Let’s review what a septic tank actually is before we get into the specifics. A septic tank is an underground chamber made of concrete, fiberglass, or plastic where water waste/sewage travels for basic treatment. The septic tank’s settling and anaerobic processes reduce solids and organics, but the treatment efficiency is only at a moderate level; only water treatment facilities can provide thorough treatment of water. Septic tank systems are a type of simple onsite sewage facility for domestic use. Rural home areas/neighborhoods tend to use septic tanks most.
Now let’s get into the average lifespan of a septic tank. The lifespan of a septic system varies widely between 15 to 40 years. This is due to different factors: has the tank experienced damage from vehicle traffic, flooding by groundwater, or clogging. The type of materials that were used to build the tank also affects its durability. Steel tanks have a tendency to have shorter lifespans because they rust out before reaching 40 years of use. On the other hand, tanks made from concrete and fiberglass last longer. Proper installation and location also plays a role in the tank’s longevity. A faulty installation can cause leaking and damage to the tank within a few years or even months from installation. Furthermore, if the tank gets placed in an area with constant flooding and weak soil, the leach field may get clogged hurting the lifespan of the tank. A common mistake made by domestic users of septic tanks, is not giving the tank a maintenance check-up. A check-up every three or five years can identify and prevent minor problems from expanding. It is recommended to have communication with a tank expert, so the tank can reach 40 years and sometimes longer.