It’s been a long day at work, and you’re ready to relax. You light a few candles, grab a glass of wine or some tea, fill up the bath, and pop in a bath bomb. Sounds great, right?
While it does help you unwind, it may be causing more stress for your septic system. Depending on what type and frequency, bath bombs and septic systems don’t get along. But why is that? And does that mean the end of bath bombs and bath salts for septic tank owners?
How Your Septic System Works
Let’s go over your septic system and waste treatment process.
After going down the drain, the waste and wastewater go into your septic tank. Once there, the solids and liquids separate, forming layers (think onions). The wastewater and liquids stay towards the top, eventually moving out to the drain field and filtering back into the groundwater.
The solids stay in the tank, where naturally occurring bacteria work hard to break down the solid waste as much as they can before the solids settle and join the sludge layer. Over time that sludge layer builds until a septic tank pump-out (occurring every three to five years) removes the layer.
But what if things aren’t working efficiently in your septic tank?
Whether there is too much water in the system or the bacteria are unhealthy and can’t keep up, when your septic tank becomes inefficient, it causes things like backups, pushes water before its initial treatment into the drain field, or releases too much water and overloads your drain field.
When your septic tank isn’t healthy, it can cause big problems. This is where the bath bombs can cause problems for your septic system.
What’s in a Bath Bomb?
Bath bombs are all about the scent and fizz. While their ingredients vary, most come with some solids, oils, and fats. These can take the form of flowers hidden inside, perfumes, and body butters – all designed to help you relax and leave the bath with smooth, hydrated skin.
Additionally, many get their fizzy show with a combination of baking soda and citric acid.
While we love these ingredients, your septic tank doesn’t.
Bath Bombs and Septic Systems – Friends or Foes
Used too frequently or incorrectly, and bath bombs and septic systems don’t get along. Let’s dive deeper into the ingredients of a bath bomb to learn why they can potentially cause harm to your septic tank.
Oils and Fats
Surprise! Oils and fats have no place in your septic tank.
Many bath bombs contain things like shea butter, cocoa butter, coconut oils, and perfume oils. These combine to form a hybrid layer that floats instead of sinks like the other solids. This means that as the wastewater leaves the septic tank, so does this lipid layer.
Oils and fats are not treated using natural processes in your leach field, meaning they stay in your pipes or top layer. Over time, this build-up forms clogs and backups in your system, leading to costly repairs as it becomes a full-on blockage.
Your septic system is only designed to process waste solids. When things like glitter or flowers make their way down your drain into your tank, they become part of the sludge layer without any chance of being broken down. They may seem like small things, but these unbreakable solids add to the sludge layer over time and cause back-ups and premature pump-outs.
Using Bath Bombs and Bath Salts Correctly Can Save Your Septic System
While they aren’t best friends, bath bombs and septic systems can get along — if used correctly.
If you want to continue with your relaxing baths, one of the best things you can do is reduce the frequency you use bath bombs. If you can’t stop the habit, consider using bath salts in place of the bath bombs. When using bath salts, make sure that the salts completely dissolve before draining the tub to reduce their impact on the bacteria balance in your septic tank.
Use the recommended amount of both bombs and salts. Keep the potency as low as possible, mixing the appropriate amount with the amount of water in your bathtub.
Central Florida Septic Maintenance and Septic Repair
Having a septic tank doesn’t mean the end of your baths and aromatherapy. Bath bombs and septic systems can get along if you do not overuse and follow proper protocols.
Notice that your baths may be taking a toll on your septic system? Contact Advanced Septic Services of Florida today! We offer reliable septic repair and maintenance in the Central Florida and Lake County area.