Why Toilet Paper Matters to Your Septic Tank

Most families swear by a particular toilet paper brand. Thick, plush tissue might feel good on your behind, but your septic tank may beg to differ. Unlike municipal wastewater systems, septic tanks and older pipes can’t handle every type of toilet paper. Follow this guide to help you shop for the right products and avoid septic backups.

Qualities of Septic-Safe Toilet Paper

If your home has a septic system, your best bet is to find toilet paper labeled “septic safe.” If you find a package you’re not sure about, consider these qualities of septic-safe toilet paper so you can flush with confidence.

  • One- or two-ply: If your toilet paper is too thick, it will settle at the bottom of the septic tank, where it takes longer to dissolve. That’s why most septic-safe toilet paper is single-ply, meaning it only has one layer of material. Two-ply options are also available if you prefer this for comfort reasons.
  • Rapidly dissolving: Even ordinary toilet tissue biodegrades relatively quickly, but rapidly dissolving products break up even faster. This is good news for your septic tank because such toilet paper is unlikely to cause a clog.
  • Recycled: Have you noticed that recycled toilet paper is brown instead of white? This is because it lacks chlorine bleach and other harsh chemicals found in standard toilet paper. Use 100% recycled toilet tissue to avoid disrupting the delicate balance of bacteria in your septic tank.
  • Sustainably sourced: If you strongly prefer non-recycled toilet paper, at least choose a brand that sources its ingredients responsibly. Grass and bamboo are excellent tree substitutes that are growing in popularity. Also, plant-based paper products are often all-natural, so they still lack the harmful chemicals you’re trying to avoid. Sustainable toilet tissue supports a healthy septic system and protects the environment, an equally important cause!

Toilet Use & Septic Systems

Toilets that connect to a municipal wastewater system can be flushed without much thought. However, septic systems have special requirements. Along with using the right toilet paper, flush wisely to help prevent backups.

  • Only flush septic-safe toilet paper and human waste.
  • Never dispose of liquid chemicals, such as paint, solvents, or degreasers down any drain.
  • Use toilet paper sparingly.
  • Dispose of feminine hygiene products, facial tissues, paper towels, and pet waste in the trash.
  • Install low-flow toilets and flush selectively. In other words, “If it’s yellow, let it mellow; if it’s brown, flush it down.”
  • Use all-natural, biodegradable toilet bowl cleaner.

For more help maintaining your septic system, turn to Trinity Liquid Waste. We are a family-owned business based in Pleasanton, CA with 25 years of experience servicing septic systems. We can answer questions about keeping your septic tank healthy and perform septic pumping, septic inspections, and septic repairs as needed. With 24-hour emergency service available, you can reach our team when you need us most! Contact us online or call 510-874-6489 to schedule septic services in the San Francisco Bay Area.