You may not really put a lot of thought into the toilet paper you use, but if you rely on a septic system, you really should! Your septic tank should be pumped every 3 to 5 years depending on your family size and usage of the system. What determines how often you should pump is solely up to how you maintain your septic system. This includes what you are flushing and how often you get it inspected.
It is only logical the best toilet paper for septic tanks would be those that will dissolve rapidly into very small particles when introduced into the plumbing system. This is to minimize the space it will occupy once it reaches your septic tank. But there are other factors to consider, as well.
Understanding the Toilet Paper Journey
When you flush toilet paper down the toilet, it makes a short journey through your pipes and into your septic system. Toilet paper and other solid waste will remain inside of the septic tank while the water flows out into your drain field. Even though the toilet paper is out of sight, it does not just magically disappear. It will sit in your tank until it either dissolves or you have your septic tank pumped by professionals.
Remember, there is nothing in your septic tank to help the paper you flush break down more quickly other than the water and bacteria that break down solid waste. While all septic tanks need to be maintained with regular pumping, if you use toilet paper that breaks down easily and doesn’t take up a lot of space, your tank will not need to be pumped quite as often. So, if you want to keep your septic tank happy and functioning, we recommend that you stay away from the triple ply, ultra-thick, heavy duty toilet paper. Those varieties just are not good for your septic system.
What brand of toilet paper is best for septic tanks?
The best toilet paper for septic tanks will dissolve quickly in water, to reduce the amount of space it occupies in the tank. For this reason, the bulkier quilted versions may not be ideal for your tank. Look for toilet paper that is labeled as “septic system safe” or “biodegradable” for best results, since these versions are designed to break down quickly and not clog up your septic tank.
Just to name a few…
- Amazon Brand – Presto! Ultra Soft Tissue
- Scott Rapid-Dissolving Toilet Paper
- Angel Soft Toilet Paper
- Cottonelle Ultra ComfortCare Toilet Paper
Avoid the Luxurious Toilet Paper
If you rely on a septic system, you want to avoid brands that can hold together well. The greater the ply, the more it absorbs. If your toilet paper is absorbing lots of water, it is only decreasing the space you have available in your septic tank. Thicker toilet paper also has the potential to create blockages. Many of the emergency calls we get for septic tanks are due to toilet paper clogs. It is best to settle for single or double ply.
Avoid Other Paper Products
In the cases where toilet paper is not accessible, we have all been guilty of grabbing a couple of napkins or paper towels. Do not flush these products. Since paper breaks down by water, it may seem like it is safe to flush down your toilet. However, the only paper product that should ever be flushed down a toilet is toilet paper. Toilet paper is specifically manufactured to disintegrate in water, making it safe to flush through your plumbing and septic system.
Avoid Flushable Wipes
Flushable wipes are becoming increasingly popular each year. However, they often clog and backup sewage pipes. Some popular brands may argue that their wipes are flushable, promoting this convenience on their packaging. However, just because the wipes can pass through your toilet does not mean your septic tank is equipped to break them down. If you use wet wipes, you should throw them in the trash to avoid clogging and other problems.
Contact West Coast Sanitation Today
Be mindful of what you put down your drain or in your toilet. Depending on your household size and the size of your tank, it is a good idea to have your system pumped out every 2-3 years.
At West Coast Sanitation, we know that you don’t have time to deal with septic problems. If you think that your system has reached capacity, please give us a call at (951) 780-5922 right away. We have professionals ready to answer your questions and get your system working properly again.