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How To Extend The Life Of Your Septic System

by Harry Martin

A septic tank can last for an average of 25-40 years. If you want yours to last for closer to 40 years, there are some things you can do.  Here are some tips to extend the life of your septic tank, and to make it need to be cleaned out less frequently.

Know your system: The first step in caring for your septic system is knowing what it needs. All systems are different and require different things. You should know the basics of your septic system, where it is, how many gallons it holds, when it was last flushed, and how often it needs to be flushed. If you don't know any of this, it is a good idea to talk to a professional, like those at Country Pump Out, and get his or her recommendations. This will save you money in the long run and will prevent damage to your system or your property that can come from septic tank overflow. Keep track of what your septic system needs, and stick to a schedule. Simply remembering to perform the recommended cleanings and maintenance will make a huge difference in the life of your system.

Be Careful What You Flush: You should not flush anything down your toilet (or other drains) that is not biodegradable. Non-biodegradable waste will build up in your tank and could clog either the building drain, the drain field, or the ejector pump. Some examples of non-biodegradable things that should never be flushed are diapers, condoms, kitty litter, dryer sheets, and cotton swabs. You should also never flush chemicals such as photo chemicals, paint thinner, pesticides, or varnishes. Oil (such as used motor oil or unused cooking oil) can also clog drains and build up in septic systems.

Garbage Disposals: Using your kitchen garbage disposal increases the amount of solid waste that is put into your septic system. Even if the food particles themselves are not damaging to your septic system, the increased solid waste may mean you need to have your septic tank pumped more often. You should be very careful about the types of things you put down your garbage disposal. Throw things in the garbage whenever it is convenient, rather than sending them down the drain. Be sure to never put oils or grease in your disposal because they can cause a buildup around the inside of your pipes. You should also not put things that will not readily break down in your septic tank (such as eggshells or kitty litter) down your disposal.

Use Less Water: The more water you use, the more of a strain it puts on your septic system. Think about changing your habits to send less water down your drain. Purchase water-saving appliances can also lighten your septic system's load.

A little care and effort in using your septic system can make a huge difference in its life span!