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5 Household Products that Are Bad for Your Septic

Cleaning Products

Your septic system is probably not at the top of your mind when going about your day around the house. In fact, we usually don’t pay them too much thought while we’re disposing of common household products. This can quickly lead to trouble as there are certain products that may seem innocent to you, but can wreak havoc on your septic system, costing you a lot more than the product did! Here is a list of five familiar products that could actually be harming your septic.

Ammonia & Bleach

While ammonia and bleach are great for getting your bathroom clean or removing stains from your clothes, a large amount can cause serious damage to your pipes and septic system. This is because due to bleach’s antibacterial properties, it can suppress the bacteria that break down solids in your septic tank. If you’re particularly crafty, you could try an all-natural homemade bleach alternative, like ones that mix hydrogen peroxide, lemon juice, baking soda, and water.

Laundry Detergent

The detergent used to wash clothes typically contains contaminants like phosphates and surfactants, which makes it great for cleaning, but bad for your septic. When used too often it can soak into your drain field and contaminate your drinking water. It is important to remember that detergent is more concentrated than soap, so a little goes a long way. New plant-based detergents are becoming more popular and accessible in stores, so consider a product swap the next time you run out.

Drain Cleaner

Ironically, drain cleaner isn’t all that great for your drain. If you’re using it weekly to treat clogs, then you may want to contact a professional alto target the source of the problem. Using drain cleaner too often can drastically affect your septic system from working properly. Pro tip: When a small amount is paired with water, it becomes too diluted to harm the good bacteria in your septic. Or try a homemade remedy of baking soda paired with vinegar or lemon juice as an alternative.

Cooking Grease

With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, you’ll probably be spending some time in the kitchen. Trust us when we say you do not want to dump all that cooking grease down the sink. In fact, even oils from animal fat like turkey and bacon can solidify in the tank and clog your pipes. We suggest freezing the grease first and then throwing the solidified form into the trash.

Cat Litter

You may love your kitten, but your septic system isn’t as fond! If the litter is made from clay, then it can also clog your pipes. Once clay mixes with water and dries again it can solidify and stop the flow of solids to your septic. Be wary of litter advertised as flushable. Better to be safe and simply dispose of it in the trash. If you find your septic system is not working properly due to hazardous products, give us a call at (603) 945-7355 or fill out our online form. We can get it working properly and give you advice on how to prevent these issues in the future.

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