Things to Avoid with an On-Site Septic System
Plastic, rubber, scouring pads, dental floss, kitty litter, cigarette filters, bandages, hair, mop strings, lint, rags, cloth & towels do not degrade in an on-site treatment system. Inert materials will build up solids & lead to system malfunction, clogging or increased pump out frequency.
Disposable diapers, paper towels, baby wipes, facial tissues, toilet tissue that is lotioned, scented or quilted, moist towlettes, do not dissolve readily in an onsite treatment system. Excessive amounts of toilet tissue will also not decompose. All can lead to system malfunction, back-up or increased pump out frequency.
Do not put animal fats & bones, grease, coffee grounds, citrus & melon rinds, corn cobs, egg shells down the sink. Garbage disposal use should be limited to waste that cannot be scooped out & thrown in the trash. Spoiled dairy products & yeasts from home brewery or baking may cause excessive growth of microbes that do not degrade sewage.
Do not flush baby wipes, toilet paper that is lotioned, scented or quilted, female sanitary products, cotton balls, swabs or condoms. Antimicrobial soaps & automatic disinfection tablets (blue, clear or otherwise) may kill the organisms needed to consume waste.
Normal use of over the counter medications do not affect the performance of onsite systems. Do not flush expired medicines/antibiotics into an onsite treatment system. Some prescription medications are known to cause biological disrupt. Among these diseases or conditions are those suffering from bulimia, severe infections (including AIDS), chronic diarrhea, intestinal/colon by-pass or other gastrointestinal conditions & cancer. Oral or intravenous chemotherapy is known to cause severe disruption to the treatment process & will require more frequent pump out intervals or the use of biologically based additives.
There is no evidence to support the use of additives with normally functioning septic systems. Some septic tank additives have been shown to do more harm that good. A normally functioning system should not require additives.
Chemicals & Toxins:
These materials kill the microbes necessary for the biological treatment to occur. Paint, paint thinner, solvents, volatile substances, drain cleaners, automotive fluids, fuels, pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, metals, disinfectants, sanitizers, bleach, mop water, floor stripping wastes, excessive user of household chemicals & backwash from Water Softener regeneration.
On-site systems must process the water as it enters the system. Laundry should be spread out over the week, not all run at one time. Excessive use of detergents, especially those containing bleach, can affect system performance. Liquid detergents are recommended over powders. Fabric softener sheets are recommended over liquid softeners. Bleach should be used sparingly & at half the rate indicated on the container.
Clear Water Waste:
From A/C discharge lines, floor drains, gutters, whole house water treatment systems & sump pumps can increase the flow to your treatment system. These flows can at least disrupt, if not destroy your treatment process.