If you own a septic tank, you probably already know that you need to be careful about what gets flushed down the drain. Many chemicals can disrupt the balance inside your septic tank by killing beneficial bacteria that breaks down the sludge inside the tank. This means that anyone who relies on chemical drain cleaners to maintain good flow through their pipes would be best advised to find a new method. If you're a homeowner with a septic tank, the following tips will help you maintain your drains and protect your septic tank at the same time.
Vinegar and Boiling Water
Vinegar is naturally somewhat acidic, and it has cleaning properties that make it a very common natural household cleaner. When poured down a drain, vinegar helps flush out and eat away some of the debris that gets stored up inside drains, like hair. To do this, set a pot of water on the stove to boil. When the water is boiling, pour several cups of white vinegar down your drain and chase it with the boiling water. Repeat this on a regular basis for slow moving drains.
Baking Soda and Boiling Water
Baking soda is good for removing grease and sticky substances like melted cheese, and this is what makes it perfect for cleaning drains that are clogged with cooking grease or shampoo.
To do this, put on a pot of water to boil and generously drop several handfuls of baking soda into the drain. Pour the boiling water down into the drain with the baking soda. The baking soda may fizz up over the lip of the drain, but this won't be a problem. Let the fizz die down, then flush the drain with hot water from the tap.
You can add other steps to the above processes as needed. For example, pouring a cup of lemon juice into the drain after flushing it with boiling water will help remove unpleasant odors from the drain. Alternatively, you can also pour coarse salt down the drain and chase that salt with more boiling water. The salt is abrasive and will help flush away debris in the pipe.
The above tips can help if your drains are slow, but these methods are not powerful enough for drains that are completely clogged. If you have a drain that isn't flowing at all, its best to call for a drain repair service in your area. Your plumber can use an electric snake to open up the drain in a way that is safe for your septic tank.