Do…

  • Inspect your tank for signs of sludge buildup and make sure the baffles are in working order.
  • Pump you tank as needed (every 2-3 years for year round residences and 4-5 years for seasonal residences), and keep a written record (ask about our complimentary homeowners guide) for yourself or future owner.
  • Compost food garbage or put it in the trash
  • Keep a grease can handy
  • Mark your septic system so you can protect it from vehicles and encroaching trees and shrubs
  • Divert excess water like roof drains and surface water away from your system
  • Conserve water; install water-saving devices, such as front-loading washers, low-flow faucets and shower heads, and wash clothes and dishes only when you have a full load and avoid several loads in one day.
  • Use non-toxic cleaning products such as baking soda to scrub toilets or boiling water to drains.
  • Plant shrubs, trees and grasses downhill from your system to act as a sponge (they will tie up excess nutrients and water as well as prevent soil erosion). Keep small trees and shrubs at least 10 feet away from your leach field and large trees at least 20 feet away.
  • Keep an “as built” drawing in a safe place for your records
  • Prevent heavy vehicles or livestock from the area over and around your system. If necessary, consider placing a fence or some other barricade around area to prevent damage. (field compaction)
  • Contact WSS if your septic system shows signs of failure or if others in your immediate area are suffering from malfunctioning septic systems
  • Use liquid detergents instead of powdered detergents

Don’t…

  • Use a garbage disposal – it adds 50% more solids to your system.
  • Pour automotive oil, cooking oil or grease down the drain
  • Drive vehicles over the septic system or leach field
  • Plant bushes or trees over the leach field
  • Install a in-ground or above ground pool near the drainage field
  • Dump recreational vehicle (RV) waste in to your tank. RV waste may also contain chemicals that are toxic or may hamper the biological activity in your system.
  • Use too much water, especially during rainy, wet seasons when the ground is saturated
  • Pour paint or paint thinner down your drain
  • Connect rain gutters or storm drains to the septic system or allow surface water to drain in to it.
  • Use drain cleaners and other toxic chemical products
  • Use chemical or biological septic cleaners which can plug up your leach fields and ruin your system.
  • Discharge water softener backwash in to the septic tank. The backwash brine contains high levels of chlorides that can destroy microorganisms
  • Flush feminine hygiene products, cat litter, disposable diapers or other non-biodegradable products in to your system
  • Flush medicines, particularly antibiotics
  • Use products labeled antibacterial
  • Flush paints varnishes thinners waste oils photographic solutions pesticides
  • Don’t ever enter a septic tank or breathe the toxic gas