Septic System Maintenance

The importance of septic system maintenance

In many areas of Marion County municipal sanitary sewer systems are not yet available.  Nationwide, approximately 25 percent of the population relies on decentralized or onsite wastewater treatment systems and almost 95 percent of these systems are septic systems.  Many people moving into homes with septic systems have never experienced living without municipal sewage treatment before.  They would be well advised to educate themselves on this type of wastewater treatment, how it functions, where a septic system can be used, how to properly maintain it and what to do in case of a septic failure.

When a septic system fails, the effluent may contain a variety of disease causing microorganisms and pollutants such as nitrates, phosphates and chlorides.  These can cause serious health problems and are a real threat to water quality.  It is therefore imperative that homeowners with septics be well educated and prudent in their maintenance routines.

If you are having problems with your septic system please contact the Marion County Health Department, Septics & Wells division at 317-221-2147.

The Marion County Soil & Water Conservation District and the Marion County Health Department worked together to create a booklet to help homeowners with septic systems. This publication, “Living with a Septic System – A homeowner’s guide to basic septic system operation and maintenance”, covers all of the important issues homeowners need to know about living with a septic system in layman’s terms with the hope of providing the public with helpful advice and assisting in improving public health and protection of water quality.