Dispose of solids appropriately. The only things that should be flushed down the toilet are wastewater and toilet paper. Do not put cigarette butts, paper towels, sanitary tampons, condoms, disposable diapers, anything plastic or similar non-biodegradables into a septic tank system.
- What Can I Flush To Help My Septic Tank? Paper towels, newspapers, writing paper, rags, disposable diapers, and cat litter should be flushed into the septic tank. When pumping a septic tank, wash down its sides.
What Cannot be flushed down a septic tank?
Don’t Put Anything Non-Biodegradable in Your Septic System Disposable diapers. Paper towels. Plastics. Sanitary napkins or tampons.
What products Cannot be used with a septic tank?
But to make it even clearer, here are the top ten household products to avoid when you have a septic tank.
- Fabric softeners.
- Latex products.
- Antibacterial soap.
- Drain cleaners.
- Dishwasher and laundry detergent.
What can you flush down a septic tank with?
The best thing to do for your septic system is to be sure not to flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper, preferably single-ply toilet paper. Even if items are marked as “septic safe,” do not flush them. For example, some baby wipes and cat litter may be labeled this way.
Can you flush a fish into a septic tank?
Don’t Flush Dead Fish But if you have a septic system, you should not. The fish can introduce different bacteria to your tank, possibly harming the good bacteria in there. Discard the fish in the trash to dispose of it. The Items you flush can directly impact your septic system.
Does hair break down in a septic tank?
Why Hair is a Such a Problem It’s composed of tough strands of proteins similar to those in your fingernails, and it’s not easily broken down by bacteria. Even if it doesn’t for years in your septic tank, it’ll almost certainly last for longer than the 24-48 hours that it sits in your septic tank.
Can you pour milk into septic tank?
If not the trash. A man who has a septic tank service told us to buy a gallon of whole milk and let it go bad a few days and flush it into the septic tank to feed the bacteria. He said to do this about once a month.
What will ruin a septic system?
Any paper products like tissues, paper towels, tampons, or sanitary products, even some heavier toilet paper, will clog your system if you flush enough of it. Wet wipes are another product that you should never flush into a septic system.
Can I use bleach if I have a septic tank?
You might consider bleach to be a great cleaner to use for your septic system. Unfortunately, that mindset is a dangerous one to have because it’s usually recommended to avoid using bleach in your septic system. The chemicals within bleach can kill the bacteria that your septic tank relies on.
How do I clean my septic tank naturally?
You can mix about a 1/4 cup of baking soda with 1/2 cup of vinegar and 2 tablespoons lemon to make your own natural cleaning agent. The baking soda will fizz up to help get the dirt and grime in your tub and drains. It’s a great cleaner and your septic system will thank you!
How do you dissolve sludge in a septic tank?
How to Reduce Sludge in a Septic Tank Without Pumping
- Install an aeration system with diffused air in your septic tank.
- Break up any compacted sludge.
- Add a bio-activator or microbe blend.
- Maintain the aeration system.
- Add additional Microbes as required.
Can I flush a tampon into a septic tank?
Septic systems are not designed for dealing with large amounts of sanitary waste, so it’s important that you do not flush tampons down the toilet. But, even if you are part of a sewer system, flushing your tampons is still not a good idea. Tampons don’t really break down.
Can Kleenex go into a septic tank?
Dryer sheets, facial tissues and paper towels do not break down easily in septic systems. Other commonly flushed items which cause clogs and damage include hair clippings, dirt and coffee grounds.
Will fish survive if you flush them down the toilet?
As experts were quick to point out following the movie’s release, flushed fish typically die long before they reach the ocean, going into shock upon immersion in the toilet’s cold water, succumbing to the noxious chemicals found in the sewage system, or—if they make it this far—finding themselves eliminated at a water
How many condoms does it take to clog a septic tank?
That’s a long time for one condom to take up space in your tank. The more condoms that are flushed down the drains, the more they’ll build up in the septic tank, and the greater the chance that they’ll cause the tank to fail. When a septic tank fails, it could burst underground, causing toxic leaks.
Is Kirkland toilet paper septic safe?
And the evidence points at Costco toilet paper being just as safe as any other brand of the product, as long as you treat your septic system right.
Things You Should Never Put in a Septic Tank
- What is the significance of maintaining a healthy septic tank
- And What Goes Into Your Septic Tank
- Septic Tank Do’s and Don’ts
- How Do Things Get Into Your Septic Tank
- What Cleaning Products Can Be Used in the Home That Are Septic Safe
- How to Dispose of Garbage for a Healthy Septic Tank
- How to Use the Toilet for a Healthy Septic Tank
- How to Tell If Your Septic Tank Is Full
- The Importance of Keeping Your Septic System in Good Working Order
If your septic system is properly maintained, it should provide you with no problems; nevertheless, you must be extremely cautious about what you put down your drains. Knowing what should and should not be flushed down your septic tank will help you avoid costly septic tank problems in the future. This is also true for your waste disposal system. To provide an example, a frequently asked topic about the waste disposal is whether coffee grounds are harmful to septic systems or not. Is it harmful to a septic system to use coffee grounds?
In general, the most often asked questions by homeowners are: What should I put in my septic tank and what should I not put in my septic tank?
Why Is It Important to Maintain a Healthy Septic Tank?
Your septic system is an extremely important component of your property. While it frequently goes unseen, it is operating around the clock to dispose of the garbage generated by your household. The fact that many homeowners do not notice their septic tank on a regular basis leads to a high rate of failure or forgetting to schedule basic septic tank repair. The failure to maintain your septic system can result in a variety of problems, including:
- Leach fields and septic tanks that are overflowing or oozing
- A disagreeable sewage odor
- Overflowing toilets leading in the accumulation of harmful waste in your home
Maintenance of your septic tank on a regular basis is necessary for a variety of reasons, including the following:
1. Property Value
When it comes time to sell your land and house, a septic tank inspection may reveal problems that indicate your system hasn’t been properly maintained for a long period of time. This might result in you losing out on a possible sale.
2. Good Health
Proper septic tank maintenance can result in serious health consequences if wastewater that has not been correctly treated is allowed to leak into your well, yard, and nearby surface water. If your septic tank has been ignored for an extended period of time, backwash may run into your home, introducing bacteria into your home.
3. Protects the Environment
On a daily basis, wastewater is disseminated below the surface of the earth in an amount of over 4 billion gallons. Groundwater contamination can occur as a result of untreated or inadequately treated domestic wastewater, and this can be harmful to the ecosystem. A faulty septic system may cause the release of viruses, bacteria, and hazardous chemicals into local waterways, as well as into the ground, streams, lakes, and rivers, among other places, causing devastation to local ecosystems and the death of species.
4. Financial Savings
Routine cleanings of your septic tank are less expensive than replacing it. You may have your tank inspected by a service professional to verify that it has been properly cleaned and to check for indicators of structural deterioration such as leaks, cracks, and other issues. Make Contact With A Septic Expert
How Do Things Get Into Your Septic Tank?
Septic systems remove floatable debris such as fats and oils from solids and digest organic stuff in the wastewater they process. In a soil-based system, the liquid waste from your septic tank is discharged into different perforated pipes that are buried in chambers, a leach field, or other particular components that are designed to gently release the effluent into the ground.
The following are examples of how objects can get into your septic tank:
- Waste such as diapers, cigarette butts, and coffee grounds that degrade slowly or are not entirely flushed down drains
- Lint from synthetic fibers is emitted by washing machines. There are no bacteria in the drain and tank septic field to break it down
- Therefore, it is not broken down. When garbage disposers are used often, they might discharge an excessive amount of solid waste into your septic system. It is possible for shrubs and tree roots to obstruct and cause harm to a drain field
Septic Tank Do’s and Don’ts
What you put in your septic tank will have a significant impact on its capacity to perform its function. Coffee grounds, for example, are not compatible with septic systems. It is possible to save yourself a lot of headaches and money by educating everyone in your home about what is and isn’t acceptable for your septic tank. You can also extend the life of your septic system and protect the health of your property, family, and the environment by educating everyone in your home.
Things You Should Never Put In Your Septic Tank
You should never put the following items in your septic tank, and you should avoid the following items in your septic tank as well.
1. Do Enlarge Your Septic System If Needed
In the event that you intend on adding an addition to your house that will increase the floor area of your home by more than 15%, increase the number of plumbing fixtures, or increase the number of bedrooms, you may need to consider expanding your septic system to accommodate the increase in space.
2. Don’t Put Hazardous Waste Into the System
Do not, under any circumstances, introduce harmful chemicals into the system. Never dump paint, paint thinners, gasoline, or motor oil down the toilet or into the septic tank. A septic tank receives what is known as the “kiss of death.”
3. Do Limit the Number of Solids
A large amount of solids flushed down the toilet will cause your septic tank to fill up extremely quickly. You should not flush the following objects down the toilet:
- Cat litter, coffee grounds, cigarette butts, dental floss, disposable diapers, earplugs, sanitary napkins or tampons are all acceptable substitutes for these items.
If you have a septic tank, you should never dump coffee grinds down the toilet. It is recommended that you avoid introducing materials into the system that do not degrade fast as a general rule.
4. Don’t Put Anything Non-Biodegradable in Your Septic System
Don’t put materials into your septic tank system that aren’t biodegradable, such as the following:
- However, cigarette butts, disposable diapers, paper towels, plastics, sanitary napkins or tampons are prohibited.
5. Do Install an Effluent Filter
Make certain that an effluent filter is installed on your septic tank. This will assist to reduce the amount of particles that exit the tank and will extend the life of your system.
6. Don’t Put Grease or Fat Into the System
Perhaps to your surprise, grease and oil can cause a septic system to fail by clogging up the drain field and contaminating the soil around it, causing it to fail. Soil that has been polluted will be unable to absorb and assimilate liquids from your system. If you have major problems with your septic tank system, you may be forced to replace it.
7. Do Run Full Dishwasher and Washing Machine Loads
Dishwashers and washing machines should only be used when they are completely loaded. Alternatively, select the appropriate load size for your washing machine. It is inefficient to wash tiny loads of clothing with huge amounts of water since it wastes both electricity and water.
8. Don’t Put Any Chemicals Into Your System
Don’t flush chemicals down the toilet, such as the following:
- Gasoline, insect or weed killers, oil, photographic chemicals, paint thinners, solvents, and other compounds
These can contaminate your septic tank, posing a hazard to the water supply for your entire area. Make an Appointment Today
What Household Cleaning Products Are Septic Safe
Another important piece of septic tank advice is to be cautious when selecting the cleansers and chemicals that you use around your house or business. Your septic tank’s ability to operate correctly is dependent on the presence of ‘friendly’ bacteria. The problem is that many disinfectants, bleaches, and household cleansers are especially formulated to kill bacteria. Use organic and biodegradable home items wherever feasible to reduce the likelihood of septic tank issues. If you use drain cleaners, never let them enter the system since even a tiny amount of these harsh chemicals may wreak havoc on the microorganisms in the system and create septic tank issues.
There are a variety of opinions on this subject.
Many people believe that running Epsom salt through their septic tanks will help to break down waste.
To observe the acidic advantages of Epsom salt, you’d have to flush a significant amount of it into your tank. The following are examples of household cleaning solutions that are safe for septic systems:
1. Safest Bathroom and Toilet Cleaners
Your bathroom may retain a lot of germs, so it’s important to clean it on a regular basis. However, you will require septic-safe cleansers such as:
- Green Works 99 percent naturally derived toilet bowl cleaner
- CLR Calcium, Lime, and Rust Remover
- CLR BathKitchen Foaming Action Cleaner
- CLR BathKitchen Foaming Action
It is not recommended to use crystal drain cleaners to unclog plumbing blockages in your toilet or sink since they might be hazardous to your septic system.
2. Safest Floor Cleaners
The following are examples of safe floor cleaners:
- BISSELL Advanced Professional SpotStain + Oxy
- ECOS PRO Neutral Floor Cleaner Concentrated 1:128
- BISSELL Pet Stain and Odor
- BISSELL Advanced Professional SpotStain + Oxy
3. Safest Dishwashing Detergents
Regardless of whether you’re using the dishwasher or cleaning your dishes by hand, the following are some safe options:
- A few examples include: Dropps dishwashing pods, Amway Home Dish Drops automatic dishwashing powder, Aldi Foaming Dish Soap, and more.
4. Safest Kitchen, All-Purpose and Glass Cleaners
These items are completely safe to use around your home:
- Cleaners from Amway include L.O.C. Multi-Purpose Cleaner, Green Works 98 percent Naturally-Derived GlassSurface Cleaner Spray, ECOS Glass + Surface Cleaner Vinegar, and ECOS Glass + Surface Cleaner Vinegar.
5. Safest Odor Removers
Here are several odor-killing options that are safe for septic systems:
- In addition to Fresh Wave Odor Removing Spray, ECOS Pet Kitty Litter Deodorizer, and Earth Friendly Products Everyday Stain and Odor Remover are also recommended.
Garbage Disposal Tips for a Healthy Septic Tank
Many people are unaware of this vital piece of septic tank knowledge, but you should avoid using your garbage disposal more than necessary. If you absolutely must have a trash disposal, choose for a top-of-the-line type that grinds waste finely, as this will aid in the decomposition of waste materials and the prevention of septic tank problems by reducing the amount of time waste takes to disintegrate. You may also set up a kitchen waste compost bin so that you don’t have to throw potentially hazardous products into your garbage disposal system.
1. Don’t Pour Coffee Grounds Down Your Drain
Are coffee grounds beneficial to your septic system? You might be wondering if this is true. or “Do coffee grinds in a septic tank pose a problem?” When composted in the ground, ground coffee beans ultimately break down, but they do not dissolve in the septic system, even when employing an enzyme-rich septic tank activator, as is the case with most other organic waste. Is it true that coffee grounds are detrimental for septic systems? The texture of coffee grinds is coarse. As a result of pouring these grounds down your garbage disposal, they will accumulate in your septic tank like gravel, and you will ultimately need to pump them out of the tank because they do not breakdown quickly.
This layer will need to be pumped out and hauled away by a professional.
Please do not dump coffee grounds down the sink drain once again.
2. Only Dispose of Rotted Soft or Unconsumed Perishables Into Your Garbage Disposal
Bananas, tomatoes, and oranges that are over a year old are OK. However, avoid using your trash disposal for anything that might cause sludge to build up along the inner walls of your sewage pipes or clog a drain.
3. Consider an Alternative to Your Garbage Disposal
Consider making a compost pile in your backyard out of your outdated vegetables as an alternative to throwing it away.
Rather from ending up in your septic tank or landfill, decomposing vegetables and fruits may nourish and feed the soil, accomplishing a more beneficial function than they would if they ended up in a landfill.
Toilet Tips for a Healthy Septic Tank
In addition to following the above-mentioned garage disposal recommendations, you should also consider the following toilet recommendations to keep your septic tank in the best possible condition.
- Decrease the number of times you flush the toilet. Using the toilet numerous times before flushing is recommended. Make use of toilet paper that is designed for use with a septic tank. When it comes to toilet paper, the type that breaks up easily when wet is the best choice. It is not recommended to use a disinfecting automated toilet bowl cleanser, such as those containing acid compounds or bleach. Using these products, you may destroy the bacteria in your septic tank that is important for a productive operating system with a gradual release, ongoing action. Tampons should not be flushed into the toilet. Tampons in a septic system is an issue that many individuals have and are perplexed by the answer to. This is due to the fact that there are now tampons available that are so-called bio-degradable and can be flushed down the toilet. Tampons, on the other hand, are among the items that should not be flushed down the toilet or into a septic tank. If you want to be on the safe side, never dump tampons down the toilet
- This is the greatest rule of thumb here.
How to Tell If Your Septic Tank Is Full
When properly maintained, your septic tank is an efficient means of disposing of the wastewater generated by your household. Septic systems must be pumped out on a regular basis in order to work effectively. Many people are unsure as to when this type of action is required in their situation. The following are some indications that it is time to pump your septic tank:
1. Pooling Water
If you notice huge pools of water near your septic system’s drain field, this might signal that the system has overflowed, especially if it hasn’t rained recently. When your tank reaches capacity, the solid waste in the tank might block the drain field of the field pipe system, causing liquid to rise to the surface. If you see this, your tank will need to be properly pumped out.
In addition to garbage, your septic tank collects gray water from sources such as the following: The odor-causing gasses that can emanate from your drains, toilets, drain field, and outside septic tank area can begin to emanate as the septic tank begins to fill up. If you begin to notice unusual scents outside or inside your house, it is possible that your septic tank is overflowing and has to be drained.
3. Sewage Backup
It is possible to have nasty sewage backup in your toilets, sinks, and bathtub if you have a clogged sewage tank. The sewage can overflow and flood your floors, rendering your home uninhabitable and hazardous if you allow the situation to continue to spiral out of control.
4. Slow Drains
If you discover that your home’s drains and toilet flushes are still slow after you’ve tried to clear them, it’s possible that you have a clogged septic system.
5. Gurgling Water
Another symptom that your septic tank is overflowing is gurgling sounds pipes coming from your drains or toilet bowl. This is something that you would definitely want an expert to come in and check.
6. Lush Lawn
If your grass looks unusually lush or green, especially near the drainage field, it might be an indication that you have a clogged septic tank that needs to be drained.
7. Trouble Flushing
An further sign that your septic tank needs to be cleaned is if you’re experiencing difficulties flushing your toilet or if the water you’re trying to flush is not being absorbed by the toilet.
Maintaining a Healthy Septic System Is Important
The plumbing and septic systems in your house play an important part in the overall comfort of your home. It is critical that you pay some consideration to these issues and that your septic tank is kept in good working order. The proper upkeep of your septic tank is essential if you want the plumbing in your house to function properly. Unattended septic systems may result in serious obstructions, backups, and even wastewater pouring into the surrounding area. You’ll want to engage in regular septic system maintenance in order to avoid these kinds of problems.
Contact Mr. Rooter of Syracuse, N.Y., Your Septic System Professionals
Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Syracuse, New York, is comprised of a group of qualified specialists that are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to attend to your septic tank problems. Septic tanks are something that our skilled team at Mr. Rooter has a lot of experience with. Once we’ve been in and completed the cleaning, maintenance, or repairs to your septic system, we’ll provide you instructions on how to keep up with the best upkeep of your system when we’re not there to help you. It is critical to understand the principles of your home’s septic tank and how it operates in order to recognize problems as they occur.
In addition to video drainage inspections, we have sophisticated diagnostic equipment that allow us to discover and correct issues before they become expensive repairs. Please contact us right away if you require assistance with your septic tank issues. Request an Estimate for the Job
Avoid flushing these if you have a septic tank
The majority of homeowners believe that their toilet may be used as a garbage disposal, which is simply not true. In order to avoid this, people end up flushing a wide variety of items down the toilets. Some of the items that are flushed down the toilet are truly harmless mistakes made by homeowners who believe that this is the proper method to dispose of the products, while in other situations, it is just a don’t care attitude on the part of the homeowner. Whatever the situation may be, flushing some of these items down the toilet might cause a septic system to collapse, which could result in a significant financial loss.
Flushing Cigarette butts
Putting cigarette butts in the trash bin is something that most smokers are frightened of doing since it might spark a fire. So, they resort to using the toilet, believing that the water contained within the toilet bowl would extinguish the cigarette. While it appears to be a noble endeavor, it actually produces more harm than good. For starters, cigarette butts are constructed of tightly woven plasticized cellulose acetate, which is a nonbiodegradable substance that is used to make cigarettes.
Furthermore, cigarettes frequently include hundreds of chemicals, some of which contain heavy metals such as cadmium, which are poisonous to bacteria in the septic tank, and others which do not.
There is a widespread fallacy that condoms are biodegradable and, as a result, that flushing them down the toilet is completely safe. However, even latex condoms are not constructed entirely of latex rubber, as is commonly believed. Synthetic materials, like as polyurethane, are frequently used in an attempt to make them stronger and more flexible. Condoms are nonbiodegradable because of the synthetic components that have been put to them. You may ultimately block the septic system’s pipes if you keep flushing them down the toilet for an extended period of time.
Flushing expired meds
Pharmaceuticals are composed of extremely durable molecules, and as a result, they may easily withstand the liquifying process in the septic tank and end up poisoning the groundwater supply. Furthermore, outdated medications are extremely poisonous and can cause the microorganisms in the septic tank to go extinct. Antibiotics, for example, have been developed specifically to combat and kill germs, and they will do just that in the septic tank. This is why medications that are no longer needed or expired should not be flushed down the toilet.
A single fundamental concept underlies the action of antibacterial products such as handwashes, kitchen cleansers, and toilet soaps – the destruction of germs. The presence of these compounds in the septic tank is undesirable, because microorganisms in the tank are responsible for organic waste digestion.
As a result, it is recommended that you refrain from using any antibacterial products at all. You may use conventional soaps instead, or you can make your own safe DIY products out of things like lemon juice.
Wet wipes/ face wipes
Wet wipes are becoming increasingly popular, however they are also responsible for blocking sewage systems, resulting in backups of water. Some well-known manufacturers advertise their wet wipes as flushable, but you should avoid flushing them regardless of the labeling. According to research, wet wipes are responsible for up to 93 percent of the debris that causes sewage clogs. Make sure to throw away your wet wipes to prevent becoming a part of this unfortunate statistic.
Sanitary pads and tampons do not decompose in the environment. When you flush them down the toilet, you run the danger of blocking the pipes. Furthermore, because bacteria are unable to degrade them, they will collect in the tank and contribute to the formation of sludge accumulation. This can ultimately lead your tank to fill up more quickly than it should, resulting in you having to book a pumping appointment earlier than you had originally anticipated.
Paint is made up of several components, including a pigment, a binder, a solvent, and additives. Although there is a widespread belief that water-based paint is suitable for septic tanks, this is not the case. The sole difference between water-based and oil-based paint is the solvent that is used to create it. Oil-based paints contain turpentine as a solvent, whereas water-based paints contain water as a solvent. All of the other components, on the other hand, remain the same, and so all paints are still hazardous.
It is recommended that you avoid flushing cat litter since it can cause serious damage to your septic system. Cat litter adds unwanted solid waste to the tank, which leads to the formation of sludge in the tank. Moreover, it has the potential to jam up pipes in the system, leading to a backup of sewage. Toxoplasma parasites are introduced into the septic tank by cat litter as well as other sources. Because of the parasite’s ability to thrive in septic tanks, it will ultimately pollute drinking water.
This parasite has been shown to cause brain damage and even death in some cases, according to the literature.
Due to the small size of dental floss, you could be tempted to simply flush it down the toilet. However, you should not. Dental floss is commonly constructed of nylon or Teflon, and neither of these materials degrades naturally over time. In addition to adding to sludge buildup, dental floss can become entangled in hair, toilet paper, and other debris, causing blockages in the pipes.
Despite the fact that paper towels appear to be tissue paper to the untrained eye, they are not designed to deteriorate in water. Paper towels are created from hardwood pulp and are more absorbent than they are biodegradable, which is why they are used to dry hands and food items rather than being composted or recycled.
Therefore, flushing them down the toilet is not a good idea since they will just settle at the bottom of your toilet tank and contribute to the development of sludge and odors.
Band-Aids, toys, and any other plastic items should not be flushed down the toilet, according to EPA guidelines. Considering that certain plastics can disintegrate for up to 1,000 years, flushing them down the toilet is not a good idea. Beyond the possibility of a blockage, plastics will contribute to the building of sludge in the septic tank, increasing the likelihood of the tank becoming overflowing sooner than usual.
Do not flush Band-Aids, toys, or any other plastic items down the toilet since they might cause a blockage. Considering that certain plastics can disintegrate over a 1,000 years, flushing them down the toilet is not a good idea. Beyond the possibility of a blockage, plastics will contribute to the building of sludge in the septic tank, increasing the likelihood of the tank becoming overflowing sooner than normal.
When pumping septic tanks, septic tank pumping firms come upon all kinds of bizarre and unbelievable things. If you want your tank to last you for decades without breaking down, you must be careful about the goods you flush down the toilet. As a general rule, only flush toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. Any other type of waste should be disposed of in the garbage. Always remember that it is better to be cautious than to be sorry when it comes to septic systems.
How to Care for Your Septic System
Septic system maintenance is neither difficult or expensive, and it does not have to be done frequently. The maintenance of a vehicle is comprised of four major components:
- Inspect and pump your drainfield on a regular basis
- Conserve water
- Dispose of waste properly
- And keep your drainfield in good condition.
Inspect and Pump Frequently
Inspection of the ordinary residential septic system should be performed by a septic service specialist at least once every three years. Household septic tanks are normally pumped every three to five years, depending on how often they are used. Alternative systems that use electrical float switches, pumps, or mechanical components should be examined more frequently, typically once a year, to ensure that they are in proper working order. Because alternative systems contain mechanical components, it is essential to have a service contract.
- The size of the household
- The total amount of wastewater produced
- The amount of solids present in wastewater
- The size of the septic tank
Service provider coming? Here is what you need to know.
When you contact a septic service provider, he or she will inspect your septic tank for leaks as well as the scum and sludge layers that have built up over time. Maintain detailed records of any maintenance work conducted on your septic system. Because of the T-shaped outlet on the side of your tank, sludge and scum will not be able to escape from the tank and travel to the drainfield region. A pumping is required when the bottom of the scum layer or the top of the sludge layer is within six inches of the bottom of the outlet, or if the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the bottom of the outlet.
In the service report for your system, the service provider should mention the completion of repairs as well as the condition of the tank.
If additional repairs are recommended, contact a repair professional as soon as possible. An online septic finder from the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association (NOWRA) makes it simple to identify service specialists in your region.
Use Water Efficiently
In a normal single-family house, the average indoor water consumption is about 70 gallons per person, per day, on average. A single leaking or running toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons of water each day, depending on the situation. The septic system is responsible for disposing of all of the water that a residence sends down its pipes. The more water that is conserved in a household, the less water that enters the sewage system. A septic system that is operated efficiently will operate more efficiently and will have a lower chance of failure.
- Toilets with a high level of efficiency. The usage of toilets accounts for 25 to 30% of total home water use. Many older homes have toilets with reservoirs that hold 3.5 to 5 gallons of water, but contemporary, high-efficiency toilets consume 1.6 gallons or less of water for each flush. Changing out your old toilets for high-efficiency versions is a simple approach to lessen the amount of household water that gets into your septic system. Aerators for faucets and high-efficiency showerheads are also available. Reduce water use and the volume of water entering your septic system by using faucet aerators, high-efficiency showerheads, and shower flow restriction devices. Machines for washing clothes. Water and energy are wasted when little loads of laundry are washed on the large-load cycle of your washing machine. By selecting the appropriate load size, you may limit the amount of water wasted. If you are unable to specify a load size, only complete loads of washing should be performed. Washing machine use should be spread throughout the week if at all possible. Doing all of your household laundry in one day may appear to be a time-saving strategy
- Nevertheless, it can cause damage to your septic system by denying your septic tank adequate time to handle waste and may even cause your drainfield to overflow. Machines that have earned theENERGY STARlabel consume 35 percent less energy and 50 percent less water than ordinary ones, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Other Energy Star appliances can save you a lot of money on your energy and water bills.
Properly Dispose of Waste
Everything that goes down your drains, whether it’s flushed down the toilet, ground up in the trash disposal, or poured down the sink, shower, or bath, ends up in your septic system, which is where it belongs. What you flush down the toilet has an impact on how effectively your septic system functions.
Toilets aren’t trash cans!
Your septic system is not a garbage disposal system. A simple rule of thumb is to never flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper down the toilet. Never flush a toilet:
- Cooking grease or oil
- Wipes that are not flushable, such as baby wipes or other wet wipes
- Photographic solutions
- Feminine hygiene items Condoms
- Medical supplies such as dental floss and disposable diapers, cigarette butts and coffee grounds, cat litter and paper towels, pharmaceuticals, and household chemicals such as gasoline and oil, insecticides, antifreeze, and paint or paint thinners
Toilet Paper Needs to Be Flushed! Check out this video, which demonstrates why the only item you should flush down your toilet are toilet paper rolls.
Think at the sink!
Your septic system is made up of a collection of living organisms that digest and treat the waste generated by your household. Pouring pollutants down your drain can kill these organisms and cause damage to your septic system as well as other things. Whether you’re at the kitchen sink, the bathtub, or the utility sink, remember the following:
- If you have a clogged drain, avoid using chemical drain openers. To prevent this from happening, use hot water or a drain snake
- Never dump cooking oil or grease down the sink or toilet. It is never a good idea to flush oil-based paints, solvents, or huge quantities of harmful cleansers down the toilet. Even latex paint waste should be kept to a bare minimum. Disposal of rubbish should be avoided or limited to a minimum. Fats, grease, and particles will be considerably reduced in your septic tank, reducing the likelihood of your drainfield being clogged.
Own a recreational vehicle (RV), boat or mobile home?
If you have ever spent any time in an RV or boat, you are undoubtedly familiar with the issue of aromas emanating from sewage holding tanks.
- The National Small Flows Clearinghouse’s Septic System Care hotline, which may be reached toll-free at 800-624-8301, has a factsheet on safe wastewater disposal for RV, boat, and mobile home owners and operators.
Maintain Your Drainfield
It is critical that you maintain the integrity of your drainfield, which is a component of your septic system that filters impurities from the liquid that emerges from your septic tank once it has been installed. Here are some things you should do to keep it in good condition:
- Parking: Do not park or drive on your drainfield at any time. Plan your tree plantings so that their roots do not grow into your drainfield or septic system. An experienced septic service provider can recommend the appropriate distance for your septic tank and surrounding landscaping, based on your specific situation. Locating Your Drainfield: Keep any roof drains, sump pumps, and other rainfall drainage systems away from the drainfield area. Excess water causes the wastewater treatment process to slow down or halt completely.
7 Things You Should Never Flush If You Have a Septic System
Because something fits down your drain, is cut up by your trash disposal, or vanishes down your toilet when you flush it does not always imply that it belongs there. A septic system is extremely important to consider in this situation. If you are careless with the information you put through to your tank, it might come back to bother you later on. In the Phoenix area, Audrey Monell, president of Forrest Anderson Plumbing and Air Conditioning, says, “One of the most common mistakes homeowners make is putting things into their septic system that can cause clogs, damage pipes, and change the balance of the good bacteria that is needed to keep the system running smoothly.” She also happens to be the owner of a septic tank.
1. Nonbiodegradable items
One of the most crucial things to avoid putting into a septic system is the use of household chemicals. Anything that is not biodegradable should be avoided. Among the items included are anything from cigarette butts to feminine hygiene products and disposable diapers, according to Monell. According to the experts, just because something may be flushed down the toilet does not imply it should. There is no easy way to divide down these items. For example, throwaway diapers alone take hundreds of years to decompose.
Replace your current items with biodegradable alternatives, or dump what you already have in the garbage. Reusable copies that you may maintain for a long period of time are another alternative that is even better for the environment.
Food waste will block your septic system and cause it to malfunction. (PhotographyFirm/iStock) There’s no difference between pouring vegan sausage and greens down your garbage disposal and throwing bacon grease and Funyuns down your garbage disposal. When you put any type of food into a septic tank, it might lead to a buildup in your pipes, according to Monell. (This is similar to how cholesterol accumulates in your arteries.) Even the smallest amount of coffee grinds might cause issues. Once these objects begin to degrade, they combine to produce a viscous substance known as sludge, which causes backups, according to Monell.
3. Drain cleaner
In addition to removing sticky hair and other unidentified junk that has clogged your shower or sink drain, the strong chemicals in drain cleaners can cause damage to your septic system in numerous ways, including causing it to fail. In the first place, they can create corrosion in your pipes and tank, according to Monell. They’ll also eliminate the “good” bacteria that’s necessary for decomposition of the waste that’s in your tank. It’s best to use natural products to clear up your drains, but be sure they are septic-safe before you start cleaning.
4. Too much water
As Monell argues, you may believe that a large amount of water would help to keep things flowing through your system, but in reality, you run the danger of your tank filling up too rapidly. As a result, your system will be unable to operate correctly. Wastewater that is drained from the tank and onto the drain field and surrounding land too rapidly may include far more sludge (read: human waste) and scum than it should. You’re probably already familiar with the standard water-saving recommendations, but we’ll go over them again: Preferably, shorten your showers, and avoid running your washer and dishwasher until they’re completely filled.
It is recommended that you get a toilet lock for your kid. (SusanneB/iStock) Almost any parent of a toddler is familiar with the phenomenon of toddlers becoming preoccupied with flushing stuff down the toilet—in this case, toys—as John Parry, owner of South Fork Septic in Southampton, New York, explains. As Parry explains, “this may be quite dangerous to your septic system since toys can become lodged in a pipe and obstruct the waste flow, causing everything to back up.” If you want to be extra cautious, a toilet seat lock can be a good idea.
6. Paper towels
According to Parry, “even though these objects appear to be flushable, they do not decompose in the septic system.” Upon entering your tank, they attach to the concrete and make it extremely difficult for the system to function correctly.
Furthermore, if a problem is discovered, it is difficult for the septic business to pump out the system. According to Parry, soggy residues of paper towels might cause the pump to clog, resulting in expensive repairs.
7. Paint or paint thinner
“These items may appear to be harmless because they are liquid, but they do not properly decompose in a septic system,” Parry explains. And much like drain cleaner, “they’ll kill any good bacteria in the system, let alone can leak into waterways.” Over half of the population of the United States relies on groundwater for drinking water, but it is easily contaminated by things like a few extra cans of paint or paint thinner or even a few drops of paint thinner. Make contact with a local non-profit organization such as Habit for Humanity, whose volunteers may be able to make use of any leftover paint.
If it’s too late
After all, no one is flawless. If you’ve already mistakenly flushed one of the items listed above, don’t be too concerned as long as it was a one-time occurrence. One errant paper towel or Hatchimals toy is unlikely to cause a complete breakdown of your septic system. However, if you have a history of dumping prohibited substances into your system, Parry recommends having it repaired in order to avoid a backup or overflow situation. “If these materials are allowed to remain in the tank for an extended period of time, they harden and become impossible to pump out.”
Taking Care Of Your Septic System: What Can You Flush?
The vast majority of us would agree that our moms taught us that bathroom discussion should be kept in the bathroom. We should, however, bring the issue into the light in order to protect septic systems, human health, wildlife welfare, and personal budgets. Many of us are baffled by the list of things that should not be flushed down toilets or into septic systems. To be quite honest, if flushing does not result in the need to reach for the plunger, we do not see the use in paying attention to such lists.
The issue develops when there are difficulties that are not easily or immediately visible.
It is possible that flushing some objects will raise the likelihood of septic system damage or failure, as well as the likelihood of polluting the environment.
WHY DOES IT MATTER?
It is imperative that we monitor what we flush for three primary reasons: keeping function, preserving microorganisms, and conserving nature. When solids, semi-solids, and liquids that would otherwise harm our septic systems are disposed of elsewhere, the operation of our septic systems is protected. A perfectly functioning system is an unseen blessing, but a system that is not properly functioning swiftly becomes a nightmare. Bacteria may be found in septic tanks, absorption beds, and soakaway beds, and they are responsible for digesting pathogens and decomposing waste.
The preservation of these beneficial bacteria is critical to the proper functioning of the system.
Chemicals and other pollutants that are discharged into the system end up in groundwater and other bodies of water in the surrounding area. These filthy waterways represent a hazard to nature as well as to the health of our children.
WHAT NOT TO FLUSH
Lists of things not to flush may be found all over the Internet. However, let us take a minute to consider the reasoning of not flushing a couple of these objects down the toilet. Perhaps, as a result, we will halt and think twice before flushing the next time.
A toilet will become clogged or a sewer line will clog if you use baby wipes or any other disposable personal hygiene wipes. This will cause difficulties anywhere along the system, including pump damage or burnout. Be on the lookout! Flushing these goods down the toilet poses an expensive danger, even if the package label specifies that it is “Biodegradable” or “Safe for Septic Systems.” As a matter of fact, disposable wipes cause such extensive damage to systems that “.a characterization opposed by wastewater officials and litigants who have filed class-action lawsuits against wipes makers for upending their infrastructure” (Flegenheimer, 2015; Flegenheimer, 2015).
- The following elements are stated in a more subdued manner: Tampons and other feminine products of any type, including condoms, should be disposed of in the trash rather than flushed.
- These things do not decompose in the septic system and so constitute a clogging hazard to it.
- This is also true with clumping litter, as previously stated.
- Cigarette butts include filters that cause septic pumps to clog and eventually fail.
- Hair clippings, grime, and coffee grounds are among the other materials that are frequently flushed down the toilet and create blockages and damage.
- Toys and training pants are the nemesis of the plumbing industry, causing extensive and expensive damage.
- These compounds damage the inside components of sewage grinder pumps.
- In addition, explosive or combustible substances or materials should not be used in a septic system for safety reasons.
- Prescription and nonprescription drugs that are flushed down the toilet can pollute water sources and cause illness.
- and groundwater, potentially including drinking water.
Furthermore, the influence on animal life may be undiscovered until populations have declined to the point where they are no longer able to recover. It is possible that flushing drugs and some personal care items can deteriorate the health and hygiene that they were intended to enhance.
Let’s be clear about something. If you conduct a simple search on the Internet, you will find list after list of goods that should not be flushed. The view may be extremely overpowering, and it might even be a bit frightening at times. The only list that has to be remembered is the one that contains just items that are safe to flush. Waste and toilet paper are included in this category. All other items should be disposed of in other ways. Being cautious about what goes down the toilet has a positive impact on the safety of the water supply and, consequently, the safety of human and animal life.
What belongs in the toilet should remain in the toilet, while the remainder can be disposed of in the garbage.
Things you should never flush into a septic tank
Septic tanks collect all of the waste water generated by the toilets, sinks, and showers on your home. As a result, we probably don’t need to go into detail on what you should be flushing down the toilet. As a substitute, we thought we’d focus on some of the items you should never flush down the toilet into a septic tank, in order to avoid any septic tank issues in the future (or strange looks from the company that comes to empty it for you). Naturally, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of items that should never be flushed down the toilet or into a septic tank.
There are some things, however, that you may unintentionally flush into your septic tank that would create serious problems, and at the worst, could cause the entire system to cease functioning.
- Cooking oils and fats should not be disposed of down the sink drain. The first possibility is that it will clog the line leading from your house to the tank, but it also has the potential to cause serious difficulties with the soakaway system if your septic tank is connected to one. This is due to the fact that it can clog the perforated pores in the piping, preventing waste water from percolating into the soil
- And Chemicals that kill bacteria, such as antibacterial hand washes and kitchen cleaners, can be harmful to the “good” bacteria found in your septic tank, which can prevent it from performing as well as it should in breaking down the solids that are flushed into it (solids is a much more acceptable term than feces). Sanitary products should be disposed of properly in a trash can. Wet wipes (including face wipes) – some products will claim to be ‘flushable’, which means they will flush down the toilet. However, if the system becomes inaccessible, they will not be the ones to arrive and resolve the issue, therefore don’t take the chance
- Instead, Cleaning paint brushes outside rather than in the sink is recommended when working with chemicals like paints and varnishes. A chemical reaction might occur in your septic tank, interfering with the treatment process. To make matters worse, these tiny sticks of mischief have the potential to do significant damage to a septic tank. Due to the fact that they are non-biodegradable, they can become lodged in a sewage treatment plant or any other mechanical component of your drainage system, causing it to fail. Use disposable nappies and dispose of them properly rather than dumping them down the toilet
- Nappies are not biodegradable and can cause a serious obstruction in your septic tank. Cat litter- we’re not completely sure who flushes cat litter down the toilet in the first place, but it appears to be a very prevalent problem in many households. However, it is best avoided since it is mostly composed of clay particles, which can clog pipes and also do not degrade in the tank
- It is also toxic. Rainwater- it is best not to connect any rainwater down pipes or gullies to the septic tank in order to avoid overburdening the tank. Insufficient water entering the tank can agitate the contents, resulting in part of the lumpy material being flushed into the soakaway (I’m trying not to be too graphic, but we’re talking about septic tanks here!). Obviously, the puppies did not go into a septic tank, but you can read about what occurred when a 4-year-old decided his dog needed to be washed in this story. and decided that the toilet would be a convenient location to do it. Please do not attempt this at home, children.
Finally, we’ll leave you with this sign that we came across, which we believe perfectly summarizes everything. Remember, if you have any issues with your septic tank or soakaway, you can contact the professionals at UKDP on 0800 028 9903 for assistance.
Can I Flush That? A List of Items You Should and Should Not Flush When You Have a Septic System
It is always vital to be careful of what you are flushing down the toilet in order to avoid clogging it up with foreign objects. Items like as diapers and paper towels, for example, should never be flushed down the toilet. The situation becomes much more critical when you have a septic system in your home or business. This is due to the fact that you may accidentally kill the bacteria in your tank or introduce something into your system that will take a long time to degrade. Both of these factors have the potential to generate blockages and back-ups.
- Here are a few of those dos and don’ts:Do Flush Septic Safe Toilet PaperIf you have a septic system, you will want to use septic safe toilet paper.Don’t Flush Septic Safe Toilet PaperIf you have a septic system, you will want to use septic safe toilet paper.
- Tampons, on the other hand, may be flushed down the toilet in a standard toilet.
- Because the tampons do not decompose, they might accumulate in your tank and cause it to overflow.
- Products containing harsh chemicals have the potential to harm the beneficial, waste-eating microorganisms in your tank.
- If you have a septic system, make sure that your cleaning products are safe to use.Don’t Flush Dead FishLast but not least, if your child’s beloved goldfish dies, you may want to give them a proper burial by flushing them down the toilet.
- The fish can introduce a variety of germs into your tank, perhaps destroying the beneficial bacteria already there.
To properly dispose of the fish, place it in the garbage. The items you flush might have a negative influence on your septic system. It is important to utilize septic-safe items to guarantee that you are not introducing anything into your system that may be harmful.
Household Products That Will Ruin Your Septic Tank!
Many people who have septic tanks are unaware of what they may and cannot flush down their toilets or down their sinks. It may come as a surprise to find just how delicate septic tanks are, and how many common household goods can cause harm to and/or block your septic tank if you don’t know what you’re doing. By keeping these things out from your drains, you can maintain your septic tank in good shape and avoid costly septic repairs down the road. Chemical Cleaners are a type of cleaning agent that uses chemicals to remove dirt and grime.
You may disturb the bacteria cycle in your septic tank by pouring anti-bacterial cleansers like bleach down your drains and down your toilets.
Additives Several septic tank additives make the promise that they will enhance the amount of bacteria in your septic system.
The Environmental Protection Agency and the American Ground Water Trust, on the other hand, warn that chemical additions may cause more harm than good to your tank.
Using Bath Oils Oil floats to the top of your septic tank, where it congeals and hardens to produce a layer of scum on the surface.
It has the ability to withstand bacterial activity and embed in the solid waste layer.
Grease from the kitchen Grease of any kind contributes to the buildup of scum in your septic tank.
Unless otherwise instructed, you should avoid dumping oil down your sinks.
In addition, dryer papers might jam the entrance baffle.
Over time, the clay will clog your pipes and cause your septic tank to fail completely.
Products Made of Latex The majority of latex-based products are not biodegradable.
If the outlet tee is missing, the latex may clog the drain field on its way out of your septic tank, causing it to back up and choke the tank.
Paints and oils are two types of media.
In order to maintain your soil and groundwater free of diseases, you must have this bacterium on hand.
Prescription medications and chemotherapy medications Even after passing through a patient’s digestive system, powerful medications may still retain active ingredients that are harmful to them.
If possible, avoid allowing drug-contaminated faeces to enter your home’s septic tank.
Some prescription medications have the potential to be harmful to the environment.
Chemicals for Automatic Toilet Cleaning Systems Automatic toilet cleaners release an excessive amount of anti-bacterial chemicals into your septic tank, causing it to overflow.
Instead, choose toilet cleansers that are suitable for septic systems.
Even minute amounts of string, on the other hand, can clog and ruin pump impellers.
In a period of time, it will encircle a pump and cause harm to your septic tank’s mechanical components.
Your tank is only capable of holding a specific amount of domestic water; it cannot accommodate big volumes of water from a pool or roof drain.
Don’t use your sinks or toilets as garbage cans; this is against the law.
Put your trash in the garbage to prevent having to pay extra in pump-out fees.
Young children, on the other hand, may be unable to comprehend how toilets function.
Rather than degrading, the clothes are likely to clog your septic tank.
Butts for Cigarettes Cigarette filters have the potential to clog the tank.
For a comprehensive list of potentially dangerous goods, consult your septic tank owner’s handbook or consult with a specialist.
If possible, avoid flushing non-biodegradable goods down the toilet or down the drain. You will save money on costly repairs and you will extend the life of your tank by taking these precautions.