Most Tumwater homes and businesses are connected to LOTT's sewer system. If you aren't connected to LOTT's system then you probably have a private septic system. Private septic systems capture and treat wastewater onsite.
Septic systems work by containing wastewater in the septic tank long enough for the solids to sink to the bottom and the oils, grease and other "floatables" move to the top. The liquid wastewater then exits the tank into a drainfield which allows the wastewater to be filtered through the soil. The soils and other materials that do not discharge to the drainfield should be cleaned at least once every three years.
While septic systems aren't necessarily bad, in high density areas - such as Tumwater- they can be really problematic as small issues are quickly amplified by huge numbers of septic systems. In dense urban areas, there is generally too much sewage discharging to the ground for the soil microbes to properly treat, and too little space to install new systems on a property if the older one fails.
Converting from septic to sewer can help save you time, money, and protect your health. LOTT has a rebate program that can help make the switch more cost effective. To apply, fill out the following form:
Want to know more about the program? Visit LOTT's website https://lottcleanwater.org/programs/septic-to-sewer-rebates/