What’s the Ideal Septic System Size?

septic system size, septic system

More residents are choosing to install a septic system when they build a new home. This is usually more affordable compared to connecting it to a municipal sewer line. When you plan the installation, you will need to determine the optimum septic system size for your type of residence. 

Why Septic System Size Matters

Septic systems hold wastewater for about 24 hours. During this time, the bacteria separate the solids from the liquid before releasing the effluent to the drain field. If the system is too small for the size of the home, the pipes will build too much pressure, preventing waste from entering the tank. The excess water dilutes the bacteria and inhibits waste breakdown.

An overly large septic system is just as counterproductive. A large tank won’t have enough water to encourage bacteria growth.

Both scenarios lead to inefficient waste breakdown, causing increased septic pumping and inspection intervals. 

Septic System Sizing Guidelines

Water usage rather than house size determines the septic system size. Of course, larger homes typically have more occupants, resulting in more water use. 

Consider this rough guide:

  • Two-bedroom or 1,500-square-feet home: 750-gallon septic system
  • Three-bedroom or 2,500-square-feet home: 1,000-gallon septic system
  • Four-bedroom or 3,500-square-feet home: 1,250-gallon septic system

These are just rough estimates. Size requirements may also vary depending on region-specific building codes. An inspector will determine the optimal size based on all of the above factors. 

The takeaway here is that bigger is not better. Homeowners also need to exercise daily septic practices to keep the system in good order. This means all the common-sense care, such as not dumping solids down the toilet or pouring grease down the drain.

We Maintain Your Septic System

Lil John Sanitary Services performs septic checkups for homes and grease trap maintenance for Bellingham businesses. Septic systems are not one-size-fits-all units; septic system size matters for optimal waste. management

Maintenance for all Septic System Sizes

Serving Bellingham, Ferndale, Lynden, Everson, Deming, Lummi Island, Nooksack, Blaine, Whatcom & Skagit Counties, Maple Falls, Bow Birch Bay, Custer, and Acme