Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
Is Vim cleaner safe for septic systems?
It is extremely difficult to find the "truth' in advertizing, product ingredient labels, etc. I tried various online search methods and could not find one clear statement about a VIM product and possible septic tank problems. A big problem with product and ingredient consumer labels is that there is essentially no government or "watch-dog" agency policing what manufacturers claim about their products. A very good example is a product label stating it is made from 98% "natural" ingredients. Many "natural ingredients" can be (and often are!) just water; so a product can be 98% "natural water" and 2% terrible and/or worthless ingredients.
Also, there are many products in the market that claim "natural" and "no animal testing". People believe and buy a product assuming no animal testing. However, these companies are simply stating their version of truth in advertizing, that they do not test on animals.
However, they are quite free to purchase a needed ingredient from a company that does test on animals as there is no other way to obtain it. The company can then claim "no animal testing" on it's product labels.
Re your specific septic tank question. I recommend you contact the company that services your tank for their input. Just because a product contains "natural, basic, essential, etc.," ingredients does not mean it will not damage something it is used in, on, with, etc. Caveat emptor!
Can anyone tell me if I am correct in thinking that you are not supposed to use biological washing powder if you have a septic tank? Does its use upset the system?
By C Dobinson from Devon, England
A biological detergent is a laundry detergent that contains enzymes. The description is commonly used in the United Kingdom, where other washing detergents are described as "non-biological". The terms are sometimes abbreviated to bio and "non-bio".
The purposes of the enzymes is to break down protein, starches and fat that may be found in dirt and stains upon clothing to be laundered, for example food stains, sweat or mud.
Some people may be allergic to the enzymes. The selling point of non-biological detergents is that they are gentler, causing less irritation to skin ("kinder on the skin") and less damage to the fabric. Some studies refute the claim that non-biological detergents are gentler.
We were on a septic system for years and never really had any problems with laundry detergent clogging it up.
I would advise using a liquid laundry detergent instead of a powder.
Here's a website, see if you can buy this septic system treatment in England.
The bio detergent is just food for the septic tank bacteria. They love it. It's the non-bio detergents and solvents that you should avoid. If you accidentally murder your septic tank, you can usually quite easily re-start it by diluting the solvents with a few bath tubs worth of water and then flushing some organic non-pasteurized yoghurt and some moldy bread,
similar to re-starting the beneficial bacteria in your intestines after anti-biotics or chemo-therapy.
Have fun! DearWebby http://webby.com/humor
I believe its safer for the septic system than regular detergent. REgular detergent interferes with the ecosystem in the tank and kills off the natural bacteria.
Should I use an Oxygen Powder in my toilets if I have a septic system?
By Barb from Jackson, NJ
You can safely use most cleaners in a septic. Its when you over use them that you get problems. Read the product label and it will tell you. You are using a fraction of the cleaner, which will be diluted by several hundred gallons when it reaches the septic tank.
If you have a septic system the thing you need to worry about is not flushing anything but scott toilet paper down You can clean with any toilet cleaner
What can I use to clean the toilet tanks? Right now they look black stained. I recently put in a water filtration system and expected to see clear water in my toilet tanks. Instead whenever I open the toilet tanks it is all black. I have a septic system, so I don't want to use anything that will cause a problem with the septic system. Any help would be appreciated.
By Fran Rizzelli from Brookfield, MA
The water that comes into the house is dispersed to all outlets, the sink, shower, toilet. If the water is not black in the kitchen or bathroom sinks then I don't think the water in the toilet tank is black either. When I took the top of the toilet tank off my tank to insulate the inside of the tank I also noticed black mold on the walls which made the water look black.
I took the tank off the toilet, took it outside and cleaned the tank with bleach. I then insulated the inside of the tank and replaced the tank. If you think the water is black and not from mold on the inside of the tank I suggest you scoop out a glass of water from the tank and hold it up to the light and see what the color of the water or when you flush the toilet look and see if the water is black or clear.
You can use "The Works" which is septic safe and does a great job!
I bought a house in the boondocks, with private water and septic. What are the dos and don'ts? I love bleach as a disinfectant, is it okay to use?
Septic tanks function with bacteria, clorox bleach can destroy the bacterial action required, especially if you use a lot of bleach in your laundry.
I would suggest that you dig a hole for a separate "dry well" for your washer. My husband used two 55 gal. plastic drums on a bed of gravel, open ends together and put a cinder block inside to keep dirt from caving in drums when covered over. Drill large holes in the drum for the water to flow out. You will have to run a PVC stand pipe for washer hose and PVC pipe to "dry well" drum. Good Luck! The hardest part is digging the hole. This has worked well for us for many, many years.
Ms. Syd Barr - Dunkirk, MD
this past week-end my septic backed up, i've had the house for 4 years, the previous owner said it had only been 5 years since it was pumped, but the septic tank guy said it had to be much earlier since it was only me and my husband who live here it would'nt be that full that soon!
anyway, he and the plumber both said .ridx and other similar products don't work, that once a month flush a pack of Fleischman's Yeast down your toilet even if you have more than one toilet just flush it down one of them this wil help your pipes and your septic tank. also to only use 1 ply toilet paper, 2 ply does'nt disenegrate well and you can block up your pipes more, and don't flush tampons or napkins either, i always inform any ladies who are guest of my house to dispose of another way, they understand the reason and have no problem with my request.
Is Ivory liquid and bar soap septic safe?
Well I have been using bar soap, liquid dishwashing soap and Cascade for my dishwasher and Tide soap for my clothes washer with my septic system for almost 30 years with no problems.
Is Poly-Zag toilet bowl cleaner safe for private septic systems?
By Fran from Fairbanks, AK
I have a septic tank, is Snobol safe to use in septic tanks?
Is the homemade laundry soap made with the recipe given in this site safe for septic tanks?
By dolly ann
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
We have a septic tank . The problem we have is the stains that are in the toilet bowls. We have to be very careful what we use to clean with due to the septic tank. Any solutions on how to clean without harming the septic tank?
Betty from Missouri Valley, IA
We also have a septic tank, so we use a very small amount of Lime-Away on a green Scotch-Brite pad and the stains scrub off pretty easily. We've tried using baking soda, but it doesn't work as well as the Lime-Away does with our hard water. Your water might be different. Good Luck. (10/27/2008)
By Theresa from CO
By Carol in PA
I have had a septic tank for almost 9 years, and I use plenty of detergents, bleach and other cleaners. I've never had a problem with my septic system. We do put in the additive stuff that you buy to keep the system working. We've never had a backup or a field line problem at all. (10/28/2008)
I also have a septic tank, and to top it off, water that has high iron content. I had very bad stains. I found a miracle in the cleaner section of Walmart not too long ago. Bathroom Stone. This is not a cleaner, but a stone that looks and feels like pumice, but it's not. It's completely environmentally safe, and chemical free, and I swear by it. I promise you won't go back to chemicals and elbow grease. This is even better than baking soda, Comet, bleach, you-name-it. In case you're wondering, I don't work for this company. (10/30/2008)
By Penni from Hillsborough, NC
All that you need to be concerned about is "killing" the good bacteria in your septic. We have lived with ours for over 15 years. Once a month I put 3 packages of yeast, yes, powdered yeast down the toilet. It helps keep the good things doing what they're supposed to. We have only had to have ours cleaned out once and had no other problems. Don't spend the money on Rid. Just buy yeast. (11/18/2008)
A pumice stick available at hardware stores and cheap will do the trick, with no chemicals unless you count elbow grease. (11/25/2008)