WinterClosing a septic system for the winter is a vital task for seasonal homeowners to prolong the life of the system and to keep it operating at peak performance.
•If you are closing a cabin for the winter do not add automotive antifreeze, salts or any other additives to your plumbing.
•RV antifreeze can be added to traps in sinks, bathtub and shower drains, washtubs, floor drains and sump pumps.
•If you leave the water on for the winter, be very sure that there are no leaks or drips. This constant, low flow of water can cause septic system freezing.•If you have a high efficiency furnace that is left on for the winter, be sure there is no water drip into your system. Freezing can result. Re-route the drip water to a floor drain, bucket or other source that does not enter the septic system.•Do not plow snow off the area or store plowed snow over the drainfield.• Use water; the warmer the better if you feel the system is starting to freeze. The Onsite Sewage Treatment Program is usually an advocate of water conservation, but if freezing is a concern, increasing low use to a normal water use can help the system. This includes spreading out yourlaundry schedule to possibly doing one warm/hot load per day, using your dishwasher and maybe even taking a hot bath.• If you know you are going to be gone for an extended period, plan accordingly. This could include having someone use sufficient quantities of water in the home regularly.
SpringHere are some tips to get your septic system off to a good start for the coming summer.
• Watch the snow melt; if water is pooling over the tank or drainfield, channel it away.
• As the ground thaws, inspect the drainfield area for surfacing of sewage. Look for areas that staywet, have standing water, or areas where the grass is greening up earlier than other areas. Thesemay be signs of plugged or frozen piping
• If you have an effluent filter in your tank now is a good time to clean it
• Take a walk around your system. Are there water-seeking trees such as willows nearby? Their roots can extend out searching for available water, and may damage your septic tank. Remove these trees.
• When doing your spring cleaning, limit the amount of chemical products you use. Antibacterialand bleach cleansers can destroy the bacteria necessary for the septic tank.