There are a few different types of septic tank additives in San Francisco, and they may be added to a septic system for a number of reasons. However, these additives are not necessarily needed and may also come with harmful effects. Read on to take a brief look at the differences between biological and chemical septic tank additives.
Biological VS Chemical Septic Tank Additives
Types of Additives
Although there are over a thousand different additive products that you can find in supermarkets, they can all be broken down into one of two categories: biological and chemical. Biological additives typically include bacteria, enzymes, and yeast, while chemical additives are organic or inorganic compounds. Biological additives are used because of their suggested ability to minimize the amount of grease, oil, and effluent solids within the tank; unfortunately, evidence exists that this can cause solids to find their way from the septic tank to the drain field and cause clogging in the process. On the other hand, chemical additives like sulfuric acid, hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda have been used in order to address clogs in soil absorption systems so that they can once again work at full capacity. However, some of these additives have been found to compromise the structure of the system and reduce the permeability of the soil.
Potential Harm to the Septic System
When comparing biological vs chemical septic tank additives for potential advantages and disadvantages, you should know that chemical additives are far more likely to harm your septic system itself. Additives that are acid or alkali-based may cause corrosion in your septic tank as well as sterilize your septic system. Additionally, organic chemical additives can combine with your groundwater and potentially contaminate wells, ultimately compromising your drinking water.
It always helps to know how the additives you use, whether biological or chemical, can affect the environment. Organic chemical additives such as benzenes, naphthalenes, and alkanes are pollutants, and even at lower levels, they should not be used. Additives that include zinc sulfate, formaldehyde, and paraformaldehyde should also be avoided; unlike biological additives, chemical additives tend to be much more harmful to the environment.