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Fanning Excavating, Inc.
2930 N Harmony Townhall Rd.
Janesville, WI 53546
(608) 754-6100
Fanning Excavating, Inc.
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It's a jungle out there.... Can you find the septic lids in these pictures? This is why it is important to know where your septic lids are located on your property! Make sure you inform us where your septic lids are located when calling us for an inspection, a pumping or repair.

Ask the Experts


What do you do with the waste that you pump from my septic system?

August 20, 2014
     We take it to the Janesville Treatment Plant or incorporate the waste into our many fields for an eco-friendly breakdown.
Check out our YouTube videos. You can link to them on our home page! Very educational.


What exactly can I flush down my toilet if I have a septic system?

July 8, 2014
The only thing that you should be flushing down your toilets is human waste and toilet paper. Everything else like sanitary items, baby/cleansing wipes, cotton balls, garbage, etc. needs to go in your trash bin. These items can plug your septic lines and filter. These items also do not break down well in your system.


When do I know if my septic tank needs to be emptied? I looked at it this weekend and it is full.

April 9, 2013
     Thanks for the question.  We get this question a lot when we service tanks.  For those new to the POWTS (Private On Site Wastewater Treatment System), the septic tank is always full, with the exception being the few days it takes to fill after it has been serviced.  The proper level of the waste in the tank is when the liquid level is at the flow line of the outlet pipe.  This generally is about 10” to 12” below the cover of the actual tank.  If it is above the outlet pipe, this tells you there is a problem in the outlet pipe or the filter may be plugged.  Either way, you will want us to take a look at it to determine what should be done to correct this problem so that it doesn’t back up into your home.  If it below the outlet pipe flow line, there may be a leak in your septic tank.  This, too, should be evaluated as a leaky tank could present problems with groundwater or other environmental issues.

If the liquid level is where it belongs, then the next question is "how do I know it needs to be serviced?  It looks like it’s all water to me."  The way we do it here at Fanning Excavating is through a sludge judge.  If the scum and sludge in a septic tank add up to more than 1/3 the liquid capacity of the septic tank, then the tank needs servicing.  So if you had a tank with a 45” liquid capacity, and the tank had more than 15” in scum and sludge in the test, then the tank would need to be serviced.  Most counties go with the 3 year maintenance schedule and in most cases; this is a good rule of thumb.  However, some homes need more frequent servicing because of factors such as number of people in the house, water usage, what is being disposed in the wastewater, and even prescription drug usage. And some homes can go even longer than the 3 years required by the county.  We have some homes with one person living in them that just don’t need servicing.  We have a couple of homes that are into their 6-7 year of not having them pumped, and they are nowhere near the 1/3 capacity. They just don’t create enough waste to warrant the servicing need. 

Hope this answers your question.  If we have confused you more with this explanation, we apologize. Just give us a call and we can connect you to Roger to further discuss this.


I have my county form due but the roads are posted. Will the county fine me if it's not serviced by it's due date? This is a great service you have for questions we may have. Thanks so much for the good work your company does.

March 22, 2013
     Thanks for the question. First off, roads are posted every spring. The townships post the roads to keep the heavy trucks off of them until the ground is stable after the frost is gone. This creates quite a problem for the septic service companies in our area. The county sends out three reminders before they levy any fines against the homeowner. The green form is the first reminder, the second reminder is the yellow form, and the third reminder is red. Picture a stoplight, that's how we remember it. So when you get your green form, call us and let us know when the service is due to be performed. If it is not possible for us to get it done before the due date, either you or our company could call the county and let them know the situation as to why it cannot be performed. This will satisfy the county requirements until we are able to get the service perform
ed. We truly appreciate your patience to get your tank(s) serviced in the early spring. There is a big backlog every year at this time.

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