DIY Cesspool Aeration

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Septic tanks are buried in the ground.
Septic tanks are buried in the ground. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

A cesspool is one of your home's most important systems, but it is also an area with which you don't want to have constant contact. A cesspool's function is to collect solid waste, convert it to liquid and seep the liquid into the surrounding soil. A cesspool system is not designed to handle certain substances, such as grease, because such materials can build up over time and clog the system. Aerating a cesspool is the process of accessing the septic tank opening and treating it with sulfuric acid to boost functionality.

Things You'll Need

  • Home plans or blueprints
  • Shovel
  • Crowbar
  • Basic toolkit
  • Aerator
  • Sulfuric acid

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Locate the septic tank lid or access port. Review the blueprint for your home or ground plan to find the location of the tank. Walk through the basement and observe the direction of the piping leading out the walls' underground level. Follow the pipes to the outside to discover the lid.

Use a metal detector to scan the ground area where you suspect the septic tank lid is located, if the hatch is not immediately visible. Access to the cesspool may be underground. Pay attention to strong readings from the metal detector, which indicate a solid piece of metal such as the one used to cap the cesspool.

Dig 1 to 2 feet deep to uncover the cesspool lid, if necessary. Examine the lid to determine what kind of tool is necessary to remove it. For example, use a crowbar to wedge lids that have small inserts on the edges.

Attach the aerator to your cesspool's inspection ports or primary access lid, per the machine's instructions. Ensure that the aerator's clamps are secured to the port and then turn the machine on. The high pressured air breaks down solid waste allowing the sludge to seep out naturally.

Add the appropriate amount of sulfuric acid to your tank based on its size. Err on the side of adding less acid because too much can destroy the natural occurring bacteria needed to make the cesspool work properly.

References

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