When we typically think of stress we think of humans – we have a bad day or are dealing with a difficult situation and we become stressed. But mechanical systems that rely on different parts working together can become overloaded and stressed as well. Septic systems are included in systems that don’t function optimally under stress. When too much wastewater has been flushed into your drainfield, this can stress your system and cause backups. If you’re worried about stress on your septic system, here are a few tips to help you be proactive about making sure you’re not overloading your system.

Watch for symptoms of a stressed system.

Stressed septic systems don’t function optimally because there is constantly water sitting in the drainfield. Over time, the effluent in the water clogs the holes in the drainfield where water normally seeps through. When this happens, you’ll notice that your drains will start draining more slowly, will gurgle or water will come up through your drains. Another symptom of a stressed drainfield is standing water in the yard.

Be proactive about your water use.

In homes with septic systems you have to be very conscious of how you use your water. Running many loads of laundry while simultaneously doing the dishes or using the showers will overload your system. You need to make sure that you’re doing what you can to use less water and space out activities like dishes and laundry throughout the week to avoid putting too much stress on your system.

Be more conscious about water in general.

Water is a scarce resource and while we’re lucky to have clean water coming from multiple taps in our home – people in other countries aren’t as lucky. It’s important to keep water conservation in mind when we’re doing our household activities. We’ve written many different blogs on conserving water. Little things like switching to low flow toilets and more efficient appliances and showerheads are a great start. For a full list of water conservation suggestions, check out this article.

Schedule a septic inspection.

If you’re starting to worry about the state of your septic system, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Once you start to notice symptoms that your system is stressed, it may be beneficial to have an expert come out and complete an inspection. This will help you identify if there are drainfield issues that need to be addressed or if your system requires a pumpout. The information that you’ll get from an inspection is very valuable for future reference.

You have invested heavily into a home with a natural infrastructure that uses efficient natural processes to handle your wastewater. Make sure that you continue to make the required investment and take actions necessary to ensure the longevity of your system and avoid costly repairs.

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