How To Increase Bacteria In Septic Tank

How to Increase Bacteria in Septic Tank: 3 Easy Ways!

One of the worst things to dread as a homeowner is having your septic tank quickly fill up to the point of overflowing because there aren’t enough good bacteria to break down the waste.

That’s why you constantly need to check your septic tanks to ensure that everything’s moving along fine.

To increase bacteria in your septic tank, you can either use septic additives for quick relief or add yeast or rotten tomatoes if you want a more natural approach.

But, how do you go about these?

Join me and find out.

Why Do You Need Good Bacteria in Your Septic Tanks?

1. To break down the solid waste from your house

These types of bacteria, however awful they may seem, play a very important role in breaking down waste coming from your house. These include solid waste from your toilets and others coming from your garbage disposal units.

If left in their initial state, these waste products could easily fill up your septic tank, demanding regular emptying which can be quite difficult and costly in the long run. Who wants that? NO-ONE!

The good bacteria, in this case, helps to convert them into a more fluid state which takes longer to fill up the tank. It is also very easy to get rid of your septic tank contents when they are in a fluid state as there would be no sludge clumps that are widely known to block the sucking mechanisms.

2. To help counter the effects of bleaches, chemical detergents, etc

Chemical Detergents

Unknown to a lot of homeowners, regular household cleaning solutions like bleach, drain cleaners, and even washing detergents kill tons of the good bacteria that your septic needs.

As a result, you have to ensure that you replenish the lost numbers regularly to keep your tank operating at optimum conditions.

How to Increase Good Bacteria in Your Septic Tank

Whether you’re thinking about a composting toilet vs septic tank, it’s important to have a sufficient level of bacterial activity to keep your waste systems in top shape.

Well, if you are looking for a quick solution for septic tanks, then adding septic tank additives will do the trick for you.

Using septic additives

These are mainly inorganic compounds (or solvents) that are specifically made to boost the conditions in a septic tank.

Before you use one, you must make sure that the additive is approved for use in septic tanks. You can always seek the help of a professional if you have any doubts or questions.

If not used properly, inorganic septic additives can also damage your septic tank by corroding the tank itself or the distribution boxes. This is because a majority of artificial additives have alkalis and strong acids that could cause havoc if not properly used.

How to Increase Bacteria in Septic Tank Naturally

Apart from using chemical additives, you can also take on a much safer, more natural approach to increase the number of good bacteria in your septic tank.

These 2 options may not be as fast as using inorganic additives, but at least you won’t have to worry about them corroding your septic system!

1. Yeast

Dry Yeast

Using yeast offers a much cheaper way of adding bacteria to your septic tank. The best thing is that you only have to use this method every once a month and you’ll have a pretty healthy septic tank.

To go about it:

  • Get a packet of dry yeast and empty a ¼ ounces of its content into your toilet.
  • Flush it down to allow it to reach the septic content and leave the rest to the yeast.

Doing this every month will naturally boost enzyme and bacteria production in your septic tank and keep them at effective levels.

Note: Avoid using excess yeast with the hope of getting better or faster results. Doing so will only increase frothing that will eventually produce gases that will keep the solid waste from properly settling at the bottom of the tank. In the long run, you’ll have to deal with the floating effluent also or risk getting clogs.

2. Rotten tomatoes

Who knew rotten tomatoes could be so useful? Well, pushing down about 3 to 4 rotten tomatoes into your garbage disposal unit will dramatically increase the number of good bacteria in your septic tank.

What makes it even more satisfying is that you only need to do this after every 4 months. This means that it’s a longer-lasting solution compared to the rest provided that you don’t jump your schedule.

You can easily get rotten tomatoes by letting some stock from your grocery go bad. Make sure you separate them to avoid affecting other tomatoes that you still plan to use in the kitchen.

How Do You Improve Bacteria Activity in Septic Tanks?


To get the best environment that will boost your septic tank’s bacteria population, you have to:

  1. Avoid using bleach when possible. Bleach and other household cleaning solutions kill all bacteria – including the good bacteria, effectively slowing down the rate at which solid waste gets broken down in the tank.
  2. Avoid chugging grease and fats down your garbage disposals. This is because there aren’t as many bacteria around that can effectively break down greasy and fatty waste to a more disposable state. Adding more fats and grease will only slow down the decomposition process and may lead to faster build-ups in your septic.
  3. Use toilet-friendly toilet paper. You may consider using eco-friendly toilet paper that easily breaks down when flushed down the toilet. Doing this fastens the whole conversion process and prevents unnecessary clogs in your tank.
  4. Do not flush chemicals e.g., medicine in the toilet. These, too, tend to kill septic bacteria and eventually slow down the whole process.
  5. Avoid disposing of not-for-flush items in the toilet. This may include sanitary towels or other non-digestible waste. This type of waste only leads to a massive solid buildup that may prove very difficult to dispose of at the end of it all.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can a septic tank clog up without bacteria?

A septic tank can easily clog up if bacteria were to be removed from it.

Septic tanks greatly depend on the bacteria that come in with organic waste to keep functioning at optimum levels. These bacteria normally break down all that filth in the tank from solid into a more viscous state and prevent it from clogging or filling up quickly.

This conversion also makes it very easy for the septic cleaning services to suck off the waste when it’s time for emptying the tank. Depending on the size of your septic tank, this should be every 3 – 5 years.

2. Do septic tank maintenance promote bacteria growth?

Proper septic tank maintenance will promote the addition of beneficial bacteria if done right.

Some of the best tips for maintaining your septic tank include not flushing non-digestible waste, bleach, anti-bacterial soap, chemicals, or greasy fats down your waste drain. Doing so normally kills the bacteria that you desperately need to keep your septic tank operating.

In the long run, the process of breaking down the waste will slow down and cause worrying solid waste buildups in your septic system.