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How Lower Temperatures Impact Bacteria in Your Septic Tank

It’s easy to forget that your septic tank is filled with live bacteria. In fact, these microbes are the reason why septic systems work so well for getting rid of waste. It’s essential to understand how this bacteria functions in order to have your septic system run at peak performance. 

Keeping an eye on your septic system is a good idea year-round. However, the cold winter weather affects your septic tank’s bacteria differently than during warmer months.

Here is how lower temperatures impact the bacteria in your septic tank.

Basics of Septic Tank Bacteria 

To understand why low temperatures affect septic tank bacteria, it’s crucial to know how your septic tank works. When waste enters the tank from your home, it naturally separates the solids and liquid. The solids sink to the bottom of the tank, as the liquid passes through to the leaching field and into the soil. The bacteria then helps break down the solids that remain.

Why is this important? Without bacteria, the solids would overwhelm the tank, leaving little room for liquids. A situation like this has the potential to create numerous problems. Not only does this create slow drainage and possibly backup into your home, but it could also ruin your drainfield. This is one of the reasons we suggest pumping your septic tank every couple of years.

How Does Temperature Impact Bacteria?

Ever notice how the ground is much harder than usual in freezing temperatures? Your septic tank—and what’s inside of it—is also impacted by the elements. These low temperatures have a negative impact on the bacteria’s effectiveness. Cold weather during the winter months slows down the bacteria’s ability to break down solids, which increases the risk of a full septic tank. 

With the importance of the bacteria in the tank established and the impact that weather has on it, the question becomes: how should you take care of your septic tank? In lieu of controlling the temperature in your septic tank, adding septic system additives is the recommended way to combat the freezing winter weather.

The process couldn’t be simpler. Purchase additives from a septic service provider and pour the bottle down the drain, most people use a sink. Wind River Environmental also offers the aptly named Boost which, when applied by a Wind River Environmental technician after a pumping, helps strengthen the bacteria in the septic tank.

This winter, consider using septic system additives to your system to help your septic system run at full efficiency. Wind River Environmental is here to keep your home’s septic system healthy. With coverage across 16 states on the east coast, the helpful team of operators and technicians are here to help with anything. If you’re in need of any septic system services, don’t hesitate to contact us today!

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