Things You Should Not Flush Down The Septic Tank

A clean, well-maintained septic system allows for less repairs and a longer service life. Septic tank maintenance is not just about having it routinely pumped and cleaned. It also includes managing what you flush and put down the drain. 

To help you take care of your septic tank, here’s what you shouldn’t flush down the pipes to avoid clogging and drainage problems in the future.

Flushable products

Many items are marketed as “flushable”, so it might be surprising to learn that actually flushing them down the toilet isn’t recommended at all. These items are usually made of nonbiodegradable materials that could hurt your septic system. Products like disposable wipes, disposable nappies, sanitary pads and tampons, cigarette butts, dental floss and coffee grounds can easily cause clogs and sewage backups since they’re solid items that take a long time to decompose. 


Septic tanks break down solid wastes for easy drainage, relying on bacteria to speed up the decomposition. Medicinal products like antibiotics can kill off those bacteria, slowing down the breakdown process. Dispose of your medicine some other way; your local pharmacist may have some recommendations on how to do it safely. 

Cooking oil

It’s tempting to pour down used cooking oil down the sink. But when oil solidifies, it can get caught in the drain lines and build up, creating a sticky trap for other materials passing through. This can lead to clogging, and in extreme cases, it may even damage the septic system. Fats and grease should not be flushed down for the same reason.

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