Septic Do's and Don'ts
DO’S AND DON’TS OF PROPER MAINTANENCE
- Have the system inspected by a qualified service provider to determine if the septic tank needs to be pumped. Pumping frequency can vary depending on use of the septic system. Inadequate pumping will result in excessive accumulation of solids that can be carried over causing clogging of the system.
(How often your tank will need pumping depends largely on the size of the tank, the number of people in the household and the wastewater flows generated by the household. The best procedure is to inspect your tank every year and have it pumped as necessary.)
- Do keep an “as built” septic system diagram in a safe place for reference. This diagram will help to locate components of your septic system.
- Do keep traffic such as vehicles, heavy equipment or livestock away from your septic system and repair area. If necessary consider putting up a fence, hedge, or other barricade to prevent damage.
- Do practice water conservation and balance your water use throughout the week. Wash clothes and dishes only when you have a full load. When possible, avoid several loads in one day. Repair leaky fixtures immediately.
5. Do take immediate action to correct problems when they arise. Contact a qualified professional.
- Don’t flush trash or chemicals. Cleaners, solvents, oils and other chemicals can kill the natural microorganisms that treat your wastewater.
- Don’t use the garbage disposal excessively. Compost scraps or dispose of with your trash.
- Don’t pour grease down your drain. Collect it in a container and dispose of it in the trash
- Don’t use special additives that are touted to enhance the performance of your septic tank. Additives do not improve the performance of the septic tank and, may in fact, damage your system. The natural microorganisms that grow in your system generate their own enzymes that are sufficient for breaking down and digesting nutrients in the wastewater.
- Don’t discharge water softener backwash into the septic tank. The backwash brine contains high levels of chlorides that can destroy microorganisms.
- Don’t dump recreational vehicle (RV) waste into your septic tank. The system is designed for your residence flow and may not be able to handle the extra solids load. RV waste may also contain chemicals that are toxic or may hamper the biological activity in your system.
- Don’t ever connect rain gutters or storm drains to the septic system or allow surface water to drain into it.
8. Don’t plant trees or other water loving deep rooting plants in the septic system area.