If you don't have access to a municipal or county system, you probably have to use a septic tank to deal with your home's waste. If you want your septic tank to work effectively and to last as long as possible, you need to properly maintain it. Below are some tips you can follow that will help you keep your septic tank in perfect shape.
Pump out the Tank
You should have someone pump out your septic tank at least once every five years. You will want to do it more often than this if your system gets a lot of use. Make sure that when a contractor, such as Hemley's Septic Tank Cleaning, cleans your tank, it is done through the manhole located at the top of the tank, rather than through the tank's inspection ports.
Compost Your Kitchen Scraps
If you have a disposal in your kitchen grinding up your kitchen scraps, this can lead to a buildup of grease and vegetable solids in the line (and in your tank) that will ultimately cause you big problems. Instead of using a disposal, compost your kitchen scraps. This will not only help protect your septic tank, it will give you nourishing compost for your garden. In addition, avoid pouring kitchen grease (such as deep fryer oil or bacon fat) down the drain.
Install Low Water Usage Fixtures
Install showerheads, faucets, toilets and dishwashers that are designed to use less water than standard models. You can purchase low flow showerheads, faucets and toilets at most home improvement or plumbing stores, while many appliance stores now offer water saving appliances. By doing this, you can reduce the amount of water your septic system has to handle by thousands of gallons each year.
Add a Septic Tank Outlet Filter
Usually costing around $200, this is a device designed to filter out small particles, hair and other lightweight solids so they cannot reach the septic tank. Some are even able to remove grease suspended in the water.
Avoid Letting Chemicals into the System
Many of the chemicals that are flushed down the toilet or washed down the drain, such as cleaners or bleach, can lead to toxic substances building up in the drain field in your yard. In addition, chemicals like these (or acid-based compounds) can also kill off the microorganisms your septic tank system uses to treat the wastewater. Keep in mind, it is not necessary to pour additives into your septic tank system. In fact, these additives can often cause you problems, such as forcing solids out of the tank and clogging up your drain field.