Septic tank blockages can cause serious problems if left untreated. These problems can usually be avoided if taking the proper precautions in advance with your septic tank. We’ve compiled a list of our top tips for preventing septic tank blockages below.

Schedule regular maintenance checks

The best way to prevent serious septic tank issues is to schedule regular maintenance checks with a qualified professional. A full maintenance check should be carried out at least once every two years. A routine maintenance check will also inspect other elements of the system such as outlets, inlets, distribution boxes and percolators, which can also cause problems within a septic tank system. Even after taking all the preventative measures for septic tank blockages, a maintenance check can detect smaller problems before they amount into much larger ones, which can often be very costly.

Know what you can and can’t flush/ wash down the drain

A common cause of septic tank blockages is flushing the wrong things down your sink and toilet. Items such as sanitary products, cigarette butts, latex gloves, coffee grounds and cat litter are all common culprits of septic tank blockages. Even smaller things such as hair and tiny bits of food can build up and cause serious issues. A way to prevent this is to use plugholes and shower grates in sinks and showers in order to stop the substances from entering the drains. Our septic tanks and covid-19 blog details this further.

Grease can also cause septic tank blockages when washed down the sink, as the grease forms into solid lumps when it has cooled that can block the drainage system over time. For this reason, grease-stained utensils should be scraped off thoroughly before being washed in the sink.

It is also important to know that chemicals such as gasoline, paint thinner and varnish should not be flushed down the drain either as they can disturb the septic tank’s bacterial equilibrium, which means that solids inside the system would be unable to be broken down. This can cause serious clogging problems for your septic tank and would require costly repairs.

Avoid using large amounts of water at one time

A regular septic tank does not have the capacity to handle large influxes of water coming through its system, which is why caution must be taken when using large amounts of water. Unusually large inflows of water can cause the drain field to become waterlogged and slow down wastewater absorption, resulting in septic tank blockages. Appliances such as hot tubs and jacuzzis can cause this problem. Staggering showers and dishwasher uses throughout the day can also resolve this issue.

Don’t plant trees near the septic tank

A final tip for preventing septic tank blockages is to avoid planting trees close to the tank. Tree roots have the ability to grow under and beside septic tanks, causing them to become dislodged and disturbed, resulting in blockage and overflow. Because there is no way of predicting which directions tree roots will grow in, it is best to avoid planting them near to septic tank systems entirely! We have also prepared an article on what to do if your septic tank is leaking, which can be caused by this disruption also.

Septic Tanks with Carlow Tanks

If you require further information about septic tank maintenance or installation then contact us here at Carlow Concrete Tanks on 059 9159100 or email us at