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My Toilet and Drains are Gurgling — Is it a Septic Problem?

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Are gurgling toilets and drains a sign of a septic problem?

Gurgling toilets or drains can indicate a problem with a home’s plumbing or septic system — but it can be difficult to determine what the problem is and who to call for help. Generally plumbers can inspect plumbing and and the sewer lines to the septic tank, but they can’t often inspect inside the tank or drainfield. Fortunately there are a couple things you can check to give you an idea of whether you need to call a plumber or a septic specialist.

Checking your septic system

If you find yourself in a situation where either a toilet or a drain is gurgling and suspect it may be your septic system, take these initial steps for troubleshooting:

  1. Look at the ground where the septic tank and drainfield is located. The septic system should not be creating surface water or soggy grass; if there is water surfacing from the ground or if the grass is soggy, it is possible there may be a problem with the septic system. Try rule out any other sources of water (such as irrigation, rain, air conditioning condensation lines, etc.) from the home before calling a septic company.
  2. Locate and inspect your cleanout (often installed between the house and the septic tank). There should not be standing water in the cleanout. If there is standing water in the cleanout, call a reputable septic company to discuss the issue in further detail.

If there are not any indications of water surfacing on the ground and there is not water standing in any cleanouts, it is usually a problem with the house plumbing. Call a plumbing company to locate the problem.

We are septic system experts

If there is standing water over your system or in your system’s cleanout, the problem is likely with your septic system. Van Delden Wastewater Systems has been installing and maintaining septic systems since 1937, so there’s not much we haven’t seen.

If you’re having septic system problems, give us a call at 210.698.2000 (San Antonio) or 830.249.4000 (Boerne), or contact us online.

[Image: Andrew Beebe]


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