Having a septic system in your yard is quite common if you do not live in an urban area, and a septic system will operate well for a very long time if you care for it properly. There are numerous ways to protect your system in order to keep it functioning well, but there are three main steps you should take that will help you avoid running into septic issues.
Use Caution with What You Put into the System
Septic systems are designed to break down human waste and filter through waste water. When water and waste are the only things entering a system, the system will typically function better. Because of this, you should use extreme caution with what you place in the system. For example, you should not throw things down your drains or into your toilets, such as cleaning supplies, coffee grounds, or grease. These items will clog the system, and you may encounter septic issues.
In addition, you should try cutting back on the amount of soap you use. Soap scum can also clog a septic system if there is too much of it. Using toilet paper is fine for a septic system, and today most brands are designed to degrade when placed in water. You should never throw paper towels in your toilets, though, or diapers or sanitary products. These items too will clog your system and cause problems.
Limit Your Garbage Disposal Use
A garbage disposal in a kitchen sink is a wonderful and handy device to have, but it is not the best thing for a septic system. In fact, a lot of septic companies may tell you to get rid of it or simply avoid using it. When you use a garbage disposal, you are placing food inside your drain. While the system grinds it up, the food particles still end up in your tank, and this turns into solids in your tank. This causes the tank to fill up faster, and you will need to get your tank pumped more frequently because of it.
If you want to avoid filling up your tank faster with food particles, use your garbage disposal sparingly. Scrape off plates and pans in your garbage can first or create a compost pile in your yard. After that, you could rinse the plates off and run the garbage disposal. This would leave a small amount of food in your disposal, but that is a lot better than placing all of your scraps in the device.
Spread Out Your Water Usage
The final tip to consider for septic maintenance is being cautious with your water usage. Many people do not realize that water use and habits can greatly impact the way a septic operates. When any water enters the drains in a house, the water will eventually end up in the septic tank. The tank is set up to sift through the water and solids, leaving the solids in the tank and filtering the water out.
A problem with this cycle can occur if you use too much water all at once. When this happens, the system cannot keep up, and this can lead to water in your yard. The best thing you can do is even out your water usage. For example, do not do five loads of laundry in one day. Instead, do one per day for five days. Another example is showering. If five people take showers every morning, it can overload the system. Instead, divide the showers between morning and night.
If you are interested in finding out other ways to keep your system in good condition, contact a septic maintenance company.