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Your septic tanks maintenance relies on natural processes to break down organic solids until they are safe to release into the soil (and thus the groundwater). Naturally occurring bacteria in your tank are primarily responsible for doing the heavy lifting here. When the processed liquid (called effluent) is released into the drain field, other natural and physical processes break down remaining organic matter from there.\n\n

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one in five american homes runs on a septic tank

One in five American homes runs on a septic tank instead of a community sewer line.

Is your home one of them? If so, there are several things you need to know about how to keep

your septic system running smoothly.

Today we’ll be looking at the simple step of using an enzyme formula to keep the good bacteria

after doing the septic system clean in your tank working well!

Why your septic system needs good bacteria

Your septic tanks maintenance relies on natural processes to break down organic solids until

they are safe to release into the soil (and thus the groundwater). Naturally occurring bacteria in

your tank are primarily responsible for doing the heavy lifting here. When the processed liquid

(called effluent) is released into the drain field, other natural and physical processes break down

remaining organic matter from there.

Unfortunately, certain substances can actually kill the beneficial bacteria in your tank if put down

your drain. This is why you should avoid putting paints, pesticides, chlorine (such as from a pool

or hot tub), medications, or automotive fluids down any drain in your home.

Be especially careful with household cleaners designed to kill bacteria, such as bleach, Lysol,

hydrogen peroxide, and even de-cloggers such as Drano. Not only do they kill the much-needed

bacteria in your septic tanks installation, but they can also contaminate your community’s

groundwater.

how enzymes and other additives can help

How enzymes and other additives can help

If you’ve accidentally killed off the bacteria in your septic tank, or if an inspection reveals that

your tank isn’t breaking down solids the way it should, it may be time to give the remaining

bacteria a helping hand.

Enzymes designed specifically for septic tank systems aid bacteria by helping to break down

organic solids on the molecular level. These smaller molecules are easier for the bacteria to

“digest,” making them work more efficiently. In a healthy tank, the bacteria will produce these

enzymes on their own, but in a compromised tank supplying extra enzymes can give the bacteria

a needed boost. These septic tank boosters may be in the form of a flush-able packet or liquid.

Other enzyme mixes may also contain nutrients to help feed the bacteria, while others contain

some of the beneficial bacteria themselves, which can help replace those that may have been

inadvertently killed off by something put down your drain.

Other vital septic maintenance

Even a septic systems cleaning with a thriving ecosystem won’t completely break down all

organic solids at the bottom of your septic tank. Meanwhile, fats, oils, and greases that go down

your drains will form a floating layer of scum at the top that can’t decompose. Unless these are

physically removed at some point, the sludge at the bottom and/or the oils at the top will

eventually overflow your tank and escape into

eventually overflow your tank and escape into the drainfield—with very unpleasant (and

unsanitary!) results.

If it’s been a few years since you’ve had your septic tank pumped, or if you’ve recently moved

to your home and don’t know the state of your septic tank, you’ll want to get it inspected to

determine how much longer you can go before pumping.

Generally it’s best to have it inspected annually—just to rule out other problems that could cause

major headaches down the road.

Also be sure to pay careful attention to the do’s and don’ts of owning a septic system, including

being very careful about not putting fats, grease, oils, “disposable” wipes, or dental floss down

any drain in your home.

Do you suspect your septic tank may be having issues? The technicians at Fred Lewis Septic’s

Plumbing can come take a look and help you determine the next step.