When to Consider Septic Tank Replacement in NJ

Septic Tank Replacement in NJ – Call Now for a FREE Cost Estimate!


At 2 Plumbers, we occasionally get calls from frantic homeowners who are dealing with a septic tank that’s broken or leaking severely, sometimes accompanied by backed up drains and sewage odors. When you have an emergency situation and call a sewer service company for septic tank services, there’s a chance that your septic tank or other septic system components may be beyond the point of repair. At that point, you’ll need pipe, drainfield, or septic tank replacement in NJ.

Septic tanks most commonly fail as a result of corrosion, which occurs after a long period of aging and exposure to corrosive substances. The root of the problem is often natural bacteria that live in septic tanks and sewer lines, which break down organic waste. Eventually, these bacteria eat away at even strong concrete, meaning you’ll need septic tank replacement.

Bacterial Corrosion & Your Septic Tank

Inside of your septic tank live millions upon millions of microscopic bacteria. These tiny, relatively simple organisms break down the organic materials present in sewage, making them an important part of the septic system waste management process. Over decades of use, however, some of these bacteria cause gradual septic tank corrosion.

Sewage contains organic compounds that can oxidize into sulfates. Inside a septic tank, dissolved oxygen is depleted as the bacteria catabolize organics. In the absence of dissolved oxygen and nitrates, a type of anaerobic bacteria known as “sulfate reducing bacteria” reduce those sulfates to hydrogen sulfide, which provides the SRBs with a source of oxygen for catabolizing organic waste.

These bacterial processes that generate hydrogen sulfide– the very gas that gives raw sewage its distinctive odor of rotten eggs– depends on several local factors, including:

  • Oxygen concentration in the sewage. Above a threshold of 0.1 mg.l−1, sulfides in the sewer sludge will by oxidized by oxygen.
  • Temperature. Higher temperatures are conducive to hydrogen sulfide production.
  • pH. The optimal pH for hydrogen sulfide production is 7.5-8, although it can form in a pH range of anywhere from 5.5 to 9.
  • Sulfate concentration.
  • Nutrient concentration.
  • Biochemical oxygen demand.

When hydrogen sulfide is released, some of it accumulates in the headspace above the scum and sludge inside the septic tank. As it condenses in stationary water droplets, local bacteria metabolize the hydrogen sulfide into highly corrosive sulfuric acid. The quantities are minute, years of gradual corrosion will eventually take their toll on steel and concrete septic tanks.

The Service Life of Your Septic Tank

Once a brand new septic tank is installed, you won’t have to think about septic tank replacement in NJ for a long time to come. However, as with all things, a septic tank’s life expectancy is ultimately finite.

  • Steel septic tanks generally meet their demise as a result of rusting out. This process is affected by soil acidity and the quality of the steel, but after 15-20 years, a steel septic tank will be severely affected by rust.
  • Concrete septic tanks are longer lived, lasting up to 40 years before you’ll need septic tank replacement. However, their lifespan can be shortened by poor quality concrete or unusually acidic local groundwater.

So in general, you’re looking at anywhere from 15 to 40 years between the initial septic tank installation and the eventual need for septic tank replacement.

Need Septic Tank Replacement in NJ? Call Us Today!

At 2 Plumbers, our experienced septic service contractors are always available for quality professional septic tank replacement and installation in New Jersey. Call us any time for fast, responsive same-day service, at 201-765-0466.

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