatment system. Fuji Clean is new to the USA but is the #1 advanced treatment system in the world with over 2 million systems installed and running. This innovative system has major advantages is size and cost over other advanced treatment systems. It also allows for a 75% reduction in drain field size in NH. Along with distribution of other wastewater products we are uniquely qualified to assist in detailed product information, service and installation.

Visit www.allclearseptic.com for all your septic system questions answered and see how we can make a difference, or call 508-763-4431.  We have the knowledge and expertise to work with you to solve any septic issues you may have.

Woodstock Inn Brewery

Septic Preservation and the Woodstock Inn Brewery in North Woodstock, NH

Woodstock Inn Brewery

The Woodstock Inn Brewery in North Woodstock, New Hampshire has had great success since its beginning in 1982 with only 4 rooms and a restaurant.  Two years after it opened, the owners reached over to Lincoln to save a bit of that town’s past, its old train station. Sawed in half and carefully, if not memorably, transported a few miles away to the Inn, that station became the Woodstock Station, allowing the expansion of the kitchen and the dining room. In the mid-nineties the owners decided to enter into the almost non existent “craft” brewing world with a small 7 barrel brewery that is still in use today for new test runs as well as specialty beers only on tap at the Inn. Fast forward to today and the Brewery has expanded to a large 30 barrel production brewery, crafting more than a dozen year-round and seasonal beers available throughout New England.

 Septic preservation was contacted because of issues with the wastewater arriving at the Woodstock wastewater treatment plant. The load and strength of the wastewater coming from the brewery has been overloading the treatment plant. This overload has caused the treatment plant to remove more solids per month than can be managed. The town has mandated that the brewery must pre-treat the outflow from the brewery and will charge the brewery thousands of dollars each month it is not in compliance. This made the incentive to treat the wastewater an easy decision as the return on investment would be relatively quick. If you are in White Mountains region, stop in the visit this beautiful historic Inn and Brewery.
Contact All Clear Septic to help you solve your wastewater problems just like the Woodstock Inn Brewery in Woodstock, NH.  They have the answers to all your questions.  Call 508-763-4431 or www.allclearseptic.com
This blog was posted on www.allclearseptic.com on March 9, 2016.
septic preservation

Septic Preservation Testimonial

septic preservation

Auto Wash, Elliot Maine

The Auto Wash in Eliot Maine has cleaned up their act. After being listed in an online New York Times article as the top water polluter in the state of Maine, the auto wash was in dire need of treatment to their wastewater.
Septic Preservation Services was able to review and analyze the multi faceted and complex issues causing pollutants to be discharged into the ground. The project was critically important due to the close proximity of sensitive wet lands. We were able to take the information gathered and design an onsite wastewater treatment system that solved the issues at hand. The issue was rather complex due to the type of waste generated by the car wash. A significant amount of the waste were solids including, dirt, salt, and road grime not terribly difficult to remove from the wastewater. The rest of the pollutants were soap, wax, oils, grease and other auto fluids. These proved to be more difficult to remove. After many tests we were able to organically treat the wastewater with a special bacteria developed with the ability to consume these organics. After treatment the auto wash is able to recycle the clean water back through the wash and reduce water consumption. This ability to recycle water has a significant impact on the environment and the amount of water discharged into it. With the Auto Wash’s close proximity to sensitive wet lands taking a green approach to the issue was crucial. The Auto wash is now one of the cleanest and greenest in the state.

Septic Preservation has the answer to all your septic problems and needs.  Call 800-378-4279 or visit www.septicpreservation.com to have all your septic questions answered.  Auto Wash in Elliott, Maine called and had all their problems solved.

This blog was posted on www.septicpreservation.com on March 2, 2016.