If you have a septic tank, you may have wondered if you need to add anything to it to make it function better or keep it operating at peak efficiency. However, while some of these additives may sound amazing, the truth is that they’re really not needed. As long as you have regular septic tank maintenance performed by an experienced company, you don’t need to add anything to your septic tank. Studies have actually indicated that some additives actually do damage to the septic tank, the drain field, and the surrounding soil and water. Therefore possibly requiring septic tank repair services in the future.
What Do Additives Do?
What additives say they do and what they actually do may not always be the same thing. The companies that make these products, after all, want to sell as many of them as they can, so they often stretch the truth as far as they can. They say that additives extend the amount of time you can go between having your scheduled septic tank pumping. The way they make this claim depends on the type of additive.
Some additives contain enzymes and bacteria. The companies that make these biological additives say that their products boost your tank’s efficiency or help overworked septic systems keep up. What they don’t say is that the bacteria found in your septic tank doesn’t need any boosting or extra help. It functions just fine without any additives. If your septic system is overworked because the tank is too small or you’re adding too much to it on a daily basis, no additive is going to help. Your choices are to either get a larger tank or reduce the amount of waste you’re putting into your system.
The other type of additive uses inorganic compounds and organic solvents. These are harsh chemicals and acids that can be used to break down drain clogs, grease, and oil. However, these chemicals can also destroy the helpful bacteria in your septic tank that breaks down solid waste and can even eat through the pipes and the tank itself. Without this good bacteria, your septic tank will no longer function correctly. The chemicals in these products may also get into the soil and water of the drain field and contaminate it.
Are Additives Ever Useful?
There are a few situations where biological additives can be helpful, such as when a septic tank hasn’t been used for some time. Those who maintain a second home that is only used during the winter months, for example, may need to add some biological additives since the tank isn’t getting bacteria from wastewater on a daily basis. If you buy a home that has sat empty for several months, you might also need to consider additives.
However, you want to avoid any additive that includes harsh chemicals and other ingredients that can damage your system. If you believe your septic tank might need additives, call us. We can inspect your system and help you determine what, if any, additives are necessary.
No Additives Can Replace Regular Maintenance
Despite what they claim, no additive is going to prevent your septic tank from filling up over time. That’s what it’s designed to do, and when it does, it has to be pumped. Nothing can replace the regular inspection and maintenance that your septic system needs.
The best way to keep your septic tank functioning correctly and avoid costly repairs is to have it inspected once a year, have it pumped on a regular scheduled determined by the tank size and amount of water used daily, and watch what you put down the drain.
Need an Inspection or Tank Pumping?
Septic Masters, LLC, is here to provide all of your septic system maintenance. If your tank needs to be inspected or pumped, give us a call today.