Why Can’T I Flush My System Into The Septic Tank? (Best solution)

A common indicator of septic tank problems is a toilet that’s slow to flush — or won’t flush at all — and a plunger can’t fix the issue. The tank may be full, or there could be a clog in the pipes. Slow Drains. Watch out for slow-draining sinks, showers, and bathtubs.


  • Sometimes, they become clogged with items that should not have been flushed such as tampons, wet wipes, condoms or paper towels. If sewage is backing up into your home or surfacing around the septic tank, you might have a problem with the outlet baffle or effluent filter. Finally, check the inlet baffle to the tank if you have access to it.

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 can be flushed into septic tank?

Large, slow-to-decompose, solid items can fill up septic tanks quickly, causing clogs and backups. Some products, like diapers, can even cause a clog at the inlet baffle, leading to backups in the main line running to the tank. The only product that is safe to flush into the septic tank is toilet paper.

How do I get my toilet to flush when my septic tank is full?

All you have to do is lift the lid off the back of the toilet and check to see if the water level is below the indicated line. It is critical for your toilet to have a sufficient amount of water in its tank because otherwise, your toilet will not be able to create enough suction in the bowl for it to flush properly.

How do you clean out a clogged septic tank line?

Tips for Clearing a Clogged Drain

  1. Avoid cleaners with chemicals. Chemical-laden cleaners often break down the enzymes in your septic system, which are in place to help break down waste.
  2. Pour hot water down the drain.
  3. Use baking soda and vinegar.

How do you tell if your septic tank is full?

How to tell your septic tank is full and needs emptying

  1. Pooling water.
  2. Slow drains.
  3. Odours.
  4. An overly healthy lawn.
  5. Sewer backup.
  6. Gurgling Pipes.
  7. Trouble Flushing.

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

  1. Install an aeration system with diffused air in your septic tank.
  2. Break up any compacted sludge.
  3. Add a bio-activator or microbe blend.
  4. Maintain the aeration system.
  5. Add additional Microbes as required.

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.

Why is my toilet not flushing but not clogged?

If your toilet isn’t flushing all the way, it’s most likely because of one of these problems: The water level in your toilet tank is set too low. A clog in the toilet, flange or drain. Blocked inlet holes.

How do I know if my septic line is clogged?

Stay vigilant for five signs your drainfield does not drain correctly anymore.

  1. Slowing Drainage. Homeowners first notice slower than usual drainage from all the sinks, tubs, and toilets in a home when they have a compromised drainfield.
  2. Rising Water.
  3. Increasing Plant Growth.
  4. Returning Flow.
  5. Developing Odors.

How do you know if your septic field is failing?

The first signs of a failing septic system may include slow draining toilets and sinks, gurgling noises within the plumbing, sewage odors inside, continuing drainage backups, or bacteria in the well water. The area of the strongest odor will point to the location of the failure in the septic system.

4 Things to Stop Flushing Into Your Septic Tank

Did you have obstructions in your septic tank or require repairs this year? What you flush down your toilet might be a contributing factor to the issue. Being aware of what should be flushed and what should not be flushed might assist you in maintaining your septic system. These suggestions will assist you in changing your behaviors and preventing septic tank blockages in the future. In order for solids to be broken down and turned into liquids in septic tanks, bacteria must be present. Antibiotics, for example, might kill off beneficial bacteria, causing the breakdown of sediments to be slower than it should be and requiring your tank to be pumped more frequently than necessary.

In the event that you are unsure of what to deal with your remaining medication after you have completed taking it, consult your pharmacist.

Many things are promoted as flushable, and this is a good thing.

In most cases, however, these items are not suitable for use in septic tanks.

  1. A blockage at the input baffle caused by certain goods, such as diapers, might result in back-ups in the main line going to the tank.
  2. If members of your family habitually flush other objects down the toilet, you should arrange a family conversation regarding septic tank cleaning and maintenance.
  3. Food is readily flushed down kitchen sink drains, whereas trash disposals flush microscopic fragments of food down drain lines as well as down the sink.
  4. Keep a drain strainer in your kitchen sink (or sinks) to capture any food that washes off your dishes in order to avoid any difficulties in the future.
  5. Otherwise, get it replaced or discontinue use of it entirely.
  6. As a build-up of cooking oil accumulates in the input baffle, other particles of debris may become trapped in the sticky trap.
  7. After frying, let the oil to cool before pouring it into a trash bag and tossing it in the garbage.
  8. It is a sensible approach to save money while also preserving your septic system when you repurpose leftover cooking oil.
  9. Fats and grease can readily pass down drains, but they can ultimately block the septic system and cause it to overflow.
  10. If your property is serviced by a septic system, follow the procedures outlined above to modify your behaviors and prevent unnecessary damage to your system from occurring.

Contact your local septic tank specialist, Al’s Septic Tank Service, if you have any questions about what more you can do to keep your septic tank protected and prevent clogging.

Septic Systems: To Flush Or Not To Flush?

When it comes to septic systems, the type of waste that is flushed or drained into the system can have a significant impact on the system’s overall performance. It is harmful to your pipes and the functionality of your septic system to flush or drain anything other than excrement, urine, and water down your toilet or sink. This can cause build-up and/or blockage in your pipes and harm to the living organisms that help maintain a proper balance in your septic system. Consider it this way: if anything is not instantly biodegradable or ecologically friendly, it should not be flushed or disposed of in the toilet.

Moreover, while this is not an exhaustive list, it will assist you in making appropriate disposal decisions:

  • The use of cooking oil and/or grease: Oils and grease can harden in pipework, causing blockages and septic system backups. Any form of flushable wipe is acceptable: Some kinds of wipes will say that they are “Safe for your Septic System,” but we urge that you throw them out with the trash. When compared to toilet paper, wipes decompose at a slower pace. As a matter of fact, wipes can take weeks or months to break down completely, and as a result, they can accumulate in the drain pipes and cause blockages and backups
  • As a result, When it comes to feminine hygiene products, it might be quite tempting to simply flush them down the toilet since who wants to fiddle with them? But don’t do it. Again, because they don’t decompose quickly, there’s a significant probability that they’ll only accumulate in the piping and cause an even worse problem to clean up
  • In most cases, dental floss is not biodegradable, and it can accumulate in the pipes and create clogging of the system, much as hair does. Furthermore, because it is non-biodegradable, it will either remain in the septic tank or might potentially seep out into the water supply system. Condoms are like a nightmare for your septic system since they are so absorbent. Large-scale system problems, such as back-up and blockage, are possible as a result of their presence. It is certainly worthwhile to take the effort to properly dispose of things in the trash
  • Diapers: It appears to be natural, doesn’t it? Shouldn’t anything that’s packed with stinking feces go straight into the toilet? Wrong. Diapers should never be flushed down the toilet or flushed down the drain. It is possible that they will create instant clogging and backup in your septic tank, and they will just sit at the bottom of your tank
  • Cigarette Butts: The fact that they are non-biodegradable and have the ability to float makes flushing them down a toilet or down a drain practically impossible
  • Canned coffee grounds are a two-pronged threat to your drain pipes and septic system. Isn’t it true that when you pull the coffee filter with its full of grounds out of the coffee maker, the grounds are quite tightly packed? Consider what it would be like in your drain pipes and septic system tank. They can accumulate in drain pipes, producing obstructions, or they can accumulate at the bottom of a septic tank, causing it to overflow. They will remain in a lump because they will not be impacted by the bacteria in the system
  • Sadly, this is the case. Litter for cats: We understand that this one is really enticing. Simply scooping and flushing is so much simpler and more sanitary. Simply put, you should not do so. Cat litter may harden and become brittle, similar to concrete, causing significant damage to your system and clogging your drains. This one is a complete and utter waste of time
  • Even though they can be useful in an emergency situation, paper towels, tissues, and other types of non-toilet paper wipes should not be flushed down the toilet or down the drain. This can become entangled in the toilet trap or drain pipe, resulting in a clogged toilet. Bleach/Chlorine: Regular home bleach can be used sparingly if used in a very restricted manner and in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines. Any bleach or chlorine substance has the potential to harm the environment in your septic system. It will destroy the necessary microorganisms, which you want to prevent at all costs

So keep in mind that you want to flush as little as possible into your septic system in order to minimize blockages, backups, and even damage to the system. In addition, the more solids you put in your tank, the more frequently you’ll have to pump it out! Your septic system will appreciate you for many years to come if you simply follow these easy rules!


In order to work effectively, septic systems must maintain a delicate equilibrium. Any of these factors (clog, lack of bacteria in the tank, rapid development of solid waste in the tank) might result in a system collapse that would be both difficult and expensive to fix. As a homeowner, one of the most important things you can do to keep your septic tank in good condition is to avoid flushing troublesome objects down the toilet or down the drain. You can take better care of your tank if you are aware of the objects that should not be flushed and why they should not be flushed.

  1. Bacteria in the tank break down the solid waste, transforming it into liquid refuse that is drained out of the tank and into the drain field, where it may be recycled.
  2. Antibacterial soaps and cleaning agents such as bleach that are flushed into your septic tank might cause the bacterial action in the tank to slow down, resulting in a dysfunctional tank and a need for more regular cleaning.
  3. Increase the amount of time you spend scrubbing and reduce the amount of bleach and antibacterial agents you use in your usual cleaning efforts.
  4. In the event that you are unsure of what to do with your remaining antibiotics after you have completed a course of treatment, see your physician.
  5. Products that are “flushable” Some items are labeled as “flushable,” yet they are not safe to use in septic systems because they contain harmful chemicals.
  6. When immersed in water, these objects become tougher, more absorbent, and grow in size.
  7. Overall, it is not safe to believe that any product can be flushed down the toilet merely because its packaging or manufacturer’s instructions state that it can.
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Grease Grease can clog the components of your septic tank and cause it to overflow.

However, the best method to avoid grease clogging your tank is to restrict the quantity of grease that gets flushed down your pipes to an absolute minimum.

Then just put the grease into a bag and toss it away.

Homes with sewer connections are not at risk, but homes with septic tanks may see an increase in the amount of food that accumulates at the bottom of the tank, which may need more frequent pumping and the possibility of a drain field clog.

Consult with your local septic tank pumping service provider.

We at Pete’s Outflow are happy to answer any questions that our clients may have about their septic tanks and how to maintain them. Give us a call at 831-475-0959 if you have any concerns about septic tanks or want to schedule an appointment.

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.

Septic System Do’s and Don’ts

1. Inspect your septic tank at least once a year. Septic tanks should be drained at least once every three to five years, in most cases. An assessment by you or a professional may reveal that you need to pump more or less frequently than you previously thought. Pumping the septic tank on a regular basis ensures that sediments do not flow from the tank into the drainfield. Solids can cause a drainfield to fail, and once a drainfield has failed, pumping will not be able to put it back into operation.

Reduce the amount of water you use (seeHome Water Savings Makes Sense).

Too much water from the washing machine, dishwasher, toilets, bathtubs, and showers may not provide enough time for sludge and scum to separate, resulting in particles passing out of the tank and into the drainfield, eventually blocking the pipes and causing them to clog.

  • Large water-guzzling equipment such as dishwashers and washing machines should be used sparingly. Bathroom and kitchen fixtures (such as faucets, shower heads, and toilets) that conserve water should be used. Spread out your laundry throughout the course of the week and avoid doing incomplete loads
  • Fix all leaks from faucets and toilets as soon as possible.

Drainage from downspouts and roofs should be directed away from the drainfield. It is possible that additional water from these sources will interfere with the effective operation of your drainfield. Vehicles and vehicles should be kept away from the septic tank and drainfield regions. This helps to keep pipes from breaking and dirt from being compacted during the construction process. Compacted soils do not have the ability to absorb water from the drainfield. 5. Make use of a detergent that is devoid of phosphates.

  • Additionally, the use of phosphate-free detergents aids in the prevention of algae blooms in adjacent lakes and streams Install risers to make it simpler to get in and out.
  • Drainfield Do’s and Don’ts provides extra information about drainfields.
  • The use of a trash disposal increases the amount of particles and grease in your system, increasing the likelihood of drainfield failure.
  • Because they enable sediments to flow into and clog the drainfield, some of these chemicals can actually cause damage to your on-site sewage system.
  • Water from hot tubs should not be disposed of into the on-site sewage system.
  • Hot tubs should be drained onto the ground, away from the drainfield, and not into a storm drainage system.
  • 4.
  • Putting powerful chemicals down the drain, such as cleaning agents, is not recommended.
  • 6.
  • Grass provides the most effective protection for your septic tank and drainfield.
  • Bacteria require oxygen to break down and cleanse sewage, and they cannot function without it.

The opinions and practices of the Environmental Protection Agency are not necessarily reflected in the contents of this publication, nor does the reference of trade names or commercial items imply support or recommendation for their use.

Signs of Septic System Failure

  • Flooding is occurring in the home as a result of backed up water and sewage from toilets, drains, and sinks Bathtubs, showers, and sinks all drain at a snail’s pace
  • The plumbing system is making gurgling sounds. The presence of standing water or moist patches near the septic tank or drainfield
  • Noxious smells emanating from the septic tank or drainfield
  • Even in the midst of a drought, bright green, spongy luxuriant grass should cover the septic tank or drainfield. Algal blooms in the vicinity of ponds or lakes In certain water wells, there are high quantities of nitrates or coliform bacteria.

Septic systems, like the majority of other components of your house, require regular maintenance. As long as it is properly maintained, the septic system should give years of dependable service. If the septic system is not properly maintained, owners face the risk of having a dangerous and expensive failure on their hands. Septic systems, on the other hand, have a limited operating lifespan and will ultimately need to be replaced. Septic systems that have failed or are not working properly pose a threat to human and animal health and can damage the environment.

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It is possible that a prompt response will save the property owner money in repair costs, as well as disease and bad influence on the environment in the future.

What happens when a septic system fails?

When a septic system fails, untreated sewage is dumped into the environment and carried to places where it shouldn’t be. This may cause sewage to rise to the surface of the ground around the tank or drainfield, or it may cause sewage to back up in the pipes of the structure. It is also possible that sewage will make its way into groundwater, surface water, or marine water without our knowledge. Pathogens and other potentially harmful substances are carried by the sewage. People and animals can become ill as a result of exposure to certain diseases and pollutants.

What are some common reasons a septic system doesn’t work properly?

The pipe between the home to the tank is obstructed. When this occurs, drains drain very slowly (perhaps much more slowly on lower floors of the structure) or cease draining entirely, depending on the situation. This is frequently a straightforward issue to resolve. The majority of the time, a service provider can “snake the line” and unclog the problem. Keeping your drains clear by flushing only human waste and toilet paper down the drain and having your system examined on an annual basis will help prevent clogs.

  1. Plant roots might occasionally obstruct the pipe (particularly on older systems).
  2. The inlet baffle to the tank is obstructed.
  3. In case you have access to your intake baffle aperture, you may see if there is a blockage by inspecting it.
  4. It is essential that you avoid damaging any of the septic system’s components.
  5. Avoid clogging your inlet baffle by just flushing human waste and toilet paper, and get your system examined once a year to ensure that it is in good working order.
  6. This may result in sewage backing up into the residence or surfacing near the septic tank as a result of the situation.
  7. If there is an effluent filter, it has to be cleaned or changed as necessary.

Preventing this sort of problem from occurring is as simple as cleaning your effluent filter (if you have one) and getting your system examined once per year.

It is possible for sewage to back up into the residence when the drainfield collapses or becomes saturated with water.

Additionally, smells may be present around the tank or drainfield.

It is possible that the system was run incorrectly, resulting in an excessive amount of solid material making its way to the drainfield and causing it to fail prematurely.

While it is conceivable that a drainfield will get saturated due to excessive quantities of water (either from enormous volumes of water flowing down the drain or flooding the drainfield), it is not always viable to dry out and restore a drainfield.

A connection to the public sewer system should be explored if the drainfield has failed and it is possible to make the connection.

It will be necessary to replace the existing drainfield if this does not take place. It is possible for a septic system to fail or malfunction for various reasons. Septic professionals should be contacted if your system isn’t functioning correctly.

How can I prevent a failure?

The proper operation of your septic system, together with routine maintenance, can help it last a long and trouble-free life. Assuming that your septic system has been correctly planned, located, and installed, the rest is up to you to take care of. Inspect your system once a year and pump as necessary (usually every 3-5 years). Avoid overusing water, and be mindful of what you flush down the toilet and what you flush down the drain. Learn more about how to properly maintain your septic system.

Can my failing septic system contaminate the water?

Yes, a failed septic system has the potential to pollute well water as well as adjacent water sources. Untreated wastewater is a health problem that has the potential to cause a variety of human ailments. Once this untreated wastewater enters the groundwater, it has the potential to poison your well and the wells of your neighbors. It is possible that oyster beds and recreational swimming sites will be affected if the sewage reaches local streams or water bodies.

Is there financial help for failing systems or repairs?

Yes, there are instances where this is true. Here are a few such alternatives.

  • In addition, Craft3 is a local nonprofit financial organization that provides loans in many counties. Municipal Health Departments- Some local health departments provide low-interest loan and grant programs to qualified applicants. A federal home repair program for people who qualify is offered by the USDA.

More Resources

  • Septic System 101: The Fundamentals of Septic Systems
  • Taking Good Care of Your Septic System
  • A video on how to inspect your septic system yourself
  • Using the Services of a Septic System Professional
  • Safety of the Septic Tank Lid

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.

Flushing condoms

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.

Antibacterial products

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 towels

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.

Cat litter

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.

The parasite Toxoplasma can cause major health difficulties in pregnant women and others with weakened immune systems. This parasite has been shown to cause brain damage and even death in some cases, according to the literature.

Dental floss

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.

Paper towels

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.

Septic System Information and Care

When municipal sewer service is not available, a septic system that has been properly constructed and maintained is an excellent option for treating wastewater and protecting groundwater quality. A typical septic system is comprised of two key components: the septic tank and the drainfield (or leach field). Waste from toilets, sinks, washing machines, and showers is channeled into a septic tank, which is a holding tank that is typically constructed of pre-cast concrete or fiberglass and is proportioned according to the projected wastewater flow from a given-sized house or commercial establishment.

  • In the first stage of wastewater treatment, anaerobic bacteria (bacteria that can survive in an oxygen-free environment) break down solids into liquids and generate gas that is vented through the building’s plumbing vent stack.
  • The lack of oxygen inside the septic tank also has the added benefit of deactivating some of the disease bacteria that are prevalent in sewage.
  • Because it allows aerobic (oxygen-using) bacteria to continue deactivating the disease germs that remain in the wastewater, the drainfield serves as a secondary treatment facility for sewage.
  • Evaporation of water also occurs through the layer of soil that surrounds the drainfield.
  • That way, enough permeable or unsaturated soil is available to filter the wastewater before the remainder of it gets into the groundwater table and underlying aquifer.
  • In certain instances, modern wastewater treatment systems that “aerate,” or add oxygen to the wastewater, may be necessary to treat the effluent.

Others are equipped with chlorinating chambers or peat moss-based filtering chambers, which kill disease germs before they may infiltrate into groundwater supplies.

Septic System Care

Don’t flush cigarette butts, tampons, condoms, or any other indigestible things down the toilet or down the sink drain. Consequently, the exit filter or drainfield will become clogged. Never throw grease down the drain since grease cannot be digested by the septic system and will cause it to become clogged! rather than dumping it in the garbage, pour it into an empty container or bottle and throw it away. Make sure you don’t use excessive amounts of bleach or other cleaning agents in your septic tank since doing so will interfere with the bacterial operation inside the tank.

  1. Instead of doing numerous loads of laundry back-to-back, stretch your wash loads out over the course of the week to reduce the amount of water that the septic system has to treat (a normal wash load consumes between 60 and 90 gallons each load!).
  2. Roots from trees and plants will grow into the drainlines and cause them to get obstructed.
  3. Driving over your drainfield can cause the pipes to become crushed or the dirt surrounding them to become compacted, and driving over your septic tank can cause the lid to fracture or even fall apart!
  4. Consider the installation of water-saving showerheads, toilets, and other water-saving appliances in your home.
  5. Septic tanks should be pumped out every four to five years, according to the Florida Department of Health, in order to prevent the buildup of sludge in the tank over time.
  6. Stoppages and overcrowded drainfields are caused by leaking toilet flapper valves, which can allow hundreds of thousands of gallons of waste water to enter your septic system each day.
  7. In addition to providing you with many useful suggestions and information, our Environmental Health Professionals can also assist you extend the life of your existing septic system.
See also:  What Happens To A Septic Tank When It Needs To Be Replaced? (Correct answer)

Septic Tank Cleaning Fort Collins: Never Put These Items Down the Drain If You Have a Septic Tank

A septic tank is something that most people are familiar with, and they are generally aware that they should get it cleaned every three to five years at the absolute least. But did you know that even if you get your tank serviced on a regular basis, there are things you might be doing that could be causing significant damage to your system and shortening the life of your tank? At Lion Home Service, we understand a thing or two about septic systems, and we also understand that it is sometimes what you don’t flush down the drain that may help to extend the life of your system and prevent a potentially hazardous sewage backup in your home or business.

In today’s post, we’ll go over all of the items that you should avoid flushing down the toilet or washing down the drain in order to save time and money. Follow the instructions below, and if you have any questions or need help, please contact Lion Home Service in Fort Collins.

How Does a Septic Tank Work?

In your house, if you perform an action that requires the flushing of a toilet or the washing of the garage floor, the water that is generated must be disposed of in some manner. Depending on whether you have a septic system or not, the water will either travel into pipes that will transport it away from your house and over to a central water treatment facility, or it will go directly to your septic tank. This container retains your wastewater and allows any particles to sink to the bottom of the container.

Caring For Your Septic Tank

After all, everything you flush down the toilet goes into a holding tank that is ultimately emptied, so you might ask why it matters so much what you flush down the toilet. There are two important considerations to bear in mind. First and foremost, whatever you flush down the toilet must be biodegradable, which means it must easily decompose in your tank. Items such as flushable wipes, cotton swabs, and even paper towels can not entirely decompose in a septic system, which might result in a major backup.

For the second time, you should never flush or wash anything down the drain that might potentially harm the beneficial bacteria in your septic system or contaminate groundwater.

Also, keep in mind that once the wastewater in your septic tank reaches a particular level, it will begin to run into your drainage system.

List of Items To Never Put Down the Drain

With the two most essential kinds of goods that might affect your septic system now defined, let us offer two lists of common home products that should never be flushed down the toilet or down the sink. Read them carefully and then distribute them to the rest of your family so that everyone is aware of what is and is not acceptable to flush down the toilet.

Hazardous Materials

  • Paint, gasoline, motor oil, weedkiller, solvents such as paint thinner, bleach, insecticide, herbicide, drain cleaner, and medications (particularly antibiotics) are all prohibited.

Non-Biodegradable Items

  • Toilet paper
  • Disinfectant wipes, paper towels, tissues, dental floss, cigarettes butts, coffee grinds, cat litter, condoms, feminine hygiene items, cotton swabs, and so on.

Despite the fact that this is not an exhaustive list, it should provide you with a general notion of the kind of items you should avoid flushing down the toilet. Cleansing products and even toilet paper that has been classified as safe for septic systems should be substituted instead. However, while knowing how to correctly care for your septic system may appear to be a burden, it will save you and the environment from any pollution concerns, and it will no doubt keep your septic system functioning smoothly for many years to come.

Signs Your Septic Tank Is Full

In the event that it has been several years since you last had your septic tank cleaned, or if you aren’t sure whether or not it has ever been done, it is critical that you arrange an appointment as soon as possible.

There are times when tanks will fill up; nevertheless, you’ll want to get it emptied out before it becomes an issue. But what if you already have a nagging feeling that something is wrong? The following are some clear symptoms that your septic tank may be overflowing with waste:

Pooling Water

In the event that you discover significant pools of water near your septic system’s drain field, it might be a sign that your tank is overflowing and that the wastewater isn’t being allowed to naturally evaporate.

Odors Coming From Drains

In the event that you discover enormous pools of water near your septic system’s drain field, it might be a sign that your tank is overflowing and the wastewater isn’t being allowed to naturally evaporate.

Slow Drains

If the water isn’t draining as rapidly as it used to, it might be an indication that your septic tank is overflowing and needs to be cleaned.

Sewage Backup

When a tank is completely filled, sewage will begin to overflow or back up into the pipes. If the situation is severe enough, sewage can even back up into your home’s drains, which is not only distasteful, but it also poses a substantial health danger to you and your family members.

Particularly Green Grass Around Your Drainfield

Sometimes you may detect pools of water around your drain field, but other times you may only notice that the grass around it is exceptionally lush and green. This is frequently another indication that your septic system is about to overflow.

Contact Lion Home Service For Septic Tank Cleaning

Do not allow your septic system to reach the point where it is overflowing with waste. Septic tank cleaning should be performed on a regular basis by Lion Home Service in Fort Collins. We are a family-owned and run business that serves the whole Northern Colorado region, including Loveland, Greeley, Longmont, Windsor, and Fort Collins, among other cities. Call today to receive your no-obligation quote. We look forward to being of service to you!

What Happens When You Flush?

Knowing a little bit about how your septic system operates might help you prevent septic system problems in the future. The most straightforward method of understanding is to follow the effluent. Septic systems are composed of four major components, each of which plays a significant role in wastewater treatment.

1.Pipe from your house

Whenever you flush the toilet, turn on the sink, or use the washing machine, the water that drains down the drain is referred to as wastewater. The first phase in the process is for the waste to flow out of your home into the conduit that leads to the sewage treatment plant.

2. Septic tank

When wastewater exits your house, it is sent into a septic tank for treatment. Septic tanks are typically placed underground in most regions. Unless you reside in a water-stressed area, your septic tank will be elevated above ground level. Solids sink to the bottom of the septic tank after the wastewater is contained within it. This is referred to as sludge. Fat, oil, and grease rise to the surface of the water. This is referred to as slime. The middle layer contains effluent that has been slightly clarified.

Septic tanks are designed with compartments and a T-shaped outlet to prevent sludge and scum from escaping the tank, allowing only water to pass through them.

The sludge and scum remain in the tank, where they are home to a colony of microorganisms that are alive and well. Over time, these bacteria are responsible for the natural breakdown of sludge and scum. The health and growth of the colony are dependent on the garbage that they consume for food.

3. Drainfield

The drainfield, which is sometimes referred to as the leachfield, disposal site, or soil absorption system, is the next stop for wastewater after the treatment plant. When new wastewater is introduced into the tank, the partially treated wastewater is pushed out of the tank by the incoming wastewater. Typically, it is transported onto the field using perforated pipes that ensure that the water is distributed uniformly. The majority of septic system issues occur at this point. The backup of sewage and wastewater into the house will occur if the drainage lines become sluggish.

Backups or pools of water and sewage at the surface of the field might result as a result of this practice.

4. Soil

Wastewater, once it has passed through the system and been treated, ends up in the soil. It’s easy to underestimate the importance of soil to a septic system, yet healthy soil is essential for a good septic system. When wastewater runs into the drainfield, the soil serves as the final stage in the treatment procedure. It performs the function of a biological filter. The soil contains microorganisms and bacteria that decompose the majority of the pollutants in wastewater before they reach the groundwater.

Septic Tank Maintenance from BiOWiSH TM will help you maintain a healthy septic system that doesn’t back up and cause flooding.

Sludge and scum are broken down, which allows wastewater to flow more freely and prevents backups from occurring.

The best part is that it is simple to use, and a single application is valid for three months.

Start taking care of your septic system right now.

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