Unless you want to make friends with your septic maintenance company let’s talk about some guidelines for maintenance for your conventional septic systems.
First and foremost the tank should be pumped and cleaned every 3 to 5 years, depending on the size and usage of the system. The purpose of the tank is to separate the solids from the liquids. The solids need to be removed periodically to prevent them from entering the drain fields which can lead to system failure and expensive repairs. When a garbage disposal is used, more frequent cleaning will be required. The accumulated solids must be pumped out by a registered and licensed septic tank service company and disposed of in a manner approved by EPA and TCEQ.
The EPA and TCEQ do not recommend using any additives. Additives are not necessary for a septic tank to operate. Some additives may even harm the system’s operation by liquefying the sludge in the tank and carrying it out into the drain field, causing system failure. Natural bacteria are present in the waste water to decompose the waste.
A septic system should not be treated as a city sewer! Economy in the use of water helps prevent overloading of a septic system that could shorten the life of the system and necessitate expensive repairs. Leaky faucets, running commodes and malfunctioning water softeners should be carefully guarded against.
Now I know I have your attention….but wait there’s more!
Items flushed down the commode do not disappear; they must be treated by the septic system. Septic systems are designed to treat waste water and toilet paper. Things that harm your system include: excessive use of garbage disposal, grease, too many cleaners, too much fabric softener, cigarette butts, diapers, wipes, feminine products, q-tips, unused medicines, etc….sounds like not only toddlers flush things but we are all guilty.
There is nothing worse than having company over for dinner or the weekend and the septic backs up….it happens to the best of us. If you can follow some of these guidelines you should have no worries and a sound system.