A septic system and a municipal sewer system are designed to do the same thing—remove waste from homes. While both types of waste management systems are effective, having a septic tank requires a bit more maintenance than a plumbing system that is connected to a municipal sewer system. If you have never lived in a house with a septic tank before, there may be a slight learning curve as you get used to maintaining a septic system. Use the following tips to ensure that you do not encounter any problems with your septic system:

Pay Attention to What is Flushed

When you have a septic system, the only things that should be flushed down the toilet is waste and toilet paper. Ideally, you should purchase toilet paper that is specifically designed to be used with a septic system, as it is more likely to break down when wet and not cause clogs. Avoid flushing paper towels, feminine hygiene products, and baby wipes, as all of these things can clog a septic system and cause a back up.

Avoid Sending Excessive Amounts of Chemicals Down the Drain

A septic tank has a delicate balance of bacteria, which helps break down solid waste inside the tank. This bacteria is very important for the health of a septic system and for maintaining waste levels. If an excessive amount of household chemicals, such as bleach, detergents, or strong household cleaners, are poured down the drain, they can kill off the good bacteria in the septic tank.

Dispose of Grease Properly

Never dispose of cooking grease or other fats by pouring them down the drain if you have a septic system. Grease and fats do not break down properly, and they can create a thick sludge inside your pipes that can result in a back up. It is best to collect cooking grease and fats in a container and then throw it out with your trash.

Have Regular Inspections

Septic systems need to be inspected on a regular basis by a professional. It is much better to find out that there is a small problem that needs to be repaired as opposed to having the whole septic tank fail entirely because it has not been properly maintained. Inspections are also important so you know what the waste level is—if a septic system inspector tells you it is time for your septic tank to be cleaned, don't wait. Failure to have your septic tank pumped in a timely manner can lead to a disgusting, smelly sewage back up. If your septic system needs to be serviced, contact a company like Walters Environmental Services.