If you live in a rural area, most likely you are on a septic system and you are not on a municipal sewer system. What this means for you is making sure you're always on top of the maintenance of your septic system, and that you know when you need to have professionals come in and do their part in helping to maintain your system. From keeping certain items and chemicals out of your system, to having your system pumped to make sure it does not overflow, there's a big responsibility that comes with being a home owner with a septic system, and this article will outline those responsibilities.
Step Away from the Toilet
Many people are tempted to flush a number of items down their toilets, not realizing the danger those items pose to the septic system. The following list are items that should never, under any circumstance, be flushed down a toilet:
- Cat Litter
- Cotton swabs
- Chemicals, including but not limited to oils, thinners, paints, used motor oil, cooking oil, and pesticides.
- Coffee grounds
There are many items that are dangerous for your septic system. The biggest reason for the danger is that these items can cause the system to become plugged, or are not biodegradable and won't break down naturally in your system. This will cause the system to fill up faster and it's possible the pumping will need to be done sooner rather than later.
Down the Drain
Additionally, there are some products that should never go down the drain and into your septic system. Harsh cleaners and laundry detergents and antibacterial soap are all bad for your septic system. This is because these cleaners stop the natural biological process of breaking down human waste. The following is a list of products you should probably avoid putting into your system:
- Chlorine Bleach
- Dishwashing Products - Only use non-chlorinated, phosphate free and biodegradable products.
- Laundry Detergent - Use only detergents that are biodegradable.
All products will list on their packaging if they are biodegradable.
Pump it Up
The size of your family, as well as the size and age of your septic tank, will determine how often you need to have your tank pumped. If you don't know when the last time a pumping was done, you should call your local health department, as most health departments keep records. Your health department may also require an inspection to be done every so often. If you find there are any issues with your septic system, call a septic maintenance service like A-1 Advanced Pumping Service Inc.