When the term additive is used, it generally refers to septic tank additives. Septic-Scrub does NOT fall into this category. Additives are used by many homeowners in order to help take a proactive role in maintaining their septic system. Some of these additives make claims as to eliminating or reducing the need to pump the septic tank and practicing good septic system management. NO additive should be used for these purposes.
In todays world, the increased use of bleach, bleaching agents added into detergents, antibiotics, and many other products can stress the septic system. The use of a high quality biological additive may help maintain the efficiency of the septic tank biological system.
Additives generally fall into two categories: chemical and biological. Chemical additives include both inorganic and organic products. Biological products include high quality products which are formulated with specialized bacteria and enzymes or low quality products which may not prove to be very beneficial.
Chemical products are not recommended as they may upset the balance in the septic tank and cause more harm than good for your system. Many of these types of products dissolve the fats and oils in the septic tank. If these materials are transferred from the septic tank they will increase the loading on the field and increase the possibility of drainfield failure.
Some biological additives are helpful to the operation of the septic tank and drainfield. These additives are specially formulated for this purpose and are available from your septic professional or a professional specialty store.
Many of these biological additives can help restore a failing drainfield if used after the Septic-Scrub treatments.
Many agencies and environmental protection departments do not recommend the use of septic tank additives. In many instances this is due to insufficient evidence for the benefits which they may provide. This can be due to the type of additive tested and to the claims made by some of the additive companies. Some general recommendations for the use of septic tank additives include:
- Acids and bases may cause sludge bulking and disrupt the biological activity of the septic tank. They may also carry over into the drainfield and change the soil characteristics in ways that can help cause drainfield failure.
- Enzymes only added to enhance septic tank performance without adding bacteria may instead add to the loading of the drainfield increasing the possibility of failure.
- The addition of yeast, dead cats, raw meat will have no worthwhile effect of the performance and may in fact decrease the performance of the system.
- The addition of organic solvent type products may be effective for removing grease from the internal house plumbing and the septic tank, but it transfers the oils and grease to the drainfield where there is an increase in the probability of drainfield failure and groundwater contamination.
- Most root killer products should not interfere with system performance if used as directed. Local regulations should be followed in the use of these types of products.