The Joys of Septic Tanks

When we first moved in over two decades ago, we could not locate the septic tank, a hunt through a jungle of brambles in search of sleeping beauty eventually found a stinking bog where foul waste from the ablutions of two old ladies had for the previous 10 years bubbled up. Various rapidly dug chanels and holes drained off the evil smelling lake. What remained was a 10′ long, 4′ wide unknowably deep topless double chamber brick built weeping wall septic tank, and you could walk across it, the fill was solid.No way to get in a machine, and in any event, I didn’t want to damage the existing structure if it could possibly restore to use…it had taken two mortgages to buy the place, a new septic tank was simply unaffordable. Nothing for it, shovels and buckets. The two chamber tank was actually 8′ deep and our garden has been blooming ever since. We cast a conrete lid with two gas tight manhole cover and run a bit of overflow pipe to the boundary wall as a gas vent. Put the greenhouse on top, underfloor heating

So when a builder friend suggested our septic tank looked like it needed emptying we anxiously sought out quotes. It proved a challenge to find someone with a truck small enough to get to us. Seven and a half ton I know can get down the hill and through the deep lanes to our driveway, but all the disposal companies have nine ton trucks. Our neighbours found a company with a small truck but they charged extra! Anyway, this morning we get a phone call from guy in Coads Green who has a 9 ton short wheelbase truck with waste tank. We suggested he park up at top of hill and call us so we could walk the lane with him to make sure he could get to us. The wally pushed on and got stuck. Took 2 hours of shunting back and forwards to reverse 100 metres. Oh well, the septic tank is not overflowing and as a weeping wall type it drains away, so leave well alone. 30.03.09

Update 27.07.11 Septic tank still fine, no excess liquor, no smells, leave well alone.

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