Your Reliable Source

Print
Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

A blog by your local public health experts

 

We invite your comments but will delete those with profanity, personal attacks, derogatory statements, ads or promotional material. Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department does not provide personal medical advice; please contact your health care provider. 

When Your Septic System Bites the Dust

Environmental Health Supervisor Randall Olsen
by Randall Olsen04/06/2018 12:58 p.m.
Updated: 04/09/2018

Three weeks ago, Gary Porter encouraged you to Show Your Septic Systems Some Love This Spring. Last week, I shared some simple steps homeowners can take to solve or prevent sewage backups or fix minor problems. This week, we will look at what to do if the fix is not so simple.

This is the time of year when you will spend more time outdoors. A failing septic system is not exactly the setting you want for your backyard family BBQ. Not only is it a nuisance, but sewage can spread disease.

As a homeowner you know you always have repairs and upgrades on your to-do list. Just like you won’t drive the same vehicle your entire life, you can’t assume your septic system will last forever. With routine maintenance your system may last 30 years. But even with proper maintenance, you will probably need to replace it at some point.  

From failing to smooth sailing: Help for homeowners

If you have to repair, replace or upgrade your septic system, we can help you save money. We can point you to several affordable resources and loan programs to help ease the cost. These are available through various Pierce County departments, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Craft3—Clean Water Regional Loan Program.

Craft3 is a nonprofit loan fund that helps reduce financial barriers for families and small businesses. Their Clean Water Loans help homeowners repair or replace failing septic systems. Loans can cover all upfront and construction costs, including septic system design, permits, installation and maintenance. The loan program is a fit for a wide range of properties, incomes and credit backgrounds. Low income applicants may even qualify for deferred payments. Since 2014, more than 100 Pierce County homeowners have taken advantage of Clean Water Loans to replace or repair failing septic systems—a $2.2-million investment in our community. 

Clean Water Loan Program Testimonials

Andy Sharp of Gig Harbor wasn’t thrilled to find out his drainfield failed and he needed a new tank that would cost about $15,000. But with the help of the Clean Water Loan Program, he was able to get a low interest loan. Sharp said, “Craft3 was great and made it really easy for me to get a loan quickly. I now have flexible payments and am on schedule to pay off the loan.”

Check out another septic replacement success story captured by Pierce County TV.

Protect the investment you have in your home and property today. Think of maintenance for your septic system the same way you think of maintenance for your car. If you keep your car in good working order, you minimize the risk of a break down.  If you do the same for your septic system, you minimize the risk of system failure, a mess from sewage back-ups, and costly repairs.  Show your septic system some love to keep it in good working order. Learn more about operation and maintenance for your septic system.

In our next post, we will look at what happens when people neglect their septic systems – and don’t take advantage of opportunities to fix them.

  1. Updated: 04/09/2018
Environmental Health Supervisor Randall Olsen

by Randall Olsen

Randall works to keep our environment free from pollution and contamination.

Free viewers are required for some of the attached documents.
They can be downloaded by clicking on the icons below.

Acrobat Reader Flash Player Windows Media Player Microsoft Silverlight Word Viewer Excel Viewer PowerPoint Viewer