How did Philyaw Excavating begin?

In 1974, three Philyaw brothers and their father purchased a backhoe, utility tractor, two trucks and an equipment trailer.


How full is my septic tank?

It is full. Properly-functioning septic tanks are holding tanks, and remain full all the time.


How long does it take for my tank to fill?

Under normal usage, about three to five days.


How do I know if my tank needs to be pumped?

Sludge settles to the tank bottom and scum floats on the liquid in the tank. It is time to pump the tank when either or both thicken.


Tank pumping is the best preventative maintenance for your septic system and helps keep sludge out of the system thereby prolonging its life.

Why do I need to pump my tank?


Depending on usage and the tank’s size, anywhere from one to eight years.

How often should I pump my tank?


Generally, no. Some additives are actually harmful. Additives can keep sludge in suspension, which will flow into the secondary portion of your system, thereby shortening its life. Generally, starters are not necessary. There are more than enough good bacteria in ordinary domestic waste water for a septic tank to start and function properly.

Should I use additives in my tank, such as yeast, bacteria,
starters, etc.?


Subsurface seepage field, seepage bed, sand filter bed, and chamber system are the most common types. They use your soil to dispose of the waste water (effluent) exiting the tank.

What is the secondary portion of a system?


Chlorine bleach, chlorine toilet bowl cleaners, paints, solvents, medicines, disposable diapers, sanitary products, cigarette butts, coffee grounds, also clear water discharges from sump pumps, foundation drains, and storm drains are some of the items that should not enter a septic system.

Is there anything I should not put in my system?


Do not automatically assume the system is bad. Often a simple obstruction or broken pipe is to blame. Contact Philyaw Excavating for an evaluation.

I am having trouble with my septic system. What should I do?


Many items factor into the cost of a septic system. Site conditions, soil conditions, and usage are the three main determining factors of cost, and every situation is different. Contact Philyaw Excavating for an evaluation.

How much does a septic system cost?


Many variables come into play. Most health departments say 20 to 25 years is average, but many systems remain strong after 40 years, and a few have been found to be working fine after 50 years.

How long does a septic system last?


Bureau, Knox, Marshall, Mason, Peoria, Putnam, Stark, Tazewell, and Woodford Counties.

What area does Philyaw Excavating serve?