drain cleaner

Drain Cleaner and Onsite Systems Are a Bad Combination

drain cleanerPublished in Onsite Installer Magazine

Written by Sarah Heger

Chemicals used in many drain cleaners kill the essential bacteria needed by septic systems.

Septic systems rely on natural bacteria to treat wastewater. Harsh chemicals used in many drain cleaners kill the essential bacteria needed by septic systems.

Chemical drain cleaners are among the most dangerous of all cleaning products to human health. Most contain corrosive ingredients such as sulfuric acid, sodium hydroxide (lye) and sodium hypochlorite (bleach) that can permanently burn eyes and skin. Some can be fatal if ingested. Cleaning products are required by law to include label warnings if harmful ingredients are included which are:

Signal word Toxicity if swallowed, inhaled or absorbed through the skin
Caution One ounce to one pint may be harmful
Warning One teaspoon to one ounce may be harmful or fatal
Danger One taste to one teaspoon is fatal
Ideally, the products used on all our homes either have no warning or only a “Caution.”

In a study by Gross (1987), a lab study found significant decreases in concentrations of coliform bacteria at very low Drano concentrations. Just 0.1 mg of Drano per liter of septic tank effluent reduced the concentration of coliforms tenfold; 1.3 mg is enough to kill most bacteria, and at 3 mg/L they are destroyed. Three mg/L corresponds to 11.3 grams in a 1,000-gallon septic tank. Also, there was as a slight decrease in pH at higher concentrations of Drano. This amount could possibly be used by a homeowner in a short time period when unclogging a drain. The bacteria population recovers to its original concentration within 48 hours following the addition of the Drano.

Alternatives for customers
Prevent drains from becoming blocked in the first place by having really good catch basins in all drains from sinks, showers, tubs, laundry, etc. This is easily done with inexpensive metal or plastic drain screens. Large food scraps, along with fat, oils and grease should be collected and disposed of with the solid waste or composted when possible, and not dumped down the drain.

The most likely spot for a sink drain to clog is about 6 inches below the drain opening in the trap. If a clog occurs, many times the plumbing under a sink can be removed and manually cleaned. In other instances a plunger may also help to clear the obstruction or a drain auger or snake is used to manually remove the material causing the slow or blocked drain. If the blockage isn’t near enough to the sink to reach with a snake, look for other places to gain entry to the pipe. There should be clean-out ports that can be unscrewed to gain access to pipes for auguring. If it’s a tough hair or scale-type clog, it may be worth it to call in a professional with better equipment to handle those types of blockages.

As a last resort, chemical drain cleaners may be used, but they must be enzyme-based rather than caustic cleaners. Earth Friendly or Naturally Yours are two brands of enzyme-based drain cleaners. Homeowners can  make their own: Put 1/2 cup salt,  1/2 cup baking soda, 6 cups of vinegar down the drain.  Let stand for an hour or so & then pour kettle of boiling water down your  drain. This can be done every 6 months to a year.  It does no damage and can help to keep drains clear.

All Clear Septic and Wastewater Services can answer all your septic questions.  Call them at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

White Knight Septic System Services

Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services are carrying out White Knight Septic System Services in Rowley, Boxford, Groveland and Medford. We install the White Knight™ Microbial Inoculator/Generator in the septic tank to create an oxygen rich environment and cultivate an extensive colony of soil bacteria. In nature, oxygen-using (aerobic) bacteria in the soil consume non-living organic material. This is the process nature uses to “recycle” wastes and we just cultivate the same soil bacteria. The result is nearly complete consumption of the organic materials entering the septic tank. At the same time, the bacteria are carried into the leach field where they consume the organic material that has accumulated in the underlying soil. The leach field regains and/or maintains its capacity to deliver effluent to the soil for purification. For more information on this system or to schedule a Septic System Service please contact our office at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

Septic Preservation Services Provides Advice and Information

          Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services is here to provide advice and information to our customers to ensure that their Septic System is working correctly and will do so for many years to come. We don’t want to have to do costly septic repairs to your system when simple preventative measures can prevent this.

One of the main issues we encounter when customers have problems with their septic system is that their water usage is either too high or not consistent. Simple changes can help with this, for example, ensure that your dishwasher and washing machine is full before turning it on. Dual flush toilets and economical shower heads can also make a difference. It is also beneficial to not overload your system by running your dishwasher, washing machine and taking a shower at the same time. Also consider spreading your washing over the entire week rather than doing 3 or 4 loads on one day.

We recently had to do a Septic Repair in Cumberland, RI when some simple and often free and cost effective changes would have made this unnecessary. However even a correctly used and working Septic System will need Septic Cleaning and Septic Pumping on a regular basis. The regularity depends on various factors but it is recommended every 3 years. If you think you are due for some maintenance on your Septic System please contact our office for advice or to schedule an appointment at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

Septic Preservation Services on Cape Cod Today

           Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services have Septic System Services scheduled on Cape Cod today in Sandwich, Wellfleet, Eastham, Brewster, West Dennis, Dennis and Yarmouth. If you have a home or business on the Cape and need to schedule a service for your septic system call Septic Preservation Services. We are a reliable, thorough, and professional Septic Company who have experience working on Cape Cod, so please call our office to schedule your appointment or for more information at 877-378-4279 or visit


Septic Preservation Services

Happy Veterans Day from Septic Preservation Services

           Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services would like to wish or customers and friends a happy Veterans Day. In appreciation for all that Veterans have done for us we offer a Veterans discount to our Veteran customers. Septic Preservation Services offices are open on Veterans Day and our engineers will be out doing work for our customers including Septic Services, Septic Repairs and Septic Inspections in locations including Taunton, Sharon and Stoughton MA.

Please call us at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

Septic Preservation Services Conducting Septic Inspections

          Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services are conducting Septic Inspections in Falmouth, Westbrook, Gorham, Windham and Portland, ME today. If you are moving in Maine and require a septic inspection or need an inspection for your property, if it is residential or commercial, please contact our office so we can answer any questions and schedule your appointment.

You can reach us at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

Septic Preservation Services Schedule Singulair Services

           Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services have Singulair Services scheduled today in Little Compton, Portsmouth, and Jamestown, R.I.   Septic Preservation Services have extensive experience and expertise with Singulair Septic Systems so if you need a service on your Singulair septic system make sure you contact our office to schedule your appointment at 877-378-4279 or visit

good septic owner

Top 10 Ways to Be a Good Septic Owner

septic system tipsAccording to the EPA , here are the top 10 ways to be a good septic owner.

Have your system inspected every three years by a qualified professional or according to your state/ local health department’s recommendations.

Have your septic tank pumped, when necessary, generally every three to five years.

Avoid pouring harsh products (e.g., oils, grease, chemicals, paint, medications) down the drain.

Discard non-degradable products in the trash (e.g., floss, disposable wipes, cat litter) instead of flushing them.

Keep cars and heavy vehicles parked away from the drainfield and tank.

Repair leaks and use water efficient fixtures to avoid overloading the system.

Space out water usage throughout the week.  e.g. spread loads of laundry throughout the week  and avoid excessive washing on one particular day.

Maintain plants and vegetation near the system to ensure roots do not block drains.

Use soaps and detergents that are low-suds, biodegradable, and low- or phosphate-free.

Prevent system freezing during cold weather by inspecting and insulating vulnerable system parts (e.g., the inspection pipe and soil treatment area).

Another great idea,  call Septic Preservation Services and enroll in their maintenance program.  They can keep you on schedule with regular maintenance to keep your system functioning properly and avoid costly repairs.     You can reach them at 877-378-4279 or visit

Septic Preservation Services

Septic Preservation Services Reminds Everyone, It's Election Day

          Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services would like to remind everyone that it is general election day for our customers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine and New Hampshire.The politicians have been raising a stink for months but we hope that your Septic Systems have not been doing so in sympathy! If you are concerned that you may need a Septic Cleaning, Septic Pumping or Septic Inspection because your system is not operating correctly please do contact our office at 877-378-4279 or visit

All Clear Septic & Wastewater Services

Septic Preservation Services Plans Maintenance Schedules

             Septic Preservation Services Septic Preservation Services have services scheduled today in Hingham, East Bridgewater, Plymouth and Middleboro MA. These customers have 6 monthly services scheduled, so they no longer have to concern themselves with maintenance and remembering to schedule service for their septic system. We plan maintenance schedules for our customers based on their individual needs, schedules, and systems so we can tailor a service plan that works for you. We can provide Singulair Service, FAST Service, Advanced treatment unit service and sand filter services. To find out more information about the services we can provide for you please call our office at 877-378-4279 or visit