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What Cleaning Products Can I Use on a Septic Tank?

This article discusses all the types of cleaning chemicals you can use around your house that will not damage your septic tank. Your septic tank turns your waste into sludge that may be treated in either your home water treatment plant, or by the company that empties your septic tank. Your tank will cease to function and may even become dangerous if you use certain types of cleaners and chemicals around the home.

Why Should I Avoid Certain Cleaning Products?

Your septic tank turns waste into a sort of slime where fats are on the top, and the muddy-looking sludge is on the bottom. Bacteria and microorganisms work their way through your solid waste to turn it into treatable slime. Certain chemicals and cleaning agents will kill these bacteria and microorganisms, which stops your tank from working and may even damage it.

Without the bacteria and microorganisms in your septic tank, you will not be able to run the slime through your water treatment plant because it will have solids in it. If you have your septic tank emptied, then a crust of solids will build up and eventually damage your tank or make it unusable.

Avoid Most Types of Drain Cleaner

One of the most powerful chemicals in any household is drain cleaner. Liquid drain cleaners are typically safe for septic systems, but you should check the label and/or the Internet to be sure. Foaming or solid drain cleaners can disable your septic tank and will probably cause damage. If one of your waste pipes are blocked, such as your kitchen sink, then strongly consider using boiling water and a Wastepipe Drain Blast Un-Blocker so that you avoid the chemical route altogether.

Do not attempt to clean your septic pipe or septic tank. Not only is this a very dangerous task to do because of all the bacteria, there are also different types of dangerous gasses that are released.

Septic Systems Can Handle Some Chemical Cleaning Products

Most cleaning products, including the ones you use on yourself while taking a bath, are alkaline, which is why they are bad for bacteria. However, human waste is typically acidic, so it chemically balances out in the end. The battle between acidic and alkaline waste is why your septic systems can handle some chemical cleaning products. Problems only arise when things swing too far down the alkaline route, which is typically due to a person's overuse of cleaning products, especially strong ones such as bleach. If a substance is harmful to humans, then it is probably harmful to the bacteria in your septic tank, and you need to keep your septic-tanks bacteria alive if you do not want a hardened-muck substance to cement itself into the bottom of your septic tank.

What Can I Use Around the House?

The majority of usual household cleaners are safe to use with septic systems in normal amounts, but for the best results, you should use septic-safe products as indicated on the label. Products containing bleach are safe for use with septic systems in small amounts, and mild detergents, such as laundry detergents, are generally safe for use in septic systems. Phosphate-free detergents that are low-sudsing are best. Avoid any chemicals where gloves are required for use. Cleaning products containing ammonia, as well as pure ammonia, are also safe for septic system use in small amounts. Many water-based cleaners, such as water-based carpet cleaners, tub and toilet cleaners, and disinfectants are safe for septic use.

What Else Shouldn’t You Do?

The microorganisms and bacteria in your septic tank may have the power to make you seriously ill, but they are not powerful enough to dissolve rags, disposable nappies, sanitary items, kitchen towels, condoms or cotton buds. Remember to bag them and bin them.

Opinion is divided on if you should dispose of grease, oil or fat into your septic tank because the bacteria can take care of it, but it takes so long for them to break it down that it often builds up and creates problems, so try to avoid flushing putting grease, oil or fat down your drains.

Never wash paint brushes or use brush-cleaning liquids in your sinks because they make your septic tank less efficient. Wash your paint brushes in a bucket, and then put kitty litter in the bucket and leave it until it becomes hard so that you may put it in the bin. Always strain and reuse paint thinner, remembering to seal it properly. Paint thinner sludge needs to go to the correct disposal facility, or you can burn it if you wish.

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Wednesday 20th October 2021
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