If you just recently moved into or purchased your first home with a septic tank, you are going to need to start paying closer attention to what you put down your drains. There are numerous items that you should not put down your drains as your septic tank will have a hard type dealing with these materials. Here are the top four things you need to stop putting down your drains and into your septic tank right now.
#1 Vegetable & Fruit Peels
Although vegetable and fruit peels break down well when put inside of a compost pile, they do not break down well inside of septic tanks. When these items make their way into your septic tank, the fiber in the peels can easily clog up your drainage pipe and your septic system, and they tend to take a long time to break down when inside of your septic system.
Instead, put vegetable and fruit peels in the garage or in your compost pile.
#2 Cat Litter
If you own a cat are are used to flushing their litter down the toilet, you need to stop doing that right now. When you flush cat litter down the toilet, the material clumps together. It does not easily break up and can easily form clumps of cat litter inside of your drainage pipes and inside of your septic tank that block things up and do not break down easily. The very properties that make cat litter so effective can make it damaging to your septic tank.
Throw your cat litter into your trash can and save your septic tank.
#3 Paper Towels and Tissue
Not all paper is made the same way. Toilet paper is specifically designed so that it will break down inside of your septic tank. Although paper products may look and feel similar to toilet paper, they are not made to break down in the same manner. Paper based products like paper towels and tissues are constructed to be more absorbent than toilet paper and are specifically made so they don't break down when you are cleaning up messes or blowing your noise. The very properties that make these products great also cause them to take a really long time to break down. It is best to put these types of paper products in the trash instead of the toilet.
#4 Cotton Based Materials
Cotton materials are also not made for your toilet. Cotton materials that are often flushed down the toilet include items such as feminine products, cotton swabs and q-tips. These and all other cotton based materials need to be thrown away. Cotton based materials do not biodegrade and will just accumulate and fill up your septic tank. The only way cotton based materials are getting out of your septic tank is by having your septic tank cleaned out and drained by a company like Linn Septic Service.
Be careful about what you put down your drains; ideally only water, toilet paper and human waste should go down your drains and into your septic tank.
After dealing with a debilitating sewage flood a few years back, I decided to turn my attention to the proper care and maintenance of our septic tank. We had never spent much time trying to keep things in good shape, but we didn't want to deal with another sewage problem. To make things right, we met with the septic tank professionals and talked about how to keep our system in good shape. We worked hard to check for problems, and we called in the professionals at the first sign of trouble. Ever since then, we haven't had any issues. This blog is all about keeping your plumbing on point.