My Septic Tank Was Just Pumped—Why Is It Full Again?

October 28, 2021 Published by Leave your thoughts

Modern plumbing systems are nothing short of engineering marvels. The advent of indoor plumbing was instrumental in decreasing disease and allowing everyone to live more sanitary lives. But, like any system in your home, your septic system requires maintenance.

If you’ve ever thought, “I just had my septic tank pumped, and it’s full again,” then you understand the difficulties that a seemingly malfunctioning septic tank can pose.

There are things you can do, though, to diagnose the problem. Here are some septic system troubleshooting tips.

Bad drain field

This is one of the more common problems that people have with their septic tank. The drain field is the area where the treated water from your septic tank is released. This typically happens below ground.

When working correctly, the drain field absorbs the water from the septic tank. When functioning incorrectly (like after a heavy rain), the drain field is saturated and doesn’t absorb the water being released from the septic tank. This can cause backups in your septic tank and lead to it being full again, even if it was just pumped.

Excess water use

Having the thought, “I just had my septic tank pumped, and it’s full again,” can be frustrating—especially if you don’t know why your septic tank is full again. Unfortunately, it might be due to using too much water.

The septic system needs time to operate, and if you use too much water at one time, it might flow into your septic tank faster than it can flow out, resulting in the tank becoming full again. Keep in mind that leaky faucets or toilets can contribute to this, so check your plumbing fixtures to make sure they aren’t the culprits.


A blockage or clog in one of the pipes running to and from your septic tank can cause issues with the drainage and filling system. With septic system troubleshooting, you’ll need to find out where the clog is. If all your drains are slow to drain, then the clog could be in a pipe leading away from the house.

If sewage is backing up in your home or bubbling up around the tank’s exterior, then the blockage could be in your septic tank’s effluent filter or outlet baffle. These complications could make you think your septic system is full again when you might just need to have some pipes cleared.

Normal water level

To function, a septic tank is supposed to be full—but this doesn’t mean that the tank is filled completely to the brim with water, as there needs to be space to let water in. Normally, a septic tank is filled about 80 percent of the way, including the sludge layer on top.

After you’ve had your tank pumped, the total water level will likely go down. A few days of normal water use will have it back up to its normal level. So, if your septic tank is full again after having it pumped, as long as it’s not overfilled, that’s not a bad thing.

Call for septic services today

Hopefully, these septic system troubleshooting tips have been helpful. If you need the aid of professionals, call us at Cleveland Septic. We can draw on decades of experience to help you solve any septic troubles that you may have.

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