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Water: Septic (Onsite / Decentralized) Systems

Why Maintain?

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Maintaining Your Septic System…

Saves You Moneyseptic_inspection
Regular maintenance fees of $250 to $300 every three to four years is a bargain compared to the cost of repairing or replacing a malfunctioning system, which can cost between $3,000 and $7,000 for a conventional system. The frequency of pumping required for your system depends on how many people live in your home and the size of the system. For more information on how septic systems can be a long-term and cost-effective solution for your wastewater management needs, download the MOU Partnership Paper: Decentralized Wastewater Treatment Can Be Cost Effective and Economical (PDF) (2 pp, 3.2MB, About PDF).
Protects Your Property Value           
An unusable septic system or one in disrepair will lower your property value, not to mention pose a potentially costly legal liability.

Keeps You and Your Neighbors Healthy 
Household wastewater is loaded with disease-causing bacteria and viruses, as well as high levels of nitrogen and phosphorus. If a septic system is well-maintained and working properly, it will remove most of these pollutants. Insufficiently treated sewage from septic systems can cause groundwater contamination, which can spread disease in humans and animals. Improperly treated sewage also poses the risk of contaminating nearby surface waters, significantly increasing the chance of swimmers contracting a variety of infectious diseases, from eye and ear infections to acute gastrointestinal illness and hepatitis. Read the MOU Partnership Paper: Decentralized Wastewater Treatment Can Protect the Environment, Public Health, and Water Quality (PDF) (2 pp, 1.9MB, About PDF) for more information.

Protects the Environment
More than four billion gallons of wastewater is dispersed below the ground’s surface every day. That’s a lot of water! Groundwater contaminated by poorly or untreated household wastewater doesn’t just pose dangers to drinking water—it poses dangers to the environment. Malfunctioning septic systems release bacteria, viruses, and chemicals toxic to local waterways. When these pollutants are released into the ground, they eventually enter streams, rivers, lakes, and more, harming local ecosystems by killing native plants, fish, and shellfish. Want to learn more about how septic systems can help support greener, more sustainable communities? Read the MOU Partnership Paper: Decentralized Wastewater Treatment Can Be Green and Sustainable (PDF) (2 pp, 2.7MB, About PDF)


Looking to Launch a Local Outreach Campaign?
  • Check out the SepticSmart Outreach Toolkit!Toolbox

    Government officials, industry professionals, environmental groups, and other local organizations can access ready-to-use educational materials, case studies, and more.

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Contact SepticSmart Staff: 
Phone: 208/378-5626

E-mail: decentralized@epa.gov

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