When you rely on your home's septic system to handle your household sewer and water waste, you need it to work in tip-top shape year round. Here are some recommendations to help you take care of your home septic system so it can work well for you and keep a healthy balance within the tank..
Use the Right Household Cleaners
Cleaning your home is essential, but with a septic system you need to be careful about what cleaners and soaps you use that get flushed down the drain. Anything that is rinsed down your drain will end up in the septic tank where it will either help or hinder the balance of the system's beneficial bacteria.
First, use the right type of laundry soap to make sure it does not contain any sulfates. Sulfates are harmful to your septic tank bacteria balance, and harsh cleaners and drain cleaning chemicals can damage your septic tank by killing off the bacteria as well. You don't want to harm the bacteria's balance because it is responsible for breaking down the solid waste and fats that are rinsed through your septic system. Without good bacteria, your drain field will end up with waste flowing into it or the solids will remain solid and clog up your tank more quickly.
Watch Your Water Use
Another important tip to keep your septic system running efficiently is to watch the amount of water you use. Whenever you wash, have a shower, or run the dishwasher, you are putting extra water into your tank which goes into your drain field. Monitor your water usage so you don't put too much water into the system on one day, as it will overwhelm your tank.
If you, for example, do all your laundry on one day, this puts an excess amount of water into your tank and drain field lines. Instead, do one or two loads of laundry each day to keep it draining into the tank at a constant level. Too much water into the system will oversaturate the drain field soil and allow water to puddle on the surface when there is nowhere else for it to percolate into the soil.
Manage the Waste You Flush
In addition to using the right types of cleaners and managing your water usage, you also need to keep an eye on what is getting flushed down your drains. Your septic system is not a trash can or food scraps disposal, and if you have a kitchen sink disposal you should not use it.
Only plan to flush sewage waste and waste paper safe for septic systems into your tank. Don't flush any other personal care products or trash into the tank, such as paper towels, cotton swabs, or wet wipes, even if they are listed as safe for flushing down the toilet. In your kitchen sink, don't flush anything that won't dissolve, such as coffee grinds, egg shells, cigarette butts, or dental floss.
For more information about caring for your septic system, talk to a septic system cleaning service in your area.