Can I Get Sick From My Septic Tank?
Updated: Feb 11
The short answer is YES, it is possible to get sick from the fumes emitted from a tank or leach field that needs maintenance or repair. You can also become sick with contact of wastewater.
WHAT CAN YOU GET?
If your system is failing it can send mold spores back into your home, which may cause issues for those with asthma or mold allergies.
Septic fumes can carry airborne bacteria that can cause sinus infection and other respiratory problems. Fumes are made of a mixture of gases: ammonia, hydrogen sulfide, methane & carbon dioxide. At low levels, they can stink but may not be toxic, but chronic exposure or exposure to higher levels of the gas can cause symptoms of sewer gas poisoning.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?
nausea or vomiting
poor memory or concentration
More severe symptoms will be present if you have had prolonged exposure or higher levels of exposure:
loss of smell
mouth, throat, lung irritation
eye irritations/pink eye
and more sever symptoms can include seizure, coma, or even death.
Diseases caused by sewage or sewage contaminated water are listed below. For more info on them, go to the CDC website.
methaemoglobinaemia (see EPA.gov for more info)
There has been no evidence found at this time that a person can get COVID from wastewater.