One of the best holiday traditions is packing up your car or boarding a flight to visit your family to celebrate. Or, if you’re the host, having your loved ones descend on your home in droves! It’s a lot of fun. However, it also means you must be extra careful with your septic system.
Since it’s designed to be used by a set amount of people, having all those extra folks in your home can cause it to become overworked, leading to a breakdown.
So below, we’ve put together a list of recommendations to help you avoid problems this Holiday! And you’ll notice a common theme with all our tips: it’s crucial you avoid overloading your septic system with water all at once!
We recommend this to avoid backups and effluent clogging your drain field, among other issues.
1. Avoid your garbage disposal. For now!
With the holidays comes lots of cooking, which comes with tons of food scraps. To prevent clogs in your pipes from this excess, we recommend you put ALL scraps in the garbage. You can resume your normal routine once your loved ones head home!
2. Fill up your dishwasher before you run it.
It is inevitable: You’re going to deal with a mountain of dishes! So instead of running your dishwasher back to back, we recommend filling it all the way up before you press “wash”. We also recommend running it when no one’s in the shower.
3. Say what can and cannot go in the toilet.
There are a host of things that should never be flushed into a septic tank: tissues, disposable wipes, paper towels, tampons, floss, etc. Since you own a septic system, you about these things; however, your guests may not!
If you don’t feel comfortable conversing with them about how to use the bathroom, which is totally understandable, you can place a sign with rules on it in your bathroom. Humorous and/or cheerful signs are great for communicating this awkward message!
4. Do your laundry on a schedule.
While you’re hosting loved ones, we recommend doing your laundry at these times: 1. days before your guests arrive, 2. when no one’s showering or using your dishwasher, or 3. avoid running any loads until after everyone heads home!
5. Shower on a schedule.
We suggest having everyone choose a time they prefer to shower: A good rule of thumb is to have some folks shower in the morning and others at night!
6. Rope off your drain field.
We suggest roping off or telling your guests not to park on your drain field. Parking in this area can result in serious damage to your system and decrease the effectiveness of your drain field.
7. Watch for bad signs.
Before your guests arrive and while they’re with you, watch for shower or bathtub drains that are draining slowly. Watch for water that drains from one appliance into another. See if your drain field fills with stagnant or unmoving water. Listen for gurgling noises in your pipes. Watch for toilets and sinks that backup. And see if your yard begins to smell like sewage.
If you observe any of the things above, have a septic technician come and repair your system!
8. Schedule maintenance!
If your system is older or hasn’t been looked at in a while, putting extra stress on it can aggravate some of its hidden problems. In other words, you could have a disaster waiting to happen and not know it. If you can, schedule maintenance before Christmas; technicians tend to be very busy when it’s time for trees and lights to go up! Need maintenance or repair before all your guests arrive for joyous festivities? Then contact the company that NorthWest Arkansas relies on, BBB Septic and Portable Toilets! You get in touch with us by clicking here.