If you’ve ever owned an older home, you know how difficult the septic systems can be. Older homes mean older septic tanks and we soon found ourselves dealing with clogs, backed-up toilets, and bad odors near the drains. Septic pumping was a huge help but we wanted to make sure the problems didn’t come back. It turns out we were doing all the wrong things inside our home! There are several household appliances that are terrible for your septic tank. They use up too much household water (putting pressure onto the tank) or clog up the drains and pipes. We can’t get rid of all our appliances but we can cut down on some things. Here are top three worst household items for your septic system:
- The toilets. The toilet itself doesn’t cause problems with your septic system. It’s really what ends up getting flushed down the toilet. Clogged or backed up toilets is the number one reason for homeowners calling in professionals for septic pumping. Never use your toilet like a garbage can. Flushing a wad of paper towel, a diaper, cat litter, food, or debris down the toilet can cause you serious problems. Toilet paper has been specially made to break down in water and something like paper towels, sanitary napkins, tampons, or diapers are not made with the same materials. Flushing items other than toilet paper down your toilet will result in serious clogging and back-ups.
- Your garbage disposal. A kitchen garbage disposal is so bad for your drains and septic system that many professionals suggest you disable it. Though the purpose of a garbage disposal is to chop up food and trash before going down the drain, it is a major source of clogs because the bacteria in the septic system can’t break down the food particles. If they build up, there will be back-ups in your home.
- Chemical cleaners. This one is always a shock to people. Bleach and harsh chemical cleaners can actually destroy your septic system. Putting these chemicals down your drain can cause serious damage to the septic tank by killing off all the good bacteria. This means the waste can’t be broken down and it ends up clogging up the drain. This leads to back-ups which causes leaking and foul sewage odors.