Did you know that the dishwasher detergent you use can change the way your septic system works for the worse? It’s true! And it makes sense, if you consider that everything going down your drains, detergent included, ends up in your septic tank.
Here’s what you need to know to choose a septic-safe dishwasher detergent and keep your system running well.
How Does Dishwasher Detergent Affect Your Septic System?
Most dishwasher detergents smell nice and clean your dishes well, but they do that by containing chemicals that aren’t good for your septic system. That system relies on a specific set of bacteria that live in your septic tank. These bacteria break down much of the waste that ends up in your septic tank.
Without these key bacteria, your system can’t work as well. Your tank may fill up faster because solid waste won’t break down, or you may end up with algae living in your tank, which doesn’t help you at all.
Unfortunately, many of the chemical ingredients in dishwasher detergent kill off these vital bacteria. When you put these into your tank regularly, you risk major problems like breakdowns or tank replacement.
Which Detergents are Best for a Septic System?
There are a few things you should look for in a septic-safe detergent. The key ingredient to avoid is any type of phosphate. These work with other ingredients in the soap to form an acid, which is highly effective at removing grease and grime from dishes. However, this acid also kills off the bacteria you need in your septic tank.
You should also look for detergents that are low-sudsing, plant-based, and that are biodegradable. That way your septic tank will be able to break them down without a problem and they won’t become part of a mass or clog that causes significant problems.
Most septic-safe detergents are labeled as such. You may have to try several before you find one that is good for your system and cleans the way you want it to.
Septic System Experts
If you have any more questions about dishwasher detergent and your septic system or if you are having septic problems, call us at Wilson Services today!