Do not put cigarette butts, paper towels, sanitary tampons, condoms, disposable diapers, anything plastic or similar non-biodegradables into a septic tank system. Avoid washing food scraps, coffee grinds, and other food items down the drain. Avoid using a garburator to dispose of kitchen wastes.
How can I avoid septic tank problems?
- To avoid septic tank problems, use organic and biodegradable household products wherever possible. Never put drain cleaners into the system – just a small quantity of these harsh chemicals can wreak havoc on the bacteria and cause septic tank problems.
What should you avoid with a septic tank?
You should not put these items into your commode:
- Cat litter.
- Coffee grounds.
- Cigarette butts.
- Dental floss.
- Disposable diapers.
- Sanitary napkins or tampons.
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.
Are long showers bad for septic systems?
Washing frequent, small loads of laundry or taking exceptionally long showers every day is all it takes to overload your septic system with too much water. The primary treatment tank needs time to break up solids before partly-treated water can enter the drain field.
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.
Is Dawn dish soap safe for septic systems?
One of the best know is commercials for Dawn dish soap. The ability for the cleaner to disperse oil and grease is better for cleaning, as it helps to break it up. The reason these are bad for septic systems is because if you use too much they can leach out into the environment without being properly treated.
What happens if you never pump your septic tank?
What Are the Consequences of Not Pumping Your Tank? If the tank is not pumped, the solids will build up in the tank and the holding capacity of the tank will be diminished. Eventually, the solids will reach the pipe that feeds into the drain field, causing a clog. Waste water backing up into the house.
What is the most common cause of septic system failure?
Most septic systems fail because of inappropriate design or poor maintenance. Some soil-based systems (those with a drain field) are installed at sites with inadequate or inappropriate soils, excessive slopes, or high ground water tables.
Are dead animals good for septic tanks?
This is false. Rotting meat just adds unnecessary and foreign bacteria to your septic tank. At best, this will do nothing. At worst, bones and fur from a dead animal will clog up your system.
How do you know when septic tank is full?
Here are some of the most common warning signs that you have a full septic tank:
- Your Drains Are Taking Forever.
- Standing Water Over Your Septic Tank.
- Bad Smells Coming From Your Yard.
- You Hear Gurgling Water.
- You Have A Sewage Backup.
- How often should you empty your septic tank?
Are egg shells bad for septic?
Never put these items down the disposal if you have a septic tank. Egg shells – The bacteria in your septic tank cannot break these down, and because they float, they can cause other significant problems once inside your septic tank. These are another wonderful addition to your compost pile though!
Is vinegar harmful to septic tanks?
Will baking soda hurt a septic system? Baking soda and other common household solutions such as vinegar are not harmful to your septic system. Harsh chemicals such as bleach and ammonia can disrupt the good bacteria in your septic tank and should not be used as part of a septic treatment.
Is toothpaste septic safe?
Believe it or not, but certain brands of toothpaste can actually harm your septic system. When possible, look for a natural paste or a baking soda-based toothpaste. If that is not possible, always avoid any pastes that have polyethylene in them.
Can you pour milk down the drain if you have a 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.
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
If you have one of these, it has the potential to pollute your septic tank, endangering the water supply for your entire area. Make a Time for Consultation
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 multiple 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
Top 10 Items To Avoid Putting In Your Septic System
Submitted byRobert Robillard on Home Repairs, Plumbing, and Electrical
Caring for Your Septic System
If you have a septic system in your home, you must exercise extreme caution when it comes to the household goods that you use. Septic systems rely on bacteria to break down wastes and sediments, but in order for these bacteria to live, they must be in a certain environment. If you use the incorrect type of detergent in your washing machine or the incorrect drain cleaner, you may wind up destroying the microorganisms in your septic system, leaving it inoperable. Overflows, obstructions, flooded drain fields, and even groundwater pollution can result as a result of this.
When you have unused prescriptions on hand, it might be tempting to flush them down the toilet to eliminate them. DON’T. Pharmaceuticals have the potential to disrupt the bacterial equilibrium in your septic system, resulting in septic system failure. They also contribute to the spread of “superbugs,” germs that are resistant to antibiotics and represent a threat to the health of the entire population. Improperly disposed of drugs damage groundwater, putting the environment and, more importantly, your own drinking water at risk of contamination.
In a countrywide survey conducted in 2000, pharmaceuticals were discovered in 80 percent of the rivers and streams examined.
To safely dispose of medications
Find out if there is a medication disposal program near you. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) organizes National Prescription Drug Take-Back activities, which involve setting up collecting locations in towns around the country to ensure that prescription medicines are properly disposed of. A pharmaceutical take-back program sponsored by your local police department may also be available. If you are unable to locate a pharmaceutical take-back program in your area, you should contact your local waste management authority to learn about drug disposal choices and requirements in your region.
After removing pills out of their original containers and combining them with a “undesirable item” (such as cat litter or old coffee grounds), the FDA suggests placing the combination in a Ziploc bag or a container with a lid and tossing the entire package in the trash.
Non-Septic Safe Toilet Paper
The only item that should be flushed into your septic tank is human waste, and that should be done using a septic safe toilet paper. A toilet paper that is biodegradable and dissolves fast is essential.
On the packaging, look for the words “Septic Safe.” After evaluating 21 brands for softness, strength, and ripping ease in March of 2014, two brands stood out: White Cloud 3 Ply Ultra and Charmin Ultra Strong, however the Charmin did not disintegrate as rapidly as the White Cloud.
“Flush-able Wipes” and other Clogging Hazards
Flushable wipes, despite the fact that they are advertised as such, are anything but; they can take up to 10 minutes to break up and provide a significant clog danger.
It is possible that your laundry contributes a significant portion of the volume in your septic system. It is likely that the majority of the laundry detergents available at your local grocery shop include some form of environmental contamination. Look for the following:
Low Suds or Biodegradable:
Surfactants, which are foaming agents, are found in all soaps and detergents, and they are used to create foam. They work by lowering the surface tension of fluids, letting them to flow more freely between solids and so remove dirt from the surface of objects. Unfortunately, they have a negative impact on cell membranes and microorganisms, and they will harm the bacteria colony in your septic system. Fortunately, they decay rapidly and do not constitute a significant hazard to groundwater.
Low or no phosphorous and nitrogen:
We are fortunate in that nutrient pollutants such as phosphates and nitrates are now being phased out of the detergents we use since they encourage the growth of algae and weeds that choke out fish and wildlife in our ponds, lakes, streams, and rivers.
Chlorine bleach is extremely hazardous and should be avoided if possible, or used in small amounts when necessary. Unfortunately, chlorine bleach is included in a variety of cleaning and disinfecting products. Alternatives that are more effective include oxygen-based bleaches for laundry and white vinegar for disinfection.
Avoid using antibacterial hand soaps and any product that claims to be antibacterial. This is not only due to the obvious harm they could do to your bacterial colony, which is required for your septic system to function, but it is also due to the fact that they are now being linked to the development of antibiotic resistant “superbugs.” The good old-fashioned soap and water will suffice.
Automatic Toilet Cleaners
In addition to killing the germs in your toilet, the antibacterial compounds in automated toilet cleaners destroy the microorganisms in your septic tank as well. These toilet cleansers have the potential to result in a septic tank that is overflowing with blue water and a large amount of dead bacteria. A mixture of baking soda and white vinegar, used to clean the toilet, will provide similarly effective foamy results that are completely safe.
Dishwasher detergent is more likely than laundry detergent to include phosphates and surfactants, both of which are toxic to the microorganisms in your septic tank and should be avoided. They can also move through your septic tank to the drain field, where they can eventually seep into the soil and leak into ground water, putting your family at danger of drinking polluted water. Look for and use detergent that is free of phosphates.
Drain cleaners should not be used by any homeowner, including those who do not have septic systems in their homes. Chemical drain cleaners not only have the potential to harm beneficial bacteria in your septic tank, but they may also eat away at your pipes! The caustic soda or lye employed in them is a potent oxidant and can result in serious burns if ingested or handled improperly. If your drains are blocked, it is far preferable to spend a little extra money to call a plumber to unclog them rather than using a chemical drain cleaner to clear them.
If there is a problem, you will wind up having to pay a lot more for the damage than you would have if you had hired a professional to do the job.
DIY Drain Cleaner:
- Add 1/2 cup baking soda to the drain and let it sit for a few minutes before adding 1/2 cup white vinegar mixed with extremely hot water to the drain. Allow for a few minutes of resting. This will trigger a chemical reaction, resulting in a lot of foaming, therefore stop the drain or cover it with a towel. The combination will begin to operate immediately, breaking down any lipids into salt and inert gas. Boiling water should be used to flush
Bathing with some baby oil may provide you with silky-soft skin when you get out, but it’s not a good idea for your septic tank’s performance. Once the oil has been washed into your septic tank, it produces a layer of scum on top of the floating waste, preventing it from settling. As a result, the bacteria are unable to penetrate the oil, preventing them from decomposing the waste. Additionally, the oil might obstruct your drain field.
Don’t flush anything inorganic down the toilet such as paints, solvents, insecticides, oils, or anything else that might kill the bacteria.
Other UnsafeSeptic Items – Things not to flush include
- Disposable diapers
- Sanitary napkins or tampons
- Paper towels or bandages
- Dental floss
- Cigarette butts
- Disposable diapers
- Disposable diapers Coffee grinds
- Kitty litter
- And so on.
Author’s Bio:Steve McGonagle, proprietor of Septic Genie, assists homeowners in diagnosing and resolving their septic system problems. The Septic Genie method, which was first patented in 1995, has assisted hundreds of households in restoring their damaged septic systems while avoiding the expensive cost of “dig and replace.” is a website dedicated to providing trouble-free septic systems for life.
What NOT to Put in Your Septic Tank
When septic systems are operated in the manner intended, they perform optimally. It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing that everything you flush down the toilet or wash down the drain will just disappear. When your home is connected to a sewage system, you may be pretty certain that your water waste is at the very least transported away from your home. The contents of your toilet bowl either remain on your property or in your septic tank until you have it removed from the system.
Being kind to your septic tank pays dividends
Your septic tank is a biological system that decomposes organic waste, primarily human waste, in a controlled environment. The use of this method for disposing of other organic (and inorganic) waste products is not recommended. There are a few items that you should never put into your septic tank in order to avoid this situation. Food. Food should not be flushed down the toilet, and if at all possible, avoid using a garbage disposal. Grease and oil contribute to the formation of the scum layer on the surface of the tank, but they have no effect on the biological activity occurring there.
- Consider starting a compost pile for food waste that is derived from plants.
- Facial tissues, sanitary napkins and tampons, disposable diapers, baby wipes, paper towels, cigarette butts, kitty litter and other waste from the toilet should be disposed of in the garbage.
- If you didn’t create it and it isn’t toilet paper, you should avoid flushing it altogether.
- Drain cleaners are quite damaging to your plumbing system, as well as to your septic system as well.
- Drain cleansers should not be used!
- Cleaners for the home.
- Bacteria-killing products such as bleach, toilet bowl cleansers, and home cleaners are also available.
- The use of household cleansers, which do not discriminate between harmful and healthy bacteria, should be minimized to the greatest extent feasible.
- Paint, varnish, paint thinner, antifreeze, expired prescription prescriptions, antibacterial soap, pesticides, gasoline, kerosene, oil, or anything else of a similar kind should not be flushed down the bathroom sink.
- These chemicals will kill the microorganisms in your septic tank, and worse than that, they will damage the groundwater in the surrounding area, which includes your well.
For information about hazardous household waste disposal locations in your area, contact your local county offices. In order to arrange service or drain cleaning, please call Clear Drain Cleaning at (330) 343-7146 for any and all of your drainage and drain maintenance requirements.
Household Products That Will Ruin Your Septic Tank!
Your septic tank is a biological system that decomposes organic waste, primarily human waste, in a natural environment. Other organic (and inorganic) waste products should not be disposed of in this manner. Due to the nature of septic tanks, there are certain items that should never be dumped into them. Food. Avoid flushing food down the toilet and, if at all possible, avoid using a trash disposal. Grease and oil contribute to the formation of the scum layer on the surface of the tank, but they have no effect on the biological activity taking place under the surface of the tank itself.
- Consider setting up a compost pile for plant-based food waste.
- Facial tissues, sanitary napkins and tampons, disposable diapers, baby wipes, paper towels, cigarette butts, kitty litter and other garbage from the toilet should be disposed of in the trashcan.
- Basically, if you didn’t manufacture it yourself and it isn’t toilet paper, you shouldn’t flush it.
- As a result, the bacteria in your septic tank are killed, resulting in the tank being essentially shut down.
- For those who cannot manually unclog their drains, we will be pleased to clear them for you in a safe and effective manner.
- Normal household cleansers are not prohibited, however they should be used with caution.
- Bacteria on surfaces in your house is harmful, yet bacteria in your septic tank is beneficial.
- Cleaning agents for the home.
- For information about hazardous household waste disposal locations in your area, contact your county’s administrative offices.
Do you have any questions about how septic systems work? During the whole time I lived in Cincinnati, I never gave it a second thought. All of the residences I resided in were linked to a municipal sewer system. I attached a sewage connection to nearly every house I constructed throughout my construction career. Only a few of the houses I constructed required their own septic systems. One particular house, on the other hand, stands out in my memory. The land was insufficiently large to sustain a standard leach field setup.
- An engine with a propeller mounted on a shaft that extended down into the septic tank was there.
- This engine would spin for 10 minutes per hour, similar to how a kitchen blender would function.
- Visiting a medium- or large-scale sewage treatment plant will reveal exactly what I’m talking about.
- A excellent method of getting rid of all of the potentially dangerous substances that may be found in wastewater is to introduce oxygen into it.
- Wastewater travels via a 4-inch pipe that links to a big precast concrete tank when you flush your toilet or when water drains from a tub, shower, vanity, or kitchen sink, among other things.
- Septic designers calculate the size of the system depending on the amount of waste that is expected to be generated in the home on a daily basis.
- Within the tank, some tanks have different walls and baffles than others.
As they make their way inside the tank, these creatures are meant to crash into this wall.
Make certain that your tank is fitted properly so that the drain line enters the tank with the drain pipe pointing exactly at this little wall.
The bacteria in the tank begins to work immediately to break down the waste.
For every gallon of water that enters the septic tank, a gallon of water exits the tank in the same manner.
It flows from the tank to the leach field, or it is pushed up a slope to get there.
The pipes are often put on a thick layer of washed sand to provide a stable foundation.
Plenty of oxygen may be found in the sand, which also contains a large number of microorganisms.
It’s a straightforward method that has stood the test of time.
Several years ago, when living in Cincinnati, I used to flush everything and everything down my drainpipes.
That was a poor attitude, and local sewer plant workers wished that more people shared their concern for the environment.
grease from kitchen pots and pans had been emulsified by me, and it had most likely solidified farther down the sewage line.
The only things that should be flushed down the toilet are waste from your body and toilet tissue.
Never flush flushable wipes down the toilet or into a septic tank or public sewer system.
Visit theAsktheBuilder.com website and view my flushable wipes demonstration video!) If you plan to construct in a rural region where a septic tank will be required, consider installing a utility sink in the laundry room or garage that drains straight outside of the building.
As a result, many inspectors allow this gray water to flow onto the ground away from your property since they don’t want you to put paint, grease, or other unidentified substances into your septic tank.
The need to pump your sewage tank at least once every three years cannot be overstated.
The expense of replacing a leach field might run into the hundreds of dollars.
You can understand why doing so is quite beneficial. It costs less than $100 on average each year, on average. Subscribe to Tim’s free newsletter and tune in to his latest podcasts to stay up to date. Visit the website: AsktheBuilder.com.
What makes septic systems work? Do you have any questions? In all the years I spent in Cincinnati, I never gave it any attention. All of the residences I resided in were connected to the city’s sanitary system. The sewage line was connected to nearly every house I constructed throughout my construction career. Septic systems were only required in a few of the homes I developed. My memory is flooded with images of one particular mansion. A typical leach field would not have been feasible on this property.
- An engine with a propeller attached to a shaft that extended down into the septic tank was there.
- This engine would spin for 10 minutes every hour, much like a kitchen blender, and would produce a similar result.
- Visiting a medium- or large-scale sewage treatment plant will reveal exactly what I’m speaking about.
- A excellent method of getting rid of all of the potentially dangerous substances found in wastewater is to introduce oxygen into it.
- When you flush your toilet or drain water from a tub, shower, vanity, or kitchen sink, the wastewater is channeled via a 4-inch pipe that links to a big precast concrete tank.
- Depending on the quantity of trash that is expected to be generated in the home each day, septic designers will size them accordingly.
- Different walls and baffles are used in different tanks to provide a unique interior environment.
In order to aid in the breakdown of any particles and toilet paper that rush into the tank, a suspended concrete wall has been constructed.
Trouble is, most tanks have inlets that allow the plumber to attach the drain pipe parallel to this wall, which is not always the case.
Bacteria can be found in a variety of sources, including bodily waste, food, and skin oils.
One of the tank’s exit pipes may be found on the other side of it, opposite the entrance pipe.
A large number of tiny bacteria and pathogens are present in the partly treated water that exits the tank.
After entering a maze of pipes with holes in them, the wastewater is disposed of properly.
A number of pipelines carry the wastewater to the sand, where it is progressively introduced into the environment.
These two processes work together to filter the wastewater that drops out of the leach field pipelines into the surrounding environment.
What’s more, if you’re careful about what you put into your septic tank, it will perform really effectively.
I was under the impression that as long as it made it out to the sewage line, it wasn’t my responsibility.
The attitude was poor, and local sewer plant workers wished more people shared their concerns.
As a result of my efforts, a lot of oil from cooking pans had congealed farther down the sewage line.
The only things that should be flushed down the toilet are waste from your body and toilet paper.
Always remember not to flush flushable wipes down the toilet or into the sewage system.
To see my flushable wipes video, visit the AsktheBuilder.com website.
As a result, do not run a septic tank drain line from the kitchen sink.
Use this sink to wash all of the undesirable items, not the other sinks in your house.
Because it is cost-effective, you can rest assured that your leach field will not be harmed in the process.
For pumping out my 1,000-gallon septic tank, I pay only $285 in 2021 dollars.
Hopefully, you can see why doing so is extremely beneficial. It costs less than $100 on average per year to maintain the system. Subscribe to Tim’s free newsletter and tune in to his latest podcasts to learn more about him. AsktheBuilder.com is a good place to start looking.
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.
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.
Top 10 products to avoid using when you have a septic tank
What you let to enter your septic tank will have a direct influence on the efficiency and lifetime of the tank itself. Bacteria exist in your septic system, and they perform an important part in the system by digesting the organic waste that enters it. As a result, it is your responsibility to avoid flushing anything down the toilet that might potentially harm the beneficial bacteria. Try to avoid flushing anything that can be disposed of properly in the garbage as a general rule of thumb However, to make it even obvious, here are the top 10 home goods that should be avoided if you have a septic tank.
Fabric softeners are a terrible choice for septic system owners because of the way they operate on a fundamental level of operation. They accomplish this by introducing slimy chemicals into clothing in order to soften the textiles. These slimy molecules are referred to as quats (quaternary ammonium compounds), and they have been shown to be effective against bacteria. Also included in the formulation is an acid-base mixture that is intended to regulate pH levels while washing in order to increase absorption.
Fabric softeners become poisonous to bacteria as a result of the presence of all of these substances, and you should avoid using them.
Latex materials are typically non-biodegradable, and as a result, they should be avoided while flushing the toilet. This implies that latex products will not be digested by the bacteria and will only be eliminated at the time of the next pumping session. In certain instances, the latex may even make its way into the drain field, causing the system to become clogged and ineffective. According to popular belief, latex condoms are only constructed from the material of rubber. Truth be told, certain synthetic components are also added to make them stronger and thinner, although this is not well known.
Medicines are goods that should not be flushed down the toilet if you have a septic system in your home. Never succumb to the temptation of dumping leftover medications down the toilet. Pharmaceutical goods have the potential to disrupt the bacterial equilibrium in a septic tank, resulting in septic tank failure. The compounds included in medications are also capable of leaking through the drain field and harming the groundwater. This is actually a pretty typical occurrence in today’s society.
For example, according to a 2008 research, at least 41 million Americans were drinking water that had been polluted by a variety of pharmaceuticals. Instead of flushing your medications down the toilet, take use of accessible take-back disposal services.
Even from the name, it is clear that antibacterial soap is a product that has been particularly created to fight bacteria. If you pour this sort of soap down your drain, it will accomplish exactly what it says on the label – it will destroy the beneficial bacteria in your septic system. To avoid this, simply wash your hands with regular soap. Natural disinfectants such as lime juice can also be used in place of antibacterial soaps to keep your home clean.
Heavy metals such as zinc, chromium, silver, cadmium, and even titanium are included in the majority of cosmetic items. The septic tank becomes contaminated with some of these metals when you wash these cosmetics off in the sink. The fact that these metals are not biodegradable means that they will ultimately exit the septic tank in their original condition and wind up poisoning groundwater sources. Cosmetics, as a result, are among the most crucial goods to avoid while using a septic system.
Pipe corrosion is a result of the use of drain cleaners, which not only destroy germs in the septic system, but they also erode the pipes themselves. Therefore, drain cleaners should be avoided at all costs, especially in the case of people who do not utilize a septic system. To be on the safe side, utilize a degreaser that is both enzymatic and bacterial in nature. For anyone interested, Bio-Soli is now offering a really decent one. It comes in the form of a liquid and is really effective.
Bleach is extremely poisonous to bacteria and should be avoided or used sparingly in any situation. When it comes to washing clothing, using bleach in modest amounts is OK; but, if you use too much bleach, the bleach may destroy the beneficial bacteria in the septic tank. Furthermore, bleach will exit the septic tank in its original state, resulting in pollution of the groundwater supply system.
Dishwasher and laundry detergent
In most cases, phosphates and surfactants are included in laundry and dishwashing detergents, and these substances can readily enter the drain field. Apart from causing harm to the beneficial bacteria, these phosphates and surfactants have the potential to leach out of the septic tank in a hazardous form, poisoning the surrounding groundwater supply. Always use detergents that are devoid of phosphates to prevent getting into this situation.
It is not recommended to flush food particles down the toilet. Even though they have been crushed, they will not give up. This is due to the fact that food particles decompose at a slower rate than other types of organic waste. As a result, these food particles may find their way into your leach field, where they may cause clogs. All residual food particles should be scraped off the plates and disposed of in the compost bin after they have been used.
Fats, Oils, and Greases (FOG)
In the event that you pour FOG down your sink, you will draw all types of issues. In the first instance, the FOG will cool down and become trapped on the edges of the pipes. In the meanwhile, the collected fog will continue to trap debris, which might eventually result in clogged pipes. Second, bacteria are not easily able to break down fats, oils, and greases, as previously stated. FOG will just float to the surface of the septic tank and contribute to the formation of the scum layer.
As the FOG continues to build up, the septic tank will begin to fill up much more quickly than usual. Before washing greasy utensils, wipe them down with a paper towel to ensure that you are not flushing too much fat down the drain.
Being aware of the items to avoid using in your house can assist you in extending the life of your septic system as well as avoiding avoidable failures in the future. The 10 goods to avoid that we discussed above are some of the most often dangerous products on the market, but the list just scratches the surface of the problem. The number of things that you may be utilizing that are operating your septic system without your knowing is virtually limitless. That’s why we put up a detailed eBook that includes a list of 30 things that you should avoid if you have a septic system.