How Do Garbage Disposals Affect Your Septic System?
The garbage disposal is such a convenient tool when it’s time to clean up after dinner. Leftovers are simply washed down the drain and magically disappear. What a concept! Unfortunately, this convenience can be very costly if you own a septic system. New septic owners are often unaware of their garbage disposal’s effect on their wastewater system. After all, the garbage disposal grinds up everything making it safe, right? Not exactly.
Here’s What Happens
The garbage disposal does indeed chop up food into smaller pieces, but these particles will not break down in the septic tank. Unlike human waste, food scraps just build up in your tank and eventually flow out into your leach field. Once this happens, you start to develop clogs in your leach field, and this is a more difficult problem to solve.
What You Can Do
Instead of treating your garbage disposal like a trash compactor, throw your food scraps and other solid items in the trash. Consider feeding food scraps to your pet, and remember this rule: Items your pets cannot eat like grease, paper towels, cigarettes, coffee grounds, and paints do not belong in the garbage disposal either.
You might also ask a septic professional about installing a filter. This can be placed on the outlet line of your septic tank to block larger solids like food and garbage. That way, if someone accidentally puts a hazardous item down the drain, it will be caught before flowing into the leach field.
Can’t Live Without Your Garbage Disposal?
There are folks out there who do manage to use their garbage disposals in conjunction with their septic systems, but they have to have their tank pumped more often. Since you are allowing more solid waste into your septic tank, the sludge will build up faster. Allow one of our educated technicians to evaluate your system and household habits to determine the right maintenance plan for you. To learn more or to set up a service appointment, Contact Us today.
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