Frigid Massachusetts winter temperatures and frequent snowstorms can lead to a number of sewer line and septic system issues. Even during a normal winter, freezing always poses a threat. Identifying and correcting the following potential risks greatly minimizes the chances of frozen sewer lines and septic systems, which are much more dangerous.
Lack of snow cover
Snow keeps septic tanks and soil treatment areas insulated during the winter months, preventing frost from penetrating the deep soil layers. When you’re facing extreme cold with no snow, you may need to seek out other methods for keeping your septic tank and soil treatment areas insulated.
Compacted snow doesn’t insulate sewer lines and septic systems as effectively as uncompacted snow. It’s important for vehicles, people, and large animals (i.e. livestock) to stay off of sewer lines and septic systems, particularly in the winter. If you’re planning to install a septic tank, sewer pipe, or soil treatment space in a high traffic area, use insulated pipes.
Improper pipe drainage
Sewer pipes and pump lines that aren’t installed with the right change of elevation or pipes that sag or settle after installation can lead to pipes freezing. When there is a low spot or dip in a pipe, there is a greater risk of sewage collecting and freezing. Watch for dips in the pump lines right next to and above your septic systems so that you can keep sewage draining out of the pipes properly.
Cold air entering the system
Uncapped, open, and broken riser and inspection pipes as well as open manhole covers let cold air into a septic system, increasing the risk of freezing.
Irregular system use
When homes are occupied, sewage is entering the septic system, which helps maintain warm temperatures and avoid freezing. Leaving a home unoccupied for an extended period of time or generating a very low quantity of sewage increases the risk of freezing. Whenever possible, use your septic system frequently during the winter with ample quantities of warm water.
When you’re facing a frozen sewer line or septic system and need professional help, contact a reputable sewer cleaning service in Eastern MA to get the issue fixed as soon as possible without creating any more damage. Fixing the problem in a timely fashion also reduces the risk of recurring issues the next winter.