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2 FAQs On Septic System Maintenance

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Your septic system is typically responsible for collecting all the wastewater that goes down the drains in your home if you aren't hooked up to a municipal sewer system. To keep the system in good working order, you should schedule regular septic system maintenance, which often includes tank cleaning and pumping, sewer line inspections, and drain field servicing. Apart from professional maintenance, there is a lot you can do to keep your septic system working as it should. Read on for 2 FAQs to guide you on proper septic system care.

Can septic tank additives make the system work better?

Typically, septic tank additives contain bacteria, enzymes, solvents, and chemicals that supposedly help break down waste from your home faster and reduce the need for regular septic tank cleaning and pumping. However, these additives may do more harm than good in a number of ways.

Firstly, the chemicals may cause an imbalance of the microorganisms in the aerobic environment of the septic tank, resulting in the poor breakup of solid wastes. This can lead to solids getting to the drain field where they can block the soil and cause a failure of the system.

Additives may also contain chemicals that emulsify grease and make it sink to the bottom of the tank instead of floating to the surface of the sludge. This can cause the tank to fill up more quickly and necessitate more regular pumping.

Finally, the enzymes and bacteria in the additives could cause increased biological activity in the tank, causing excessive gas buildup that slows down the breakdown of sludge and causes suspended materials to fill up the tank and clog the drain field.

Can excessive water use hurt the septic system? 

Excessive water use in the home is a leading cause of septic system issues, especially if you have a small tank. The injection of large volumes of water can also stir up sludge and flush out solids into the drain field. This can saturate the soil and cause flooding issues and horrible smells in your yard.

To prevent problems, be sure to wash full loads of clothing and to have leaking taps, showers, or toilets fixed immediately. You should also limit dishwasher use to full loads, have short showers rather than baths, and install water saver taps and showers. 

By keeping commercial septic tank additives out of your system and spreading your water use, you can keep your drain field and septic tank healthy and prevent most septic system problems.

For more information about how to use and care for your septic system, contact a professional contracting company, such as Lutzky Contracting.