Why Does My Septic System Keep Filling Up

Why Does My Septic System Keep Filling Up?

It’s no secret a septic tank is designed to be filled up with wastewater. So much, in fact, that the average household septic tank can be emptied every 3 to 5 years. But if your tank is filling up unusually quick, you might find yourself draining your tank every few months.

Sound familiar? Don’t ignore it! Consider these reasons why your septic system keeps filling up. The sooner you determine the cause, the sooner you can prevent bigger issues in the future.


If your tank is constantly overflowing or filling up, it might be a sign that your tank is too small for your family.

Typically, it’s assumed that there are two people living in each bedroom. It’s also assumed that every individual uses at least 60 to 70 gallons of water per day. As a result, the exact size of

your septic tank coincides with the size of your home.

But if your family is too big for your home, your tank will receive more water than it should. Consider the size of your septic tank and make sure it’s the correct capacity for your family.


An overwhelmed tank isn’t limited to incorrect capacity. Even if your tank is the right size, it can still be overloaded.

In this case, it depends on your family’s water usage habits. Some activities, like doing laundry and taking baths, already use a lot of water. If these tasks are repeated within a few hours, the wastewater flowing into your tank may be too much for it to handle.  


Another possible cause is harsh chemicals. If toxic products are sent down the drain, your tank may fill up unusually fast.

These chemicals are not safe for the bacteria in your septic system. The bacteria, which are essential for a healthy system, are in charge of “digesting” solid waste. Without enough bacteria, the waste will accumulate and cause blockages.

Consequently, there will be less space for water, and your tank will quickly fill up.

To treat your tank well, avoid pouring the following chemicals into your system:

  • paint thinners
  • paint
  • motor oil
  • solvents
  • gasoline


You might be surprised to learn that leaks can make your tank fill up abnormally fast.

A septic tank leak, for example, doesn’t just let water sneak out. It can also let water sneak in, which increases how much liquid flows into your tank. This can even allow materials like dirt and mud to end up in your tank, too.

Overflow can also be caused by leaks in plumbing fixtures, like toilets or faucets. If a plumbing fixture is leaking, you’ll have a continuous flow of water entering your septic system.


A stubborn tank that keeps filling up may signal a problem with your drainfield.

When wastewater leaves the tank, it ends up in the drainfield. Here, bacteria cleanse the liquid waste by breaking down organic impurities. This purified water is then absorbed into the

surrounding soil.

But if your drainfield is clogged or failing, it won’t be able to properly drain wastewater. The liquid waste will have nowhere to go! In turn, the water will back up into the tank, causing it to quickly fill up.

Other signs of a drainfield issue include gurgling pipes, slow drains, sewage odors, and soggy spots around the yard. If you suspect your drainfield is failing, call a septic provider like Paradise Valley Septic.


From summer thunderstorms to April showers, rainy weather can cause septic problems due to excess water. For instance, if gutter runoff combines with your wastewater, your septic tank will fill up faster. This can seriously overwhelm your system, so it’s important to know where water flows during rainy weather.

Rain can also make it difficult for your drainfield to do its job. If excess water accumulates in the area, the purified wastewater will become stuck and eventually back up.

While you can’t change the weather, you can control your water usage when it’s raining. For example, limiting long showers and laundry during rainy weather can reduce overflow into your tank.


There are many possible reasons why your septic system keeps filling up. But if you want to get to the root of the problem, contact the experts at Paradise Valley Septic. We can examine your tank and make things right, whether it calls for a septic tank pumping or septic repair.

We can also recommend a regular maintenance schedule for your tank, household size, and usage. This way, you can minimize the risk of future septic system problems.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment.


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