While talking to a homeowner he brought up a number of
concern about his
My operations person shows up unannounced. My operations
not give me an explanation of services. My
operations person has never
spoken to me about my septic system. I don't know when
the tank was last
pumped. I do not know my operators name (off the top of
my head). All I
get is a bill twice a year.
First, I would recommend contacting your service person and
I'm not in the business of taking away customers
from other operators; it's
not my style.
So, if your system is running well, I generally recommend that
with their same operator.
If for any reason you can't resolve your differences, I would be
happy to talk
with you face-to-face about managing your system.
One thing you might do is find out the next time your operator
over and follow him around while he does his job and pick his
When I do operations on a system you are welcome to walk around with me, ask me
questions, help me and take pictures or video.
If you are not at home when the State requires me to do
operations, I will come out to your home when you are
there at no charge to explain what I do and teach you
about your system.
Even if I have to make a special trip to the other side of the
State I will come out to teach you about your system for
free. I live near Charlotte and Waynesville (on the
weekends). I offer operations as far away as Cape
Hatteras. Just ask.
Normally, the operator notes in his records, how close the tank
is to needing to be pumped. He may also note this on the
form he submits to the county.
It will look something like, "Tank does not need to be pumped at this time." or
"Tank is 5% full of scum and sludge." In North Carolina
we normally pump when the tank reaches 33% of capacity.
I'm not aware of any rule which says the operator must
send you a summary of services after a visit, but this is a
normal, customary part of operations service. A report to
the homeowner was recommended at the subsurface operator
training I attended at North Carolina State University (NCSU)
and the manufacturers I have trained with also recommend this
I personally send my clients the information I send to the
county and I send the client a brief summary letter
explaining the information in the report. The county
report forms are a little confusing if you are not a septic
operator. My letter explains any problems or areas of
concern in plain English. It also notes how full the tank
is of scum and sludge and whether it needs to be pumped or
if it will need to be pumped in the near future. I also
give a brief overview of the services I performed.
If the system is out of compliance I give you a specific heads
up about this before I contact the county. And, be aware
that an out of compliance system has to be reported by me to the
county within 48 hours. Out of compliance usually means
the water quality samples were not within an acceptable range.
As far as the contractor showing up unannounced, I would discuss
this with him directly. You are correct in that he
probably has this as a standard condition of his contract.
Personally, I notify customers in advance that I will be showing
up unless we have other arrangements.
This actually has purpose for me because sometimes I need a
customer to cut off their tank's pump so I can run an efficiency
test on the pump.
I certainly do understand about the odd experience of
unannounced, surprise visit.
Serving Western North Carolina
Charlotte & The Foothills
and the Inner & Outer Banks