If you have a septic system, all of the wastewater that your household produces will make its way to your septic tank. If too much water is sent to your tank, or if you put things down the drains that you shouldn't—like grease—you could damage your septic system. Here are three kitchen tips for maintaining your septic system.
Don't use your sink as a garbage can
Pouring waste like cooking grease down the sink may be convenient, but this can cause problems for your septic system. The grease is liquid when it's hot, but once it reaches your septic tank and cools down, it will solidify, which can lead to clogs.
If your kitchen sink has a garbage disposal unit, use it as infrequently as possible. It's fine to grind up small pieces of food that you rinsed off of your plates, but you shouldn't use it to dispose of larger kitchen waste like egg shells or vegetable peelings. If you use your garbage disposal unit regularly, your septic tank will need to be pumped more often, and the food can even interfere with the treatment of your wastewater.
Avoid using chemical drain cleaners
If your kitchen sink gets clogged with food waste or grease, it may be tempting to use a chemical drain cleaner to quickly fix the problem. However, drain cleaners are very corrosive, and they can damage your septic system. This can happen if you use too much of the product or if the product builds up in the plumbing.
Drain cleaner can also interfere with your septic tank's wastewater treatment process. The bacteria within your septic tank are responsible for breaking down the solid parts of your waste, and if these bacteria are killed, this process will be halted. It can take more than two days for these essential bacteria to return.
To avoid problems, choose drain cleaning methods that won't harm your septic system, like drain snakes.
Reduce your water usage
Between your sink and your dishwasher, you use a lot of water in your kitchen, and all of that water needs to be treated by your septic system. If you produce too much water, the soil around your septic system can be saturated, and this can shorten your system's life or allow untreated waste to contaminate the surrounding area.
Check your kitchen faucet to make sure that it's not leaking. Even small leaks add up to a lot of wasted water over the course of a day, and this can overload your septic system. Make sure your dishwasher is completely full before running it; running multiple smaller loads wastes water.
To keep your septic system in good condition, follow these maintenance steps in the kitchen. For more information, contact companies like George W Shepard & Son Inc.