We have lived with a septic system for over 20 years. We’ve had to
have it pumped once in that time, with 5 people. Some simple
precautions and a little preventative maintenance will go a long ways
towards a healthy system.
You are no longer on a public sewer system. Everything you put down
it remains there and will leach into the surrounding soil. Uhm, when
they do pump the tank, it’s then spread on your fields, btw. Any
solids put down must be able to break down into organic components
which will not be toxic. Solids which don’t break down easily in
water, such as sanitary supplies and cigarette butts, shouldn’t be put
into the system. Compost most solid organic solids, such as food
scraps, rather than using the food disposal. If you use a food
disposal, set it up on a gray water system with a French drain. That’s
Use bleach sparingly, and when you do use it frequently, make sure
you use a bacteria and/or enzyme replacement, such as Rid-X, vinegar
and yeast. Bleach destroys the bacteria and enzymes which are
necessary to break down the solids. Ammonia is fine. Sparex is fine,
just neutralize it and dilute it with plenty of water so it won’t eat
your pipes on the way down. Liver of sulfur is no problem, but follow
it with plenty of water so it’s not trapped in the pipes to give you
the wonderful outhouse perfume. Other chemicals such as acids and
salts should not be disposed in the septic system, but take the same
precautionary methods as you would in town. Contact your local waste
facility for proper disposal methods.
You mentioned using a sediment trap. Make sure it’s the kind which is
easily removed, because you could be doing it once a week. LOS likes
to stick to solids.
You might want to check out a publishing company called Rodale Press.
They publish lots of practical back-to-nature pamphlets and books.
Lots of useful info for those who never had to live in the back waters
and don’t know how to do lots of things our ancestors did before we
Hope this is helpful. Welcome to country living. Ha-ha-ha-ha! P.S.
You’ll understand the laughter better after you’ve lived there for a