What are Septic Tank Risers and Why Do I Need Them?

A septic tank riser installed on a buried septic tank

Septic tank risers play an essential role in maintaining your septic system. In this article, we’ll look at septic tank risers, explaining what they are, the different types and sizes available, and, most importantly, why you should consider installing one. Whether you’re a homeowner looking to make septic maintenance easier or simply curious about how risers can benefit your septic tank, we’ve got you covered in this blog.

What is a Septic Tank Riser

Septic tank risers are extensions added to your septic tank’s access points. They create easy and convenient access to the tank’s components, including the inlet pipe and outlet filter. Risers are typically made of durable materials like polyethylene plastics. They’re designed to be airtight to prevent wastewater from seeping into the ground and prevent odors and gases from escaping into the air. 

Riser Types and Sizes

Risers are usually cylindrical and vary in size to accommodate different septic tank setups. Heights typically range from 12 to 24 inches, determined by the distance from the tank’s top to ground level. For our installations, ACE uses two types of risers:

  • Corrugated Risers: These are cylindrical pipes cut to size. These are most commonly used for concrete tanks that can’t use standardized risers.
  • Standardized Risers: These are designed for specific tank brands, commonly in 6″ and 12″ sizes. These shorter risers can be combined to reach the necessary height.

Choosing the right type and size of riser is essential for a proper fit with your septic tank’s access points.

Why Should I Have a Riser?

There are several reasons why installing a septic tank riser is beneficial for any homeowner:

  1. Easy Access for Inspection and Maintenance: Septic tank risers provide immediate access to your tank’s components. This access makes routine inspections, maintenance, and pumping much simpler and more cost-effective. Accessing your septic tank without risers can require excavation, which can be time-consuming, expensive, and harmful to your yard.
  2.  Preventing Ground Disturbance: Traditional septic tank access involves digging, which can damage your lawn or landscaping. Risers eliminate the need for digging, preserving the aesthetics of your property.  
  3.  Prevents contamination and harmful odors: Airtight and watertight risers protect your health, your property, and the environment from pollutants. A septic tank that isn’t watertight won’t pass inspections and may lead homeowners to incur fines for contamination.

This installation of a septic riser allows for easier access to the tank after it is fully buried.

How to Install a Riser

While installing a septic tank riser is best left to professionals, understanding the basic steps involved can be helpful:

  1. Locate the Access Points: Identify the access points on your septic tank where risers will be installed. These are typically found near the tank’s inlet and outlet pipes.
  2.  Excavate the Area: Carefully dig around the access points to expose the top of the septic tank. Be cautious not to damage the tank or its components during excavation.
  3.  Attach the Riser: Connect the riser to the access point using a secure, watertight seal. Ensure it fits snugly and does not allow any fluids, gases, or odors to escape.
  4.  Secure the Lid: Install a lid on top of the riser to seal the access point securely. The lid should be sturdy and tamper-resistant.
  5.  Backfill and Restore: Replace the soil and restore the landscaping around the riser. Make sure the area is level and free from any debris.
  6.  Regular Inspection: Once the riser is in place, perform regular inspections and maintenance, as needed, without the hassle of excavation.

Septic tank risers are invaluable additions to any septic system. They simplify maintenance, reduce costs, and enhance safety while preserving your property’s aesthetics. If you’re a homeowner with a septic tank, consider installing a riser to make your life easier and ensure the efficient operation of your septic system. If you’d like help with your septic system or installation of a riser, contact ACE Septic & Waste.

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