Massachusetts DEP guide to caring for your septic system: http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/massdep/water/wastewater/caring-for-septic-system-reference-guide-for-homeowner.html
US EPA "A Homeowner's Guide to Septic Systems" for download: http://www.epa.gov/owm/septic/pubs/homeowner_guide_long.pdf
Septic System Care
Homes in the watershed rely on septic systems for wastewater disposal. Septic systems meeting Title V remove harmful pathogens; however will do little to remove nitrogen, phosphates, medications and chemicals. After passing through the treatment system, wastewater is absorbed into the ground and relies on the natural filtering ability of the soils to further clean itself.
Septic systems require regular maintenance. They need to be pumped and inspected every three to five years, depending on usage.
Additional steps to prolong the life of the septic system & protect groundwater:
Over the last 30 years, the number of homes on Great Herring Pond has increased by 50%. Proper septic system care is more important than ever.