Once the tank is buried and the toilets flush, it’s easy to forget about your friendly, handy septic system. It’s also tempting to think that, without much input from you, your septic system will remain healthy and operational for years to come.
While septic systems are traditionally reliable, responsible homeowners may take several reasonable precautions to maintain overall functionality. By extending the life of your septic system with these tips and tricks, you’ll be adding value to your current system and honoring the investment you’ve made in your home.
From basic drain etiquette to sustainable appliances and regular inspections, septic system care begins with you. By thinking before your flush, you could spare yourself some serious grief moving forward.
To Flush or Not To Flush
“Out of sight, out of mind,” the saying goes, but depending on what you’re pouring down drains or flushing down toilets, you may be creating problems rather than erasing them.
It’s worth remembering as a foundational truth that, “whatsoever goes down a drain or toilet winds up in the septic system.” As far as toilets go, you should reserve their use for human waste and toilet paper, nothing more.
Forget what you may have heard or how you may have used your toilet before. Non-flushable wipes, feminine hygiene products, contraceptives, floss, diapers, litter, and paper towels are all on the No Flush list. Likewise, chemical solutions and pharmaceuticals may require special disposal methods that are a far cry from the humble toilet bowl.
Drains are also misused for the disposal of cooking oil, grease, solvents, paints, and too-solid chunks of food waste left over by garbage disposals. Drain cleaning solutions may also harm the living bacteria in your septic system that assist with the digestion of legitimate household waste.
In truth, the trashcan is the proper home for many of the products we flush or pour into drains. For hazardous household waste (HHW) you can consult certain general guidelines here.
Consider Your Water Usage
Let’s face it, the advent of modern plumbing has spoiled us in more ways than one. We are resoundingly defensive about our showers/toilets/daily consumption, and we may be unprepared to admit a few uncomfortable truths about our relationship with water.
As with inappropriate waste down toilets and drains, all the water you use from day to day will end up in your septic system. The less water you consume, the lower the risk of failure and premature wear on your septic system.
The keyword here is “efficiency” as in “high-efficiency toilets” for starters. By simply replacing 3.5-5 gallon traditional toilets with modern 1.6 gallon toilets, you could be saving up to 3.4 gallons per flush, per day, per year. That’s some serious conservation right there.
High-efficiency showerheads aren’t to be feared. Modern advancements have made the fixture every bit as comforting and functional as its less-efficient ancestors without all the additional waste.
Smart appliances are great, but smart usage can also pay dividends. By selecting the appropriate load size on your washing machine, or compiling your laundry loads to make the most of a wash each week, you’ll be avoiding gallons and gallons of wasted water.
As with any major household investment, you’ll want to stay up to date with the functionality and overall health of your septic systems. A general rule of thumb encourages inspection every 3 years and pumping every 3-5 years based on tank size, household size, and wastewater generated, among other factors.
Your trusted septic service provider can help you keep tabs on your system and guide you to one or two monitoring practices you can perform on your own. No one benefits from sudden septic system failure or unexpected malfunctions, especially when they could sideline the comfortable use of your home for alarming periods of time.
Septic Knowledge is Septic Power
Economy Septic Tank Service in Central Alabama cares about your family’s home. By providing you with the services and knowledge you need to keep your septic system running smoothly, Economy Septic hopes to ensure the quality of your daily life.
For more tips and tricks, or to schedule and inspection/pumping, call Economy Septic today!
Septic tanks don’t have to be mystery! By taking some small steps and monitoring your usage, you can add years to the life of your indispensable septic system. The team members at Economy Septic Tank Service are fully licensed, bonded, and insured. For the best advice on septic system health, call us at (256) 435-1086 to schedule your service.