Email: Jim@annruelhomeinspections.com
Copyright 2016 James MacNaughton DBA  AnnRuel Home Inspections 19 West Street Fairfield, Maine 04937 (207) 861-1227
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SEPTIC INSPECTION

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1) A search of the Town municipal records for a copy of the subsurface wastewater disposal permit (HHE-200 form), certificate of approval, etc.  A review of Town records and/or real estate disclosure statement for declaration of number of bedrooms and septic site condition, recorded use of dwelling (i.e. seasonal/year-round)

2) Internal Review/Plumbing Connections

3)Verification of laundry system hook-up to sanitary septic system ? Identification of water treatment system, etc., and disposal method for disclosure ? If pump station utilized, proper identification of separate pump electrical circuit and high water alarm

4) Locate and inspect the septic tank with observation of outlet baffle to record and report sludge/scum build-up, integrity of baffle, working liquid capacity, general integrity of tank size, type, existence or lack of risers and covers if required.

5) Field inspection and walk over/around property for observation of septic system breakout.

Classification/Conclusion (LEVEL 1, Basic Septic Inspection) The septic system inspection shall culminate in a basic written report of the conditions observed of the septic system components, and a sketch plan showing location of septic tank/cesspool found and suspected location of disposal area, if there are indications.  Ties to septic tank should be included.



The inspection is completed by an individual who has attended a voluntary certification program established by the Maine Department of Human Services in cooperation with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection. The process includes a search of property owner, municipal, and state records and a visit to the property. The inspection report may include additional information beyond the minimum requirements and is the property of the inspector and the client. Copies are not provided to the municipality or the state by the inspector.


1. Pump your septic tank every two to five years, depending how heavily the system is used. Insist that the pumper clean your septic tank through the manhole in the center of the top of your septic tank, rather than the inspection ports above the inlet and outlet baffles.


2. If you use a garbage grinder (a.k.a. "dispose-all"), pump your tank every year. Or, better yet, remove the garbage grinder and compost your kitchen scraps. Garbage grinder use leads to buildups of grease from meat scraps and bones, and insoluble vegetable solids such as cellulose.


3. Keep kitchen grease, such as bacon fat and deep fryer oil, out of your septic system. It is not broken down easily by your system, can clog your drain field, and can not be dissolved by any readily available solvent that is legal to introduce to ground water.

4. Space out laundry loads over the course of the week and wash only full loads. The average load of laundry uses 47 gallons of water. One load per day rather than 7 loads on Saturday makes a big difference to your septic system. Also, front loading washers use less water than top loading machines.


5. Install low usage water fixtures. By installing low water usage shower heads (2.5 gallons/minute), toilets (1.6 gallons), dishwashers (5.3 gallons) and washing machines (14 gallons) an average family can reduce the amount of water entering the septic system by 20,000 gallons per year! Low flow shower heads and toilets can be purchased at local lumber yards. Water saving dishwashers and washing machines can be purchased at better appliance stores.

6. Install a septic tank outlet filter in your tank. These generally sell for $100 to $200 depending upon brand and model. They catch small floating particles and lightweight solids, such as hair, before they can make it out to the disposal area and cause trouble. Some models are also designed to capture suspended grease.

7. Use liquid laundry detergent. Powered laundry detergents use clay as a "carrier." This clay can hasten the buildup of solids in the septic tank and potentially plug the disposal area.


8. Minimize the amount of household cleaners (bleach, harsh cleaners) and similar potentially toxic substances entering the septic system. Note: some substances are not allowed to be introduced into septic systems or groundwater tables. If in doubt, contact your Local Plumbing Inspector or the Division for more information.

9. Do not use disinfecting automatic toilet bowl cleaners, such as those containing bleach or acid compounds. The continuous slow release of these chemicals into the septic system kills the micro-organisms which treat your waste water.

10. You do not need to put special additives into your septic system. In fact, some can do more harm than good. Those which advertise that they will remove solids from your tank, usually do. The problem is that the solids exit the tank and end up in the disposal field. Once there, the solids seal off the disposal area, and the system malfunctions. Also, although it hurts nothing, it is not necessary to "seed" a new system with yeast, horse manure, and so forth. Normal human waste contains enough bacteria for the septic tank, and other microbes are already present in the soil and stones of the disposal area.
The Department has established minimum criteria for evaluating and reporting on existing sub-surface waste-water disposal systems. This voluntary program is being promoted as an important component of the real estate transaction process. The report criteria are not intended to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the various system components, or an analysis of site characteristics that are best evaluated by licensed site evaluators, but will provide the following important information

LEVEL 1
Average Septic Tank  Inspection
Plan, Permit Review

WHAT IS A SYSTEM INSPECTION According to the State of Maine

Ten Tips for Maintaining Your Septic System



LEVEL 2
Comprehensive Inspection 
The above Level 1 plus running a Septic camera to the leach field and checking house septic plumbing
THIS INCLUDES A SEPTIC CERTIFICATE


THE AVERAGE LIFE OF A SEPTIC SYSTEM IS 25 YEARS