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5 Septic System Dos and Don'ts

Septic systems are very expensive to repair or replace. Practice these septic-smart tips to ensure the longevity and proper functioning of your system.


  • Do ensure that your septic tank lid is sturdy and free of any cracks. We recommend using a plastic safety lid that is properly secured with screws.
  • Do keep your septic tank cover accessible for inspections and pumping. Install risers if your septic tank covers are buried underground.
  • Do conserve water to avoid overloading the system. Upgrade old fixtures and repair leaky faucets and toilets.
  • Do have your septic tank routinely pumped out by a licensed pumper.
  • Do have your septic system and tank inspected every 1 to 3 years by a Pennsylvania Septage Management Association certified inspector.


  • Don't make repairs or changes to your septic system without consulting a certified professional and obtaining any required permits.
  • Don't drive or park a vehicle over any part of the system including the septic tank or the drain field.
  • Don't let anything other than grass grow over or near the drain field. Roots from shrubs or trees may clog and damage the drain lines.
  • Don't flush non-biodegradable items, unused medicines, or harsh chemicals and cleansers down your toilet. Items such as cigarette butts, paper towels, and disposable diapers can clog your system while medicines and chemicals can kill the beneficial bacteria that treat your wastewater.
  • Don't go down into a septic tank!

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