Septic or plumbing? Can I do it myself? Who do I call?
Below are some FAQ's that we hope can help if you are in a predicament
Our most common question!
If one of the toilets in your house is bubbling and no other toilets, no sinks, and no tubs are bubbling then this is most likely a plumbing issue.
If the issue is septic related, it will most likely affect all of the plumbing in your house (starting with the lower level if you have a two story home). Meaning that you would have issues in multiple bathrooms or multiple sinks.
No, this is not always the case.
The septic tank should remain full at all times if the system is being used. Normal water level is typically 6"-7" from the top of the tank. The water level should be just below the outlet pipe - the pipe on the backside of the tank, farthest from the house, where the water exits.
If the water level is all the way to the top of the riser, if it's overflowing or if you can't see your outlet pipe, you have a septic issue. Pumping may resolve this issue, but you may also have a stopped up filter or you may have an issue in your drainfield.
If your system has an effluent filter, start with having that cleaned (If you would like to do this yourself, see below). If the filter is clean and the water level does not go down, this means that you have an issue out past the tank, most likely in the drainfield.
An easy way to determine if your plumbing is working as designed is to check your inlet pipe. To see this pipe, pull the lid off the tank and check for the pipe that is coming from your house and entering the tank.
While you are looking at the inlet pipe, have someone inside the home flush a toilet or run some water. Now, watch the inlet pipe and see if water flows into the tank freely. If the water does not flow into the tank or if it barely trickles, your inlet pipe could be clogged.
If you suspect that grease is the issue, run hot water in your tubs and sinks to try and flush the grease out. (p.s. don't pour grease down the drain!) The grease will come out in a sleeve, you will not miss it.
If you suspect that the inlet pipe is clogged for another reason:
1) You can try to snake the line
2) You can contact us or a plumber
3) Check to see if you have cast iron pipes. If you have cast iron pipes, they could be corroded and they may need to be replaced. This would fall under a plumber's jurisdiction
Regular cleaning of your filter is essential to a healthy septic system. However, there are times when the filter will get clogged outside of your scheduled appointmens. Filters can get clogged with normal debris, hair or seeds.
If your filter is stopped up, the water level in your septic tank will be above the outlet pipe. Your effluent filter will be located on the backside of your septic tank, furthest from the house. The filter will be located in the sanitary tee approximately 7" down from the top of the tank, the filter will be submerged in effluent. To pull the filter out, you can use a hook or a wire hanger. The filter will be in the middle of the tee, you will be able to hook the filter and pull it out.
Once you have pulled the filter out, rinse it off with a garden hose to remove the debris. While the filter is pulled out, if the issue in your system is a stopped up filter, the water level will go down. When you insert the filter back in, the water level should remain below the outlet pipe.
If you clean the filter and the water level does not go down, this means that you have an issue beyond your septic tank, most likely in the drainfield. You will need to contact us at this point so that we can help.
A smell in the bathoom could be a number of things. After running water into the tank, air is pushed back up through the plumbing. Here are a few common odor sources:
1) A dry drain - This would be a drain that is not frequently used. If you have a pea trap that does not have water in it, odors can emit up through the plumbing. The remedy for this would be to run water into the pea trap.
2) A bad wax ring - If the wax ring around your toilet has started to deteriorate, this could be allowing odors to enter your bathroom. Your toilet wax ring may need to be replaced.
3) A studor vent - Your home may have a studor vent under a bathroom or kitchen sink. If a studor vent is the source of your odor, you would need to contact a plumber
Typically, when you hear water trickling or dripping in the tank - it is nothing to be concerned about. Usually, this sound is water coming into the tank from the house or water going into the pump tank from the septic tank.
If you start to have other issues, wet spots in the yard, slow draining in the house, overflow from the riser or bad odors; then we suggest giving us a call to troubleshoot the system.
McFarland Septic has been in the business for over forty years. The company began with Waylon McFarland Sr. and his son, Waylon McFarland Jr. Together, father and son began pumping systems for friends and neighbors. News of their work quickly spread throughout the town, and they soon gained the reputation that we work so hard to preserve.
Today, the company is run by Waylon McFarland Jr. and his wife, Sonya McFarland. Husband and wife duo worked together to build on what began back in the 80's. They dedicated themselves to nuturing and growing the company. Waylon Jr. built a reputation that preceeds him throughout the state. His legacy is what we were founded on, it's what we pride ourselves in, and it's what we will continue to strive for in the years to come.
We are one of the few companies certified to install any system permitted by the state of North Carolina.
We install Conventional systems, Pump-conventional systems, Gravity systems, Advantex systems, Spray systems, Drip-irrigation systems, EZ treat systems and more!
We are happy to serve in a number of surrounding counties; we do residential and commercial work, installation, pumping, repairs, home-sale inspections, well inspections and more. We are a certified installer with a grade IV license and a sub-surface operator license. Our mission is to provide our customers with services and products that are second to none.
Quality work is what we pride ourselves in! It's what we were built on, and what we continue to do today. We aim to provide you with service that is number one. We specialize in customer service and strive to be the best in everything we do. When you think McFarland's, think quality!
Our service areas include:
Hillsborough - Durham - Chapel Hill - Pittsboro - Apex
Mebane - Efland - Graham - Burlington - Rougemont Timberlake - Cedar Grove - Raleigh