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"I knew something was wrong with the septic system but other companies I called were only interested in pumping out the septic tank. was" the only on who wanted to get to the bottom of the problem. They squeezed me into their schedule and got the problem fixed quickly and at what I thought was a very reasonable price considering it required bringing in a back-hoe to dig up the pipe.

-James L.

"Excellent service. I was able to set up the appointment to fit my schedule and confirmed the arrival time early in the morning. I plan to use them in the future and highly recommend the company.

-james G.

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Local Articles in Baltimore

Septic tank

How To Maintain a Septic System

A contractor describes how to properly maintain your septic system and drain field. Here are five tips to help.

man flushing septic system

Septic Systems

Septic systems are commonly used in rural areas and sometimes in areas not served by a municipal sewage system. Septic systems absorb household sewage and distribute the liquid waste into a designated leach field where natural processes can reclaim it. However, solid wastes and grease must be pumped out of the septic system periodically.

plumber lowering camera into sewer pipe

A backed up toilet, sink or shower can cause a homeowner to run to their computer for the first plumber’s number they can find.

Septic tank worker on the job

Don't ignore a foul smell coming from your septic tank. The problem will only get worse.

professional septic tank pumper cleaning residential tank

Follow these safety precautions when working on or near your septic system.

septic tank distribution box (Photo by Eldon Lindsay)

Do you believe these septic tank suburban legends?

Angie's Answers


In almost all areas, you have to get a permit from the county or city to rebuild a septic tank or leach field - permit cost typically $150-600, though can reach $2000 in some areas for a new installation. The reason is they will then come out and inspect the installation and review the test results from the civil engineer, from whom a design and soil percolation test and construction inspection report will be required before they issue an operating permit.

If you have a question on the process, the county or city most likely has a permit requirements info sheet on their website describing the process and requirements - googel your locale name combined with a search phrase like this - leach field test

The real reason a permit is required is to be sure an engineer designs the field, that the leach field is designed to match the existing soil conditions, and that it is built to the design so hopefully it will neither break through to the surface, contaminate the groundwater, nor contaminate nearby wells or waterways, thereby creating a public nuisance and health hazard.

The reason for the initial presale infiltration capacity test you had done is to provide some assurance to the buyer that the system is likely to work as needed, at least for the forseeable future, and is based on the number of bedrooms and sometimes number of bathrooms in the house as the basis for estimating the "load" the system is likely to see. There are different tests in different locales - some use a minimal criteria of 3 or 4 gpm flow for 20 minutes, other use the more common design guide of 150gpd (gallons per day) per bedroom in the house- some prorated for a 1 hour period, some far more strict by requiring a 24 hour test. 300 gallons in 45 minutes is an extremely stringent criteria - I would check with the buyilding department that this is right, because this adds up to a rate of 9600 gallon sper day - of about 64 bedrooms worth of capacity ! I am sure I have never ever seen that strict a criteria for a residential (as opposed to resort/ hotel/ commercial) septic system, so I would check that the tester did not somewhere add a zero to the volume to be pumped or something.

Also, returning water is not a viable basis for failing the test - the proper way to conduct a test is to pump the specified amount of water, and verify that the water level at the discharge pipe has returned to the original level by the end of the specified time - usually to the invert (bottom) of the pipe, but generally a conditional or "warning" approval will be given to one that does not raise the water table above the top of the 4" discharge pipe during the test time. You might discuss this with the civil engineer before going ahead with a new leach field construction - to me it sounds like the test may have been rigged to fail,, because in-service leach fields would not take 300 gallons of water without raising the water level to the top of the pipe for a period, even though they could take that flow for an extended period ot time.


I would guess that the wrong term was used to describe your problem. What was probably meant was that the leach field was saturated. This is to say that the soil around your leach field is saturated with solids from the septic tank and you may have to have it replaced. If you do not have the tank pumped often enough this can happen as well as just aging of the system. Many people ignore the septic till there is a problem do to out of sight out of mind or the false belief they are saving money. If you have a large family you may have to have the tank pumped every 2 or three years. Some of the towns around here have passed laws to that effect to avoid such problems.



There should be no growth other than grass on your leach field - for brush, bushes or trees use the kill-all Roundup herbicide to kill off the entire plant. For roots intruding from outside the leach field, use a root killer like RootX once or twice a year - I would do two treatments a month apart initially if you have root problems. Unfortunately, just killing the roots is not going to solve the problem you currently have, because they decay extremely slowly or not at all in a leach field due to the saturated and greasy conditions - they are almost embalmed in the sludge. If you have a significant problem, you may have to kill them, then get them routed out. This can be a $500-1000 job depending on how your field is designed and how accessible the inlets of the field distribution pipes are.

Septic Tank Cleaning reviews in Baltimore


I am very pleased with their service. They are very responsive and seem to really know what they are doing. The price was what I expected. They are very busy. They had hoped to get to me earlier in the day but couldn't get there until 2pm. The important part is that they got the job done well, but I did have to juggle my schedule a little bit.

The man was extremely clean, courteous and very experienced. He answered all of our questions and we had many! We will absolutely be using this service in the future.

It went well. The company came when they said they would, cleaned the septic tank, left a package of enzymes that I had ordered, and left without leaving any mess.

Trying to have extensive work done in a very short time prior to moving was stressful. was very professional & efficient, & performed the job well.

was very efficient in performing the perk test. Kept landscaping damage to a minimum. They came out to help draw up plans to submit to the health department, and even met with the guy from the health department for us. Finally came out and did the work as promised.

It was a great experience with Fogles. I see why they are highly trusted in the area. The technician that came out was ontime and gave us valuable advice in managing our septic system for the long haul. He was careful in making sure I understood the type of tank, size, and the layout of the system in the yard.
When doing research I found their ...More inspection cost in the middle of the road, but chose them because they were recommended by other friends.
- Jason J.

Septic Tank Services in Baltimore

Companies below are listed in alphabetical order. To view top rated service providers along with reviews and ratings, Join Angie's List Now!


906 Montgomery Street

Abend Plumbing And Heating LLC

407 Bon Air Ave

Accel Plumbing and Heating

14029 Monticello Dr

Additions Etc LLC

2513 Steel Ave

Alexander Plumbing Services Inc

53 Crocus Ct

All Nite Sewer & Drain Cleaning LLC

5908 Hamilton Ave

Amore Enterprises LLC

12203 Keymar Rd

Arctic Plumbing & Air

766 State Route 3 N

Baltimore Plumber

400 East Pratt Street

Bamford Plumbing & Heating Inc

6800 Martin Ave

Bases Covered Home Inspections, LLC

15030 Oak Orchard Road
New Windsor

BDP Excavating

19 Reese Ave


1356 W Jarrettsville Rd
Forest Hill

Benjamin Franklin Plumbing

2600 Forest Glen Rd
Silver Spring

Bogan's Plumbing / PlumbCrazy

1302 Continental Dr


24211 Laytonsville Rd

Dan Nichols Contractor

5777 White Rock Road

Donald S Watts Co

3150 Baltimore Blvd

Dunne Wright Services Llc

1412 Crain Hwy N
Glen Burnie

Earl Preston Jr Inc & Whiteford Septic

4045-C Federal Hill Rd.

Five Star Plumbing Services

728 Baltimore Pike
Bel Air

Fogle's Septic Service

580 Obrecht Rd

Fred The Plumber

712 Chestnut Hill Rd
Forest Hill

Glenoak Plumbing Inc

12611 Harewood Rd

Hall's Septic Services

1410 N Tucker Rd

Inti Enterprises, Luis Maldonado

1205 Overbrook Road





Len The Plumber

1552 Ridgely St

Lessner Services

PO Box 272

Maryland Waterproofing & Radon Reduction Inc

8259 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd

Michael & Son Svc Inc

5740 General Washington Dr

Mitchell Plumbing & Heating Inc

11650 Eastern Ave
Middle River


1212 Somerset Rd

Mr Rooter Plumbing & Heating

3701 Commerce Dr

Naumann Plumbing, LLC

2131 Espey Court Suite 9


Glen Burnie

Ponder Painting

1049 Dumbarton Rd
Glen Burnie


PO BOX 199
Mount Airy

Roto-Rooter Plumbing & Drain Services

812 W Patapsco Ave

RTF Associates Inc

142 E Main St

Scardina Home Services

8082 Veterans Highway

Sellars Concrete Contractors LLC

6285 Shady Side Road
Shady Side

Stormwater Facilities, Inc

742 Cecil Avenue N


PO Box 4486

The Pearce Group Home Inspections

15922 A E Mullinix Rd

Todd's Excavating LLC

3918 Emrick Ln

Van Sant Plumbing and Heating

2701 Back Acre Cir
Mount Airy

WA Gambrill Inc

318 E Pennsylvania Ave

Water Check

1205 Mayo Rd

WRF & Son Plumbing & Heating Inc

15 N Main St
Mount Airy

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