A septic system is not designed to entirely remove solids from your wastewater. Instead, solids will float to the top of the water where bacteria will break them down. Whatever the bacteria doesn't break down will settle to the bottom of the tank as sludge. Gradually this sludge will build up until the tank has to be pumped to avoid overflow of sludge into your drainage lines or a backup of sewage into your house. While septic tank service and pumping are necessary, there are steps you can take to improve the function of your system.
Cleaning your hands with an antibacterial soap seems like a good idea, but what happens when that antibacterial agents in the soap reach your septic tank? It kills the bacteria that your tank requires to function properly. You should also be careful with household chemicals. Chlorine, oxidizing cleaners, vinegar, and other harsh chemicals can have a negative impact on your septic system. Make sure you only only cleaners that won't harm your wastewater system go down your drain.
Properly Dispose of Oils and Grease
You might want to drain a greasy pan right into your sink, but once the grease from the pan reaches your septic system, it can clog the inner workings of the system. Thus, you should not flush oils, grease, or paints down the drain.
Don't Flush Solids
The only solid you should ever flush besides human waste is toilet paper. You might think that baby wipes are okay, but they tend to take a long time to decompose and thus can take up space in your tank, which may cause malfunctions. Some homeowners flush medications down the drain. As with antibacterial soap, flushing medications meant to kill bacteria will kill the bacteria in your system. Thus, stick to the toilet-paper-only rule.
If you just realized that you flushed medications or harmful chemicals down the drain, you should try to counteract the damage you have done to your system. You can buy additives that are designed to promote bacteria growth in your system, and flushing one of these after you have inadvertently hurt your system will help to get it back on track.
Remember that the above suggestions aren't meant to eliminate the need to pump your tank; instead, they are meant to make sure that your system is working properly between pumpings. Wise homeowners will take steps to ensure that their system is working properly in order to avoid the cost of pumping out drainage lines or replacing your system.Share