Where Responsible Septic Tank Ownership Starts
If your home sits on a septic system, there are certain responsibilities that come with it, and while some only affect your comfort or convenience, others affect a far wider sphere. Understanding this, and how your choices impact those around you, can help you make smarter choices about what you buy and how you use your home's waste water system.
The Importance of Regular Cleaning
Pumping the solids out of your septic tank ensures that it continues functioning normally, but it does far more as well. When solids build up in your septic tank, it's unable to properly pre-treat the waste water running through it, allowing untreated waste to seep out into your drainage field. There, the microbes responsible for second stage treatment aren't able to cope with the untreated waste, allowing that water to make its way into your local water table.
Regular clean-outs also prolong the life of your septic tank, removing contents that can degrade the structure of the tank more quickly. This will help stave off premature breaches, which would normally require you to replace the entire tank. Further, clearing your septic tank as directed by your septic system contractor will also prevent backflow issues and allow treated waste water to flow properly out of the tank.
Choosing the Right Products for Your Home
Basic cleaning and hygiene in a home on a septic tank will require a bit more care than normal as you choose products that will do the least harm to your septic system. Avoid things like anti-bacterial cleaners and products containing bleach, both of which will also impact the septic bacteria in your tank, causing a die-off and hindering regular waste processing. If you must use products containing anti-bacterial agents, avoid pouring them directly down your drains.
Remember also that chemicals like phosphorous can accelerate the growth of algae, even in a closed system like your septic tank. Phosphorous also won't be processed out by your system, and will bleed over into the local water table, leading to increases in algae blooms in your area, impacting wetland habitats that support fish and waterfowl.
Remember, your septic tank affects more than just your home, so make sure you take care of it and avoid making choices that will damage your tank or the surrounding environment. If you're not sure when you should next have your septic tank pumped, make sure to call a local contractor like one from Gordon's Septic & Water Services to have it inspected.