How to get rid of septic biomat


Septic systems play a crucial role in treating wastewater in homes and businesses. However, over time, a common issue that can arise is the development of biomats in the septic tank and drain field. These biomats are slimy layers of bacteria and organic matter that can obstruct proper wastewater treatment. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore effective strategies for getting rid of septic biomats, ensuring the longevity and functionality of your septic system.

Understanding Septic Biomats

Septic biomats, also known as biofilms, are natural byproducts of the wastewater treatment process within septic systems. These slimy layers form on the walls of the septic tank and the drain field’s soil. While some level of biomat is normal, excessive buildup can lead to poor wastewater drainage and potential system failure.

Steps to Eliminate Septic Biomats

1. Regular Pumping

Schedule regular septic tank pumping to remove accumulated solids and excess biomats. Pumping helps prevent biomats from becoming too thick and causing drainage issues.

2. Avoid Harsh Chemicals

Avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach, antibacterial soaps, and strong cleaning agents. These chemicals can disrupt the natural balance of bacteria in the septic system, leading to increased biomat formation.

3. Use Bacteria Additives

Introduce septic-safe bacteria additives to the system. These additives can help break down organic matter and maintain a healthy bacterial balance, reducing the formation of biomats.

Useful Resources Links

  1. Environmental Protection Agency – Septic Systems
  2. University of Georgia Extension – Septic System Care

4. Divert Excess Water

Redirect sources of excess water away from the drain field. This can include gutter downspouts, sump pump discharge, and surface water runoff. Excess water can contribute to biomat growth and clogging.

5. Avoid Overloading the System

Limit the use of water-intensive appliances like washing machines and dishwashers during a short period. Overloading the system with too much wastewater can lead to biomat buildup.

6. Consider Aeration

For more severe cases of biomat formation, consider installing an aeration system in the septic tank. Aeration introduces oxygen, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria that break down biomats.

Dealing with Challenges

1. Reoccurrence of Biomats

Biomats can reoccur over time due to the natural functioning of a septic system. Regular maintenance and adopting preventive measures are essential to managing their growth.

2. Professional Inspection

If you suspect severe biomat buildup or experience drainage issues, consult a professional septic system inspector. They can assess the situation and recommend appropriate solutions.


Can I use household cleaners to clean the septic system?

It’s recommended to avoid using harsh household cleaners in the septic system. Instead, use septic-safe cleaners and bacteria additives to maintain a healthy bacterial balance.

How often should I pump my septic tank?

Septic tank pumping frequency depends on factors such as household size and water usage. As a general guideline, pumping every 3 to 5 years is recommended.

Can biomats lead to complete septic system failure?

Yes, excessive biomat formation can lead to poor drainage, clogs, and potential septic system failure. Regular maintenance and proper care are essential to prevent this.

Are all bacteria additives safe for septic systems?

Not all bacteria additives are safe for septic systems. Choose additives specifically designed for septic systems and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Can tree roots contribute to biomat growth?

Tree roots can infiltrate septic systems and contribute to clogs and biomat growth. Plant trees away from the drain field and have the system regularly inspected for root intrusion.

Can biomats be removed without pumping the septic tank?

While pumping the septic tank is often necessary to remove excess solids and biomats, introducing septic-safe bacteria additives can help break down biomats over time.


Preventing and managing septic biomats is essential for maintaining a properly functioning septic system. By following the strategies outlined in this guide and utilizing the provided resources, you can effectively eliminate biomats and ensure the longevity and efficiency of your septic system.

Keyword: How to get rid of septic biomat

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