Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Septic Services in Calgary

Q: How often should I have my tank serviced?

A: The timing of your septic tank service depends on many factors, including how many people live in the house, but as a rule, your septic tank should be serviced every 2 years if fewer than 4 people reside there permanently, or annually if 4 or more people are in the house. Many people make it part of their “spring cleaning” ritual or their winter preparations.


Q: Why do I need to service my tank?

A: Regular servicing of your septic tank helps to prevent solids from entering and ultimately building up in your septic field. This buildup can lead to septic field failure. Regular servicing of your tank also helps ensure nasty surprises are prevented.


Q: I have a sewer backup in my basement. Send out your vacuum truck!

A: A full septic tank is not the only possible cause of a sewer backup. A blocked or frozen line from your house can also cause a backup. It is best to check that your tank is actually full before calling for service.


Q: How do I know if my tank is full?

A: Most tanks are a simple 2-compartment tank with 1 lid or access point. When you open the lid you should be able to clearly see a divider or baffle wall separating the 2 compartments. The side closest to your house is your “solid side”, and the other is your “liquid side”. In normal operations the liquid side will be lower than the solid side, and the solid side will be near the top of the divider (baffle wall). If you cannot see the divider, or if both sides are near the top, your tank may be full and/or you may have pump or field issues. Contact us for assistance.


Q: It’s snowing outside; can you still service my tank?

A: We work 12 months a year. Snow, ice, rain, wind are not problems. What can provide obstacles are temperatures below -20, as well as deep snow on unplowed driveways, or very soft ground, as our trucks are large and heavy. Otherwise, we can provide service in almost any conditions.


Q: How close to my tank does your truck need to be?

A: All of our trucks carry a minimum of 100’ of hose. If your tank is further away than this, please let us know prior to date of service so we can bring extra hose.


Q: I have a bad smell coming from a drain. Is there a problem with my septic tank?

A: The most common cause of bad smells coming from drains is lack of use. Most drains are set up with a “p-trap” which is designed to hold water and thus prevent smells from your sewer pipe from coming back into your home. Sometimes, in guest bathrooms or other seldom used areas, the water in these traps evaporates and the odours from your sewer pipe are free to come into the room. The simple fix is to run some water down the drain and fill this “p-trap”.


Do you have a question that is not addressed here? Give us a call to learn more or to schedule a service appointment.

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