When you’re a homeowner, you may find yourself thinking, “Nobody said there’d be a quiz.” But homeownership tends to raise a lot of questions, not least of which when it comes to home plumbing installations. For instance, if you use septic services in the Sacramento area, you may be wondering, “How much does it cost to convert your septic system to a public sewer? And for that matter, is it worth it?” Those are all good questions, so let’s take a closer look.
Can you change a septic system to a sewer?
The short answer: yes, you can. Septic systems do have their advantages. They’re self-contained, so by definition, they’re off-grid. They’re generally durable, requiring minimal maintenance — a pumping every one to three years, with a bit of tinkering between times — with minimal fuss. But as we’re about to see, they’re not always the best solution.
Why Sacramento Homeowners Switch from Septic to Sewer
Aging Septic System
Septic systems are durable, not immortal. Like any other part of your plumbing, your septic tank and drain field will eventually require replacement. Additionally, municipalities may require a sewer hookup in place of a replacement septic system. However, there is an upshot: the low-maintenance nature of a sewer hookup can increase your home’s value.
Septic System Damage
Improper materials being flushed or poured down drains can obliterate the bacteria that let your septic system work or can cause damage to the drain field. Root incursions, seismic events, and activity near the drain field can all cause issues of their own. Some of these problems can be addressed with septic system repair, but in extreme cases replacement may make more sense.
One of the biggest differences between a septic system and a sewer connection is how much household waste each can handle. It’s much easier to overload a septic system than it is to overload a sewer. A growing family doesn’t just use the bathroom more. The higher volume of things like laundry and dishes may tax your septic system beyond its capabilities. Faced with replacement costs, some homeowners decide to switch to a sewer system instead.
Additional Sewer System Considerations
You may be sick of the repairs, the stink, or the inconvenience of septic. But before you get your hopes up on a municipal sewer hookup, there are a few considerations to bear in mind.
The first question to ask is whether your area even has a municipal sewer system. Indeed, the reason so many homes — especially in remote areas, or in towns that were or are still unincorporated — is that the septic system is meant to handle home and business wastewater in the absence of other facilities.
Septic Conversion Permits
You knew there’d be paperwork. Site preparation, digging, and plumbing all require permits; in addition, you’ll also need to know the location of existing utilities like power, cable, water, and gas, since you’ll incur significant fines and the wrath of your neighbors if you disrupt service. Once it’s completed, the work will also need to be inspected and cleared.
Septic to Sewer Conversion Costs
Several considerations determine the cost of your project. The length of the pipe running from your septic system to the sewer is only one concern. You’ll also need to account for hookup fees and recurring service fees. Some homeowners decide that the longer-term costs simply aren’t worthwhile as long as their septic system holds out. Ace Plumbing will ensure that you understand the full scope of the work, and the costs — both immediate and longer-term — before we turn even a single spadeful of earth.
What to Expect from a Septic to Sewer Conversion in Sacramento
If you’re considering this process, it’s worth checking with your municipality to see what incentives may be available for the conversion. Some will offset installation costs, or you may be able to find loans, grants, or home improvement financing depending on your needs and location. This isn’t a brief process, so it’s important to choose a Sacramento sewer contractor with the tools and knowledge necessary to minimize disruption to your life and routine.
Considering Switching to Sewer in the Greater Sacramento area? Call us Today for an Estimate!
Unlike a new toilet installation or a garbage disposal replacement, converting from septic to sewer isn’t for the faint of heart. But fear not! A call or email to Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning is your first step to understanding this process, and getting a written quote so you can make an informed decision.