About 25 percent of the American population relied on the use of septic tanks and cesspools to dispose of their waste, so you aren't alone when it comes to living outside of your county's sewer grid. If you've decided to have a septic tank installed for your newly built home, there are a few important considerations you should make to ensure that the decision is right for your household. Here's what should be thought out:

How Big of a Tank Do You Need?

The size your septic tank needs to be will depend on several factors, including the size of your household and how much water will be utilized on a daily basis. It's important to know how big of a tank you'll need to effectively service your household so you can determine whether the size of your yard can accommodate it. There is also the leach field to think about, as one will need to be created to hold liquid that is expressed from the septic tank.

A leach field is made up of a series of trenches that are designed to hold and filter contaminants within the water that drains into it from the septic tank. This helps keep the tank, underground soil and water, and your yard from becoming contaminated with wastewater – it's an essential part of the overall septic system, so there needs to be room for it in your yard. An experienced septic contractor can inspect your yard and help you determine whether or not there is enough space to install all aspects of a new septic system.

How Does the Permit Process Work?

Most counties throughout the United States requires permits to build a septic system, so it's important to consult with your county's building department to find out what you need to do to make sure your septic system is legal upon installation. In addition to any paperwork that needs to be filled out, inquire about:

  • If any inspections need to be done by the county before, during, and after installation, and if so, how many.
  • Costs for permit applications and licensing of your new system upon installation.
  • Timelines for permit and building approvals.

Once you've gathered this information, you should be able to determine whether installing a septic system is within your budget and can be legally completed within your preferred time frame.

What About Maintenance?

Maintenance should be a serious consideration when deciding whether or not to install a septic system for your new home. If you don't have the time, resources, or inclination to keep up with the maintenance requirements for your septic system, chances are that your septic system will succumb to wear and tear and you'll end up dealing with a wastewater spill or other health-hazard as time goes on. Here are some of the tasks you can expect to be responsible for as time goes on:

  • Scheduling a professional inspection once every three years.
  • Having the tank pumped every three to five years.
  • Optimize water usage efficiency year-round.

Your technician should be able to provide you with an itemized list of maintenance requirements for the specific septic systems you're considering investing in. You can use the lists to compare each option and determine which is likely to require the least maintenance overall.

Deciding whether or not to invest in a septic system over a cesspool for your new home should be easy after taking the time to make all the considerations that are outlined here. Discuss each point with a septic contractor like Southern Sanitary Systems Inc so they can provide you with expert guidance and help answer any questions that are specific to your household's needs.