We get a lot of questions from our clients. One of the more common ones is, ‘how much bleach is too much for a Leesburg VA septic system?’ It’s a great question, so we decided to turn the answer into an article this month.
At first blush, the answer to the question ‘how much bleach is too much for a Leesburg VA septic system?’ would appear to be as little as possible. After all, bleach kills bacteria on contact. Your trusty septic tank relies on bacteria to do its job, so mixing the two would seem to be a disaster waiting to happen.
The reality though, is that bleach isn’t nearly as harmful as you might think. In fact, you’d have to buy a couple gallons of the stuff and pour it straight down the drain in order to do serious harm to your tank. As long as you don’t do something like that, you’ll be just fine.
That’s good news, because it means you don’t have to selectively shop to try and avoid bleach-based cleaning products. The small amounts of bleach you’ll introduce to the system by using them won’t be nearly enough to cause any harm.
Unfortunately, although the question, ‘how much bleach is too much for a Leesburg VA septic system?’ is a good one, spending too much time worrying over it or obsessing about it can pull your attention away from other dangers that are much more hazardous to your home’s septic system.
As hardy and robust as your septic tank is, there are things that can cause it serious harm, and much more easily than bleach can. Here are a few:
- Grease – Just about everyone knows that it’s not a good idea to pour grease down the drain, but unfortunately, it happens more often than most people will admit. The problem is that the grease winds up in your tank.
Some of it will stay there and build up over time, and some of it will escape into your drain field. Both are major problems, and the only way to keep it from happening is to have your tank pumped out at regular intervals.
You’ve probably seen late night infomercials advertising products that promise to break up the grease and remove it from your tank quickly and painlessly. Don’t believe it. Those products don’t work, and worse, many of them will harm the bacterial colonies your tank relies on to do its work.
- Chemical Drain Cleaners – While the answer to the question ‘how much bleach is too much for a Leesburg VA septic system?’ is measured in gallons, as little as a teaspoon of chemical drain cleaner can devastate the bacteria in your tank. These should be avoided at all costs.
- Excess Water – This one is a head-scratcher for many people. After all, your septic system is tied to your home’s plumbing, so at first glance, it would seem that water shouldn’t be an issue.
The problem here is that too much water supersaturates the soil in your drain field, which makes it process waste much less slowly.
Excess water can find its way into your drain field by one of two roads. Shutting both down is vitally important. First, check the downspouts attached to the gutters on your house to make sure they’re angled well away from your drain field. Second, any time you spot a dripping faucet or a toilet that won’t stop running, nip it in the bud as quickly as possible.
Again, it’s not that the question ‘how much bleach is too much for a Leesburg VA septic system?’ is a bad one. Just don’t let it pull your attention from the dangers we outlined above, because these things can do significant harm much more easily than bleach.
The best way to minimize risk to your home septic system is proper maintenance. Here, we have two recommendations: One, have your tank pumped out at regular intervals, and two, have your system inspected often.
We recommend having both done every three to five years, and we offer both services at reasonable rates. The biggest advantage of regular maintenance is that it allows us to put expert eyes on your system, which in turn, allows us to spot problems while they’re still small.
All things being equal, small problems are much easier and cheaper to fix than big ones are. That’s a big win for you, and gives you tremendous peace of mind, because the last thing in the world you want to deal with is a major problem with your septic system that results in the backflow of raw sewage inside your home. If you’ve never had to deal with that situation before, count yourself lucky. If you have, you know how much of a nightmare it can be.
You don’t want to trust the integrity of your home septic system to just anyone. You want the best, and in this area, that’s us. In the more than thirty years we’ve been in the business, we’ve grown to become the area’s top-rated septic service company, which is why so many of your friends and neighbors rely on us.
If you’re not sure when the last time your tank was pumped, or your system was inspected, it’s probably well past time. Give us a call today to schedule your appointment. You’ll be very glad you did.