Don't Flush Your Money Down the Drain: Septic Do's and Don'ts

If you live in a home with a septic system, or are thinking about purchasing one, it's important to know how to properly care for it. Septic systems are designed to treat and remove wastewater from homes, but they can be easily damaged if not properly maintained. Here are some do's and don'ts for septic system care:


  • Have your septic tank pumped regularly. This will help to remove solids from the tank and prevent them from clogging the drain field. Most experts recommend having your tank pumped every two to five years, but it's important to check with your local septic system installer or service provider for their specific recommendations.
  • Dispose of waste properly. Only flush human waste and toilet paper (septic safe) down the toilet. Do not flush anything else, including feminine hygiene products, diapers, cat litter, wipes, or cooking grease. These items can clog your septic system and cause damage.
  • Use less water. The less water you use, the less strain you'll put on your septic system. Take shorter showers, fix any leaks in your plumbing, and only run the washing machine and dishwasher when they're full.
  • Plant grass over your drain field. Grass helps to filter the water that flows through your drain field and prevent erosion. Avoid planting trees or shrubs near your drain field, as their roots can damage the pipes.
  • Have your septic system inspected regularly. A professional septic system inspector can look for any signs of damage or problems and recommend any necessary repairs.
  • Use special detergent: Regular detergents can contain harsh chemicals that can damage your septic system. Septic-safe detergents are designed to be biodegradable and low in suds, which help to prevent clogs and other problems.


  • Do not overload your septic system. If you flush too much waste too quickly, it can overwhelm the system and cause backups or overflows.
  • Do not pour chemicals or hazardous materials down the drain. These chemicals can kill the beneficial bacteria in your septic tank and make it difficult for the system to function properly.
  • Do not drive or park on your septic tank or drain field. The weight of vehicles can damage the pipes and tanks.
  • Do not build anything over your septic tank or drain field. This can also damage the pipes and tanks.

Additional Tips

  • If you're planning on making any major changes to your home, such as adding a bathroom or a new kitchen, be sure to consult with a septic system expert to make sure the changes won't put too much strain on your system.
  • If you experience any problems with your septic system, such as backups, overflows, or foul odors, don't hesitate to call a professional septic system technician. Early detection and repair of problems can help to prevent more serious damage to your system.

By following these tips, you can help to keep your septic system healthy and functioning properly for many years to come.


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