How Do Water Retention Systems Work?

How Do Water Retention Systems Work?


At Paradise Valley Septic, we’re dedicated to educating homeowners about the ins and outs of residential septic systems.

After all, a working septic system is important for safely handling wastewater.

But what about stormwater? Also known as rainwater, stormwater is excess water caused by heavy rainfall. If it isn’t efficiently controlled, it can accumulate and turn into runoff.

That’s why it’s important to understand how water retention systems work. By adding one to your property, you can help prevent runoff-related issues.


Now, don’t get us wrong. We appreciate the environmental significance of rainfall. The problem, however, is when excess rainfall isn’t properly managed.

Unfortunately, this is a common issue in suburban neighborhoods. When it rains, rainwater doesn’t soak into the ground. Instead, it flows over paved surfaces like sidewalks, parking lots, and roads.

The result? A rapid accumulation of stormwater. This runoff increases the risk of several problems, including:

  • Flash flooding
  • Soil erosion
  •  Animal habitat damage
  • Pollution (stormwater can pick up pollutants from paved surfaces)

In Arizona, runoff is especially troublesome. Our soil becomes hard and dry during our long, hot summers. Come monsoon season, we’re hit with intense weather changes and irregular rainfall. 

But when the soil is so dry, it can’t properly absorb water. In turn, stormwater runs off and rapidly accumulates.


Here’s where water retention systems come in.

A water retention system is an underground structure that’s designed to manage runoff.

It all starts with drainage channels. Excess water enters these channels, which direct it into the structure. As the name suggests, the system retains (or holds) the water.

This prevents said water from accumulating and causing problems.  


The structure also has an outlet. This allows the system to slowly release water into surrounding soil. 

Consequently, the area isn’t overpowered by forceful runoff, and the soil can gradually absorb moisture.


For more than 18 years, Paradise Valley Septic has installed water retention systems in Phoenix and the surrounding areas. We’re pros when it comes to handling Arizona’s unique soil and intense weather.

Our team of expert technicians can explain how water retention systems work, address specific issues, and provide regular maintenance inspections.

To learn more, fill out our online form or call us at (480) 607-7763.  



I'm Having a Party — Do I Need to Prepare My Septic System

I’m Having a Party — Do I Need to Prepare My Septic System?



When it comes to planning a party, many homeowners focus on the “standard” list of things to do. For example… 

Did we send out the invites? Check. 

Do we have the decor? Check. 

 Is there enough food to feed a crowd — and then some? Check, check, and check.

These factors are just as important as the special occasion. However, if you want to host a truly successful celebration, there’s one thing you should never ignore: your septic system.

That’s because having a party increases your home’s water usage in a short amount of time. This can easily overload your septic system, leading to drainfield failures and smelly backups. Talk about a miserable post-party hangover!

So, let’s look at how you can prepare your septic system before a party. You’ll be glad you did.

  1. Do Laundry Early

When you’re planning a party, laundry is probably the last thing on your mind. We get it. But if you want to protect your septic system, it’s wise to finish your laundry well before the big day. It’s the best way to give your tank enough time to properly handle wastewater.


  1. Fix Leaks

Leaky fixtures can send a lot of unnecessary water down the drain. In fact, a leaking toilet can waste about 200 gallons of water each day. A leaking faucet, on the other hand, can waste at least 10 gallons every day. This equals more than 3,500 gallons of water each year.

While it’s wise to fix leaks on any old day, it’s even more crucial before a party. Leaky fixtures plus festivities spells double trouble for your system.


  1. Avoid Lawn Parking

Sometimes, preparing your septic system has nothing to do with water. You can also plan the parking situation in advance. By designating a parking area away from the drainfield, you can prevent expensive septic line damage.

When it’s time to party, direct your guests to the designated area. Make sure no one drives over the drain field, too. You can block it off with tape, rope, or stakes.

  1. Avoid Flushing Garbage

One of the best ways to avoid septic system problems is to be mindful of what goes down the drain.

Toilet paper and human waste are the only two things that should be flushed. Everything else is a no-go. This includes:

    • Feminine hygiene products
    • Napkins
    • Paper towels
    • Wipes of any kind
    • Diapers
    • Dental floss

Of course, you should avoid flushing these things even when you’re not having a party. But when you have a house full of guests, it helps to remind people of what they can’t flush by posting a list in the bathroom.

  1. Avoid Pouring FOG

If there’s one guest that shows up to every party, it’s FOG: fats, oils, and grease. It can also mess with your system if it sneaks away and slips down the drain.

Much like non-flushable items, FOG can clog up drains. They can also disturb the good bacteria in your septic tank. If this occurs, your system will ultimately fail. 

To avoid this problem, remind your kitchen helpers to toss FOG in the trash instead of the drain.

  1. Pump Your Tank

It’s no secret regular septic maintenance can make everyday life more comfortable. Yet, when it comes to special occasions, routine pumpings are even more important. This is especially true if your septic tank hasn’t been inspected or pumped within the last few years. 

And if your party is tomorrow or within a few days? Be extra diligent about the tips on this list. Remember, limiting water usage can go a long way. 


Before having a party, prepare your septic system by calling Paradise Valley Septic. Our team of professional septic technicians can take care of septic pumping, repairs, and everything in between. This way, you’ll feel good knowing that your system is ready to get in on the fun.

We offer residential septic services in Phoenix Valley and the surrounding areas. To schedule an appointment, contact us at 480-531-1725.

Rain And Your Septic System

Rain and Your Septic System: Everything You Need to Know


Now that it’s officially monsoon season, it’s important to know what happens to your septic system when there’s heavy rain. Excess water, after all, can make it difficult for your system to do its job. It can also cause long-term problems and damage, especially if your system hasn’t received regular maintenance.

However, by understanding the possible effects of rainy weather, you can prevent problems before they arise.

Let’s look at how Arizona rain affects your septic system.


Generally, most rain-related issues involve the drainfield, which is directly exposed to the elements.

But when it comes to monsoon season, it’s best to know how heavy rain can potentially impact your entire system.

Here are three ways excessive rain can cause problems.

  1. Excess Water Flow

Your septic tank is designed to accommodate a certain amount of wastewater from your home.

But if rainwater merges with your wastewater, your septic tank will receive more liquid than it can handle. In turn, your tank will quickly fill up, causing water to back up into your drains or overwhelm the drainfield.

  1. Clogged Drainfield

Normally, liquid waste exits the tank and flows into the drainfield, where bacteria “digest” organic substances. This process creates purified water, which disperses into the surrounding soil.

Heavy rain poses a problem because rainwater can collect on the drainfield. If this happens, the drainfield can’t properly absorb wastewater because it’s already saturated.

Since the water won’t have anywhere to go, it can back up and overflow your septic tank. Eventually, the overflow can move into your plumbing and cause slow drains, gurgling pipes, and stinky odors.

  1. Groundwater Contamination

Excessive rain can also make it difficult for the drainfield to properly purify water.

If the drainfield is already saturated, the liquid waste won’t be able to filter through the soil. Instead, the untreated water will leak out of the pipes before it’s purified.

This wastewater can then accumulate around the drainfield and flow into groundwater, potentially contaminating nearby streams and water sources.


As you can see, heavy rainfall can cause serious septic issues.

There is good news, though. It’s possible to reduce your risk of potential problems before the rain begins.

Here’s how:

  • Prioritize proper septic maintenance. This includes regular septic pumpings and inspections to catch issues early. When your septic system is in good shape, it will be prepared to handle excessive rainfall.
  • Be mindful of what you flush. Avoid flushing feminine hygiene products, diapers, and paper towels. Your septic system can only break down toilet paper and human waste.
  • Pay attention to what goes down the drain. Similarly, don’t put fat, grease, oil, or chemicals in the drains. This includes bleach, gasoline, and paint thinners.
  • Conserve water. While it’s always wise to save water, it’s even more important during rainy weather. Give your system a break by limiting laundry, long showers, and baths when it’s raining.
  • Redirect runoff water. Make sure runoff isn’t combining with your wastewater. Keep gutters away from your drainfield, too.
  • Keep vehicles away from the drainfield. Avoid driving or parking cars, tractors, or motorcycles on the drainfield. Heavy equipment and vehicles can decrease the area’s absorption by compacting the soil.


Understandably, Arizona’s monsoon season can be stressful for homeowners. You might also be concerned about rain and your septic system, especially if you’ve had problems in the past.

Paradise Valley Septic is here to help. Our team of experienced technicians can lend a hand before, during, and after monsoon season. Plus, since we’re familiar with Arizona’s rainy weather, we can provide tips for helping your system stay safe during a monsoon.

To schedule an appointment, contact us at (480) 607-7763 or send us a message online.

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.

I Hear Water Running in My Septic Tank...Why?

I Hear Water Running in My Septic Tank…Why?


If you have a septic system, you’ve likely been told to watch out for gurgling or bubbling noises. This sound, after all, could be a sign of a blockage or poor draining. It’s a homeowner’s worst nightmare!

But what if you hear water running in your septic tank? Should you be concerned?

Let’s look at the potential reasons behind this mysterious noise.


While wastewater from your home does regularly flow into your septic tank, you shouldn’t hear trickling or running noises. Here are three possible causes:


    The sound of trickling water could indicate that groundwater is leaking into your tank.

    If you have a concrete septic tank, a crack could be the culprit. If you have a steel septic tank, you might be dealing with rust damage. A plastic or fiberglass septic tank can also develop a leak if there’s a crack or break.

    In each case, the physical damage allows groundwater to leak into the tank, causing a trickling or running sound.

    This is especially likely if surface runoff after a storm seeps into the ground.


    Another potential cause is improper drainage in your drainfield.

    Normally, wastewater leaves the septic tank and flows through underground lines in the drainfield. Here, the surrounding permeable soil or gravel filters the remaining water.

    But if there’s too much solids or wastewater in the drain field, the soil can clog and fail to properly drain. As a result, wastewater can flow back in the tank.


    Conventional septic systems use gravity to bring wastewater from the tank to the drainfield, which is typically installed below the tank. But if your drainfield is uphill due to your property’s layout, you’ll need a pump to move everything along.

    However, when the pump is turned off, gravity comes into play. The wastewater in the drainfield can flow back in the septic tank, causing a trickling or running noise.


A healthy septic system shouldn’t make any noise.

One exception is an aerobic septic system, which uses an air pump to stir the wastewater. Air pumps make a continuous humming noise that is light yet audible.

If you have an alarm system installed in your septic tank, you might also hear a high-pitched noise when it’s time to pump the tank.

A trickling noise, on the other hand, warrants an inspection from an experienced septic provider like Paradise Valley Septic.


The sound of water running in your septic tank can be unsettling. And while it might be tempting to ignore the noise and hope it disappears, it’s best to have a professional septic company check it out.

Besides, sounds like running water and gurgling aren’t normal. These noises could indicate a problem with your drainfield, tank, or entire system — so it’s crucial to fix them at the earliest sign.

Paradise Valley Septic is ready to inspect and repair your Arizona septic system. While we’re at it, we can explain what your septic tank should (and shouldn’t) sound like. This way, you can take care of problems before they begin.

To schedule an appointment, send us a message or call us at 480-351-1725 today.

How Much Water Can a Septic System Handle Each Day?

How Much Water Can a Septic System Handle Each Day?


Whether you’re flushing the toilet or catching up on laundry, water enters your septic system every day. It’s exactly what makes your home comfortable and functional! Yet, when we go through the motions of everyday life, it can feel like the water simply disappears into the abyss.

In reality, every septic system has a limited capacity, which is why we’re told to avoid overloading our systems with too much water. If your water usage overwhelms your septic tank, you’ll be left with a big problem and an even bigger headache.

But how much is “too much”? The answer is different for every household, but it’s possible to make an educated guess. This way, you can ensure your tank lasts for years to come.

Read on to learn how much water your septic system can handle each day.


Let’s start by looking at how wastewater moves through your trusty septic system.

When wastewater from your household reaches your septic tank, solids and liquids are separated. The solids are broken down by bacteria in the tank, while the liquids travel into the leach field. There’s also a filter that prevents solids from leaving the tank.

In the leach field, pipes with tiny holes filter the remaining wastewater into the surrounding gravel or soil. Here, bacteria in the ground digest leftover organic waste, which purifies the liquid.

This process takes time. So, if your septic tank receives a lot of wastewater at once, the solids can quickly buildup and block your leach field pipes.

The result? Slow drains, standing water in the yard, and unpleasant sewage odors.


Overloaded septic tanks are often caused by excessive water usage. This may happen if you:

  • Host a large party without pumping your septic tank first
  • Suddenly have more people living in your house
  • Have a leaky fixture, such as a running toilet

In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, a running toilet could waste up to 200 gallons of water each day. That’s a daily addition of 200 extra gallons in your tank!

Flushing anything other than toilet paper can also cause problems. If items like paper towels, feminine hygiene products, and diapers end up in your tank, they can build up and leave less room for actual wastewater.

In other cases, septic problems might be caused by physical damage, improper installation, or lack of routine maintenance.


On average, a person uses 60 to 70 gallons of water per day.

Tanks are designed with the assumption that there are two individuals in each bedroom.

Therefore, a septic tank can typically handle about 120 gallons per bedroom each day.

Residential septic tanks are generally 750 to 1,250 gallons, but the exact size of your tank depends on the size of your house. The only way to know for sure is to ask a reliable septic system provider such as Paradise Valley Septic.


The best way to stay within your tank’s limit is to understand how much water is used during daily activities.

Once a septic provider confirms your tank’s capacity, you can plan your water usage to accommodate its size.

Here’s a breakdown of how much water is used by different fixtures:

  • Washing machines: 15 to 45 gallons per load
  • Toilets: 1.28 to 7 gallons per flush
  • Showers: 17.2 gallons per shower (or 2.1 gallons per minute)
  • Bathroom sinks: 1.5 to 2.2 gallons per minute
  • Kitchen sinks: 2 to 5 gallons per minute
  • Dishwashers: 4 to 6 gallons per cycle

While these numbers are general estimates, this list shows how much H2O simple activities can use.

Additionally, older fixtures typically utilize more water. Newer high-efficiency models use less water and are at the lower end of these ranges.


If you live in the Phoenix Valley or the surrounding areas, give us a call. We can let you know how much water your septic system can handle so you can plan accordingly. Our team is also happy to provide tips on how to save water based on your household size.

With careful planning and yearly septic maintenance, your system will stay happy and healthy for years to come.  

Let Paradise Valley Septic take care of your septic system needs. To schedule an appointment, contact us at (480) 607-7763.

How Long Does It Take to Install a Septic System - Paradise Valley Septic Services



So, you’ve decided to install a septic system. Maybe you just bought land and want to build a new home. Or, perhaps it’s time to replace an old tank after 20-something years. Whatever the reason, you’re undoubtedly excited to take the leap and upgrade your property. It’s a thrilling time for any homeowner!

But when you’ve got laundry to do and guests to host, you might wonder how long it takes to install a septic system. After all, a functional home relies on a working septic system, so it’s important to understand the projected timeline.

Here’s what you need to know so you can plan accordingly.



Like building a car or house, installing a septic system takes careful planning. Moreover, the process involves much more than digging up the soil and dropping in a tank. It calls for a series of critical tasks and steps.

This will include:

1. Percolation Test

A percolation test determines the soil’s texture, consistency, and volume. It also checks how well the soil can filter wastewater correctly. This ensures a septic tank can be installed on your property to begin with. It’s an extremely important test, especially in the desert soil or Arizona.

This step involves scheduling and completing the test, as well as receiving the results. This can take up to three weeks.


2. Permit

Hopefully, your property is approved for an Arizona septic tank and its accompanying drain field. If so, you’ll need to get a permit from your city. Every county and city have different requirements, so it’s crucial to check with your local codes.

Generally, the application and approval process can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. But again, this will be different for each area.


3. Design

After you have acquired the necessary permits, an engineer can plan your septic system and drain field. The details will depend on many factors, like the slope of your land and nearby trees. If you work with a reliable and professional septic system provider, they should be able to coordinate the design process.

Because your septic system must be designed to suit your property, this step can take two to three weeks or longer.



After you’ve received the percolation test, permits, and design plans, it’s time to schedule your professional septic tank installation.

From start to finish, the installation process can take anywhere from several days to three weeks.

Again, the completion time will depend on a wide range of factors, including your property, soil, and size of septic tank. The process will also involve one or more inspections to confirm everything is going according to plan.



Every septic system is different. Therefore, it’s impossible to know precisely how long it takes to install a septic system. But with a reliable provider like Paradise Valley Septic, you can obtain a customized estimation from the very beginning.

For more than 50 years, we’ve provided residential septic services to homes and businesses in the Phoenix Valley. Our experienced technicians are also well-versed in Arizona’s desert land, so we know how to handle the unique soil in our area.

After learning about your needs and inspecting your property, we can estimate how long the project may take. So, whether you’re moving into a new home or hosting a party, you’ll be able to plan ahead.

Paradise Valley Septic can take care of your regular maintenance and pumping needs as well. To learn more, contact us at (480) 607-7763 or send us a message online.


How Much Does It Cost to Install a Septic System - Paradise Valley Septic Services



One of the biggest questions homeowners have about installing a new septic system is how much is it going to cost?

Like any other significant home purchase, a quick internet search for septic system installation costs will no doubt produce a wide range of price estimates—anywhere from $1,500 to $15,000 for high-end systems—but ultimately it will depend on the location of your home and the type of septic system that is best for where you live.



Assuming you want to install a conventional (or basic) septic system, several things will factor into the total cost. Among them are the main components of a septic system, including the tank itself, along with the pipes, risers and gravel for the drainfield. Also included in the price will be any permits the homeowner may need, as well as an initial soil test and design and installation costs.



For many homeowners, especially those in rural areas, this is a worthy investment. A septic system requires only regular maintenance and in return improves overall water efficiency in your household and saves you from having to pay high monthly water bills.

Having a home septic system also means once the waste and contaminants are treated in the tank and drainfield, fresh water is released back into the ground to nourish the soil and the surrounding plant life, making it an environmentally friendly choice for water treatment.


The thing to remember about septic systems is that once you pay the initial installation fee, routine care and maintenance are all you should need to worry about. If you are smart and service your system regularly, that initial cost will more than pay for itself over time—and actually end up saving you money.

However, ongoing maintenance is not just about having your tank inspected and pumped on a regular basis; it also means being smart about water conservation in the home and making sure only the right things end up getting flushed down the toilet or washed down the kitchen sink.

Be sure to follow these important tips to preserve the life of your septic system:

  • Avoid overloading your system with too much water. Your tank needs time to separate sludge and scum from the water, so sending too much water through your pipes at once can result in solid waste getting into your drainfield pipes, clogging them up and creating pools of unsanitary standing water. Doing several back-to-back loads of laundry, for example, should be avoided.


  • Your toilet or sink is not a trash can. Solids that cannot be broken down naturally in a septic tank can find their way into the drainage pipes and clog them. Avoid sending egg shells, coffee grounds, fruit skins and other food waste down the drain, and the same goes for paint, paint thinner, oil and grease, medications, feminine hygiene products, plastics and cat litter.


  • Use septic-safe products and limit the use of chemicals. There are several brands of toilet paper, detergents, soaps and cleaners that proclaim they’re “septic safe” right on the label. Whenever possible, choose these products to keep your septic system functioning optimally.



If you’re thinking about installing a septic system in your Arizona home, call Paradise Septic at (480) 351-1725 or send us a message to get started.

Our experienced technicians will spend time answering all of your questions about equipment, installation and permit costs so you can get a better idea of your investment. Then, once your septic system is installed, we will take care of routine maintenance so you can enjoy peace of mind for the life of your system.

Is Vinegar Bad for Septic Systems?


In recent years, natural cleaning products have become increasingly popular. Much of this has to do with the growing awareness around harsh chemicals in commercial cleaners. For starters, our families come in contact with these products. These cleaners also end up in the drain, and eventually, the septic system.

Needless to say, as more folks learn about the potential dangers of chemical cleaners, they’re turning to more natural alternatives.

Vinegar is just one example. In the kitchen, this pantry staple is often used for foods like marinades and dressings. But beyond the dinner plate, vinegar also doubles as an excellent cleaning product.

Yet, it’s common to wonder if vinegar is bad for your septic system. Vinegar, after all, is extremely pungent. And since it’s no secret septic systems are sensitive beasts, it’s important to know if vinegar is a smart option.



Let’s talk about why you might want to skip commercial cleaners in the first place.

From toilet bowl cleaners to drain openers, conventional products are often full of harsh chemicals. And while these products do fight “bad” bacteria, they can kill the good guys, too.

Remember, when these products go down the drain, they inevitably end up in your septic tank. Here, they can potentially destroy the bacteria responsible for breaking down waste. These chemicals might even find their way into the drainfield and contaminate the soil.

Commercial cleaning products also fill your home with harmful fumes, which can be especially dangerous for young children, pets, or family members with breathing issues.



As families make the shift toward natural, earth-friendly lifestyles, vinegar has become the cleaner of choice.

Not only is it inexpensive, but it’s gentle enough to use around the home. At the same time, its acidity gives it amazing cleaning power. Vinegar dissolves sticky build ups, soap scum and dirt. It can also control mold and freshen up surfaces in the bathroom and kitchen.

Now, here’s the good news. By the time it reaches your septic tank, vinegar is just as gentle! It’s non-toxic and all-natural, so it isn’t bad for your septic system.



Aside from using gentler cleaners, taking care of your system involves certain habits. You and your family should:

  • conserve water
  • avoid flushing solids
  • avoid pouring grease, fats, and oils down the drain
  • limit garbage disposal use

Finally, it’s crucial to prioritize yearly septic maintenance. This will keep your system healthy and prevent expensive problems (and headaches) later on.



If you prefer green cleaning products, you’ll be happy to know that vinegar isn’t bad for your septic system. However, if you absolutely must use commercial cleaners, we recommend using products labeled as “septic safe.”

In the meantime, Paradise Valley Septic can take care of your septic maintenance needs. Our experienced technicians will examine your system and perform regular pumping. Together, we can help your septic system thrive for years to come.

To schedule an appointment, contact us at (480) 607-7763.

What Are the Different Types of Septic Systems?


When it’s time to install or replace a septic system, there a few things to keep in mind. For starters, you’ll need to find the best spot for your drainfield, which can’t be near bushes or trees. You’ll also have to remember to get regular septic pumping, even if it’s working well.

But before the installation process can start, you’ll need to know the best type of septic system for your property. This is especially important if your property has unique conditions that affect proper wastewater disposal. After all, if your septic system isn’t designed to work with your environment, you’ll end up with a very expensive problem.

The different types of septic systems fall under two categories: conventional systems and alternative systems. And when it comes to alternative systems, there are more than 20 types to choose from.

Read on for a brief rundown on your options.



A conventional system is also known as a basic or standard system. The process starts in the septic tank, which holds wastewater from your home. Over time, the wastewater separates into layers. The solids sink to the bottom, where naturally-occurring bacteria break it down. Meanwhile, the lighter solids and grease float to the top of the tank.

The middle layer consists of partially treated wastewater. As gravity (or pumps) pushes it out of the tank, it flows into the drainfield, or the leach field. The drainfield is made of underground pipes that are surrounded by permeable soil or gravel. It also has bacteria that removes impurities by digesting organic materials.

You can’t go wrong with a conventional septic system. But if your property doesn’t have the right conditions, you might need an alternative septic system.



Sometimes, an area might not be suitable for a conventional system. For example, a high water table can disrupt proper drainage. Some soil types or depths aren’t appropriate of conventional systems as well. In these scenarios, an alternative system is ideal.

Like conventional systems, alternative septic systems use septic tanks. The difference is in the way alternative systems properly handle wastewater.

Here are a few examples of alternative septic systems:


Intermittent Sand Filter System

If an area doesn’t have enough soil to treat wastewater, a sand filter system can help. In this system, wastewater passes through a sand filter before it’s dispersed in the soil.


Recirculating Sand Filter System

A loop can be added to a sand filter system. Before wastewater leaves the tank, it recirculates and passes through the sand filter twice.


Mound Septic System

If there’s an issue with soil depth or type, the drain field can be installed above ground level. This is called the mound. It’s made of a sand fill with a gravel-filled bed and pipes.


Evapotranspiration Septic System

This system disposes wastewater through evaporation. Specifically, it evaporates through nearby grass, plants, and sand. It’s only recommended for dry environments that get less than 24” of rainfall each year.


Aerobic Treatment Unit

An aerobic treatment unit uses oxygen to break down organic waste. Compared to standard systems, the process is faster, and the discharged water is cleaner. This system is also less likely to develop septic problems.


Low-Pressure Pipe Septic Systems

If your property has slightly shallow soil, you may be able to use a low-pressure pipe (LPP) system. It’s like a standard system. However, it has a pumping chamber — also known as a dosing chamber — between the tank and drainfield. Twice a day, the LPP will push wastewater through the chamber and to the drainfield.



This list includes just a couple examples of alternative systems. After all, there are so many different types of septic systems to pick from! Understandably, the selection process can get quite overwhelming.

You’re not in this alone, though. At Paradise Valley Septic, our experienced septic providers know how to select the best septic system for your home. We’ll also examine your property, soil, and any potential constraints before the septic drilling begins.

From there, our team can take all of your septic maintenance needs over the years. This way, you can be sure that your new system lasts for years.

Have questions? Feel free to contact us at (480) 607-7763.

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