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Tips to avoid crappy septic situations! (pun totally intended)


Regularly inspect and maintain your septic system

Routine maintenance can lengthen the life of your septic system. Contact a certified On-site System Maintainer to inspect and monitor your system with the frequency that your septic system needs:

  • Gravity systems: Every three years

  • Pressure Distribution systems: Annually

  • Proprietary system such as an aerobic treatment unit (ATU), membrane bioreactor (MBR), drip irrigation, and other products: Annually, or more often if required by the manufacturer

  • Mound or sand filter systems: Annually

Pump your septic tank as needed

How often you pump depends on the amount of water use in your household or business. As a rule of thumb, the more people who use your septic system, the greater your water flow. This means your septic tank will fill up faster and will require more frequent pumping

Keep septic tank lids easily accessible

Have "risers" installed to make septic tank pumping and monitoring visits easier, cheaper, and less time-consuming. A "riser" also makes pumping and monitoring cause less mess and disruption in your yard


Flush anything except toilet paper into your septic system

Do not flush cleaning wipes, baby wipes, facial tissue, personal care products, or paper towels. Even wipes that are labeled flushable or septic safe belong in the trash can.

Put household chemicals down the drain

Chemicals destroy bacteria in your system that are necessary to break down solids.

  • Call the Environmental Field Office Toll Free at 1-888-891-TDEC (8332) to ask about chemical disposal.

  • Long-term use of medications, such as antibiotics, may also destroy important bacteria in your septic tank and drainfield.


Use septic tank additives

These products may be harmful by adding extra solids to the system that can clog your drainfield. The chemicals can also pollute groundwater and surface water.


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