Keep Your Septic Tank Working This Winter

Posted on

Good septic tank maintenance is always necessary to keep your system in top condition, but if you live in an area where the winter is frigid, you may need to do more than have your tank pumped. In some areas, your septic tank can actually freeze, causing your sewage to back up into your home, a nasty and expensive situation. Before the weather turns cold, take steps now to keep this problem from occurring.


Insulating your septic tank may sound odd, but doing so can save you a great deal of trouble when temperatures go south. You can buy a cover for this purpose, but it's not necessary. You can simply put several layers of mulch over the top of the tank. Another option is to stop mowing over the tank late in the summer or in early fall. The grass itself will help keep your tank from freezing, even in its dormant state. You may not like the look of this method, but it is an effective and free option. When it does snow, leave the accumulation on top of the septic tank to serve as another effective and natural insulator.

Water Use

Experts warn against running water constantly during frigid periods in order to fend off freezing. Too much water can overwhelm your septic system and cause it to fail. However, washing one load of clothes in hot water each day can go a long way to keeping things flowing as they should. If you have to be gone for a few days, ask a friend or neighbor to come over and run the water for a bit to keep things from freezing up.


Although anti-freeze sounds like a good idea to prevent septic tank freezing, it is not. Chemicals such as anti-freeze can harm the bacteria in your system that is necessary to break down waste. You may be trading one problem for a bigger one if you add this chemical to your system. The other methods for protecting your septic tank in winter should suffice to protect you from a sewage disaster.

You do need to take a few precautions each fall to prepare your septic tank for frigid weather. None of these methods will cost you much in time or money, but they can prevent a winter nightmare for you this year. Insulate and monitor your water usage, and things should flow smoothly throughout the coldest months.

For more information or assistance, contact companies like Rob's Septic Tanks Inc.