Weather in New England and Southeastern Massachusetts can be brutal and unpredictable especially in the winter. Maintaining your septic system is particularly important at this time of year. Winter is not the time to deal with a costly repair. Your way of life and habits can drastically affect your septic system for the good or the bad.
The Bathroom is the first place everyone thinks of when you talk septic system. One-ply toilet tissue is better than the thicker brands and flushing only toilet tissue down the toilet is a good rule of thumb. Flushing anything else can cause problems with your system. Making sure small children do not have access to the bathroom unattended can keep unwanted items from accidentally being flushed down the toilet.
Restricting the amount of water that goes into your system everyday can help extend the life of your system. Low-flow showerheads and taps, water-saving toilets, shorter shower time, fixing any leaky faucets, turning the faucet off while you brush your teeth, can all reduce the amount of water that goes into your system daily and give the system time to effectively work.
The kitchen is also an important area to be diligent. Solids should never be put down the drain. The more solids in your system, the harder it will have to work to break them down. Curbing the use of chemical cleaners, especially bleach will help keep the beneficial microbes that naturally occur in a septic system in place. These cleaners can kill off the good bacteria that help break up the waste in your system.
Composting can help. Setting up a bucket near the sink for food waste such as egg shells, fruit and vegetable peelings, coffee grinds etc. Then start a compost pile outside away from the septic system and periodically dump the bucket in this pile. It will break down over time and be great fertilizer for your vegetable or flower garden in the spring.
Also, keep a grease can in the fridge. An old coffee can is ideal. Keep straining your grease from cooking into the can and when it’s full, simply throw away and start with a new can.
These are some of the ways to keep your New England septic system up and running. For more information, visit www.allclearseptic.com for everything you need to know about septic system maintenance and troubleshooting. Call 508-763-4431.