7 Septic Maintenance Tips

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

7 Septic Tank Tips

Septic systems are essential parts of our homes. They collect waste from toilets, sinks, showers, and other fixtures and then release it into the ground. The system also helps prevent water pollution. Septic systems are often overlooked because they don’t seem to cause problems until something goes wrong.
That’s why it’s important to take care of them properly. If you want to ensure a healthy septic system, follow these maintenance tips. 

How the Septic System Works

A septic system consists of two main parts: the tank and the drainfield. Wastewater flows into the tank, then separates into layers of scum and sludge. The sludge sinks while the scum floats to the top. Water moves through the tank and out into the drainfield.
Bacteria eat the scum and sludge, inhibiting them from building up. Pumping the tank should happen every three to five years to prevent the scum and sludge layers from getting too big.

A septic system is a vital part of any house, however, most homeowners don't know how to maintain them properly. Septic tanks should be treated as a vital part of a house. Care and periodic maintenance of the system are crucial because repair work can be expensive. Replacement of the entire system may cost $3,000-$10,000 or more, whereas regular maintenance will save money over time.

1. Pump out the septic tank

Septic tanks are used for sewage disposal. They work by allowing water to flow through them and then into the ground, where it eventually drains away. If you don't pump out your septic tank regularly, it will fill up with waste and become full.
When this happens, the waste will start to break down and release harmful chemicals into the soil or groundwater. These chemicals can be dangerous if they enter the drinking water supply. Pumping out the tank helps prevent these problems from occurring.

2. Use a water-efficient toilet

Water-efficient toilets use less than 1.6 gallons per flush (GFP), while conventional toilets use 2 GFP or more. Using an efficient toilet not only will lower your water bill, but also prevent too much wastewater from flowing into your septic tank and drainfield.

3. Treat garbage disposals wisely

Garbage disposals should be used only for soft foods. Avoid putting starchy, fibrous, hard, or greasy materials and overloading the garbage disposal, as it could cause the solid waste to clog up your sewer line and overflow onto the ground. Also, don’t put anything too large down there! Consider composting, which is a great way to recycle organic food scraps.

4. Use septic-safe toilet paper

Regular toilet paper, facial tissue, and paper toilets can clog up your septic tank. Switch to septic-safe toilet paper and avoid flushing paper products that aren't designed for septic systems to keep everything running smoothly. 

5. Properly dispose of toxic materials

Products that contain hazardous chemicals shouldn't be poured down sinks or toilets. Instead, these products should be disposed of correctly by following the instructions on the label. Local laws may also dictate how these products must be disposed of.

6. Divert rainwater from the drainfield

Rainwater from gutters shouldn’t drain into the drainfield because it’ll make the soil too soggy to filter liquid waste. Prevent your drainfield from becoming oversaturated with water by having the landscape and gutters lead rainwater away from the drainfield area.

7. Be careful with water treatment systems

Many homeowners use a water softener to decrease the hardness of tap water, but it can damage a septic system by releasing too much salt into the tank. This can cause problems with the system’s soil dispersal process. Before installing a water softener, contact a plumber to discuss drain-routing options.

Find Septic Services Near You

A septic system is a complex piece of equipment that requires regular maintenance to avoid an overflow or backup of sewage into your home. That’s why it’s crucial to find experienced and friendly technicians for septic services like maintenance, pumping, and inspections. Check out the don'ts of septic maintenance to develop even better septic habits.
Honey-Wagon is a family-owned company that has been helping Kansas City homeowners maintain their septic systems since 1986. Get an estimate for septic services to keep your system healthy!
Staff 4/5/2022