Owning a Septic Tank in Olympia, WA

by | Sep 18, 2013 | Septic Tanks

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If you have recently moved into a house that has a Septic Tank Olympia WA, you may be unfamiliar with this device and what it does. If you are not connected to the city’s sewer system, you still need a way to get rid of waste water, and a septic system takes care of that for you. It’s a large tank buried in the yard. It may be made of steel or concrete, and it may hold anywhere from 500 to 1,200 gallons.

Waste water from the house enters the tank, where it forms three layers of aqueous materials. There is a scum layer on top, which is made up of lighter weight materials that can float, and a sludge layer at the bottom of the tank, which is comprised of heavier waste material. Bacteria and chemicals in the middle layer, made up mostly of water, help to break down solids. Once solids are broken down, water leaves the tank through the opposite end and runs out into the underground drain field.

In order to keep your septic tank in Olympia from becoming clogged, everything that isn’t bio-degradable should go into the trash. Be sure that you don’t flush anything but water, wastes, and toilet paper. Don’t flush diapers, feminine products, paper towels, cigarettes, or disposable bath and kitchen cleaning wipes. Don’t pour coffee grounds or grease down the kitchen sink. Use hair traps in the shower drain. In the bathtub, when you remove the plug to drain in, put the hair trap over the drain. Don’t pour chemicals, paints, or automotive fluids or oils down any sink or into the toilet.

If you were used to having one big laundry day, in which you did a laundry marathon of load after load, it would be better to do a load here and there throughout the week instead. The septic system can’t handle too much water flowing into it all in one day, as it overwhelms the drain field. If you have certain loads that need bleach, limit those loads to one day each week. Bleach kills off the good bacteria in the septic tank that are needed to break down wastes. Just one cup of bleach in a tank that holds 1,000 gallons will destroy that good bacteria for up to three days.

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