Is Liquid Fabric Softener Bad for Septic Systems?

Is Liquid Fabric Softener Bad for Septic Systems
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The Septic system is designed for treating human waste. All of your household waste, like the bathroom, kitchen, and others, go through this system. However, liquid fabric softener is also gone via septic systems. So, a septic system is essential to use the right fabric softener.

Is liquid fabric softener bad for septic systems? It is hard to answer like yes or no. Some of the liquid fabric softeners are good, and some of the fabric softeners are bad to use. But, most laundry liquid fabric softener is bad for septic systems and avoids bacteria and some other problems.

It is essential to keep the septic system healthy to get quality performance. The chemical and detergent are truly devastating for the septic system.

Is Liquid Fabric Softener Bad for Septic Systems?

Most liquid fabric softeners are devastating for the septic system. The chemicals and detergent destroy the ecosystem of the septic system. Moreover, it also affects physical functions, which finally kills the septic system.

The fabric softeners are antibacterial and kill good bacteria from the septic tank. They also attack good newborn bacteria, which is not a good option for your septic tank.

When you use liquid fabric softener for your septic tanks, they increase nitrogen passing which is harmful to the septic tank. Fabric softener also comes with petroleum-based, as in oil-based, which is hard enough to remove from the septic tank.

It also becomes the scum layer too thick. On the other hand, the liquid fabric softener builds clogs, which also causes several problems with your septic tank inside and pipes.

What is Fabric Softener?

Fabric softener is a lubricant that softens the fabric and adds to your laundry load. Moreover, the fabric softener is also used to remove the hard stain, disinfecting, and other areas.

Furthermore, the fabric softener provides the fabric with freshness and long-lasting fragrance performance. Overall, it is a liquid and versatile to use.

Why is Fabric Softener Bad for Septic Tanks?

Fabric softener is bad for septic tanks because of several reasons. The fabric softener comes with several chemicals, acids, and other elements which are not a good option for septic systems.

Septic tanks contain good bacteria and some other good things. But, when you use fabric softener for your home septic tank, the tank is not cleaned properly and damages internal functions.

On the contrary, the ecosystem of a septic tank also destroys when you are using chemicals and fabric softener on the tank. However, check out the following checklist, which are the main culprits to damage the septic tank when you use fabric softener.

  • The fabric softener chemicals are extremely harmful to septic tank
  • Fabric softener damaged the internal physical functions of the septic tank
  • They kill good bacteria in the septic tank, and the septic tank loses its power to drain the bad things.
  • Fabric softener also destroys the ecosystem of the septic tank.

The above points are the main culprit of fabric softeners that destroy your septic tank. So, try to avoid using fabric softener on the septic tank as much as possible.

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How Do Fabric Softeners Work?

We love to use fabric softeners to make our fabric soft and comfortable. We hardly avoid using fabric softeners because of easy to use and provide better performance.

But how do fabric softeners work? Fabric softener is a type of chemical. It comes with several ingredients, which we added to the washing machine cycle. After that, the protective chemical layer cycles active and starts to protect the fabric from chemicals.

Finally, the chemicals and liquid separate on the machine, and wash your fabrics with the liquid. This is a common system of fabric softeners to wash the fabric.

What Happens if the Bacteria in Your Tank Stop Working?

Good bacteria are always essential to treat waste properly. When the bacteria come in healthy condition, they can break down oil, gases, and waste.

But, if the bacteria in your tank is not healthy, it produces several problems. For example, solid waste is not broken down properly. And your septic tank also stops working like the previous one.

The fabric softener and septic tank are not matched when your septic tank bacteria come in good condition. When bacteria stop working in your tank, you need to understand the bacteria is attacked by toxic and several chemicals.

The Effects of Fabric Softener on Your Septic System

Like other chemicals and household elements, a fabric softener can devastate your septic tank. First of all, the chemical effects on the ecosystem and damage the tank’s physical functioning.

Generally, the fabric softener comes with two harmful elements, such as petroleum products and quaternary ammonium compounds. Petroleum products are made of oil and some other ingredients which are hard to dissolve for your septic system.

These problems are the main culprit that destroys the septic tank’s ecosystem. The septic tank always cleans chemicals and other harmful elements, and that’s why you need to reduce the waste pressure on the septic system to work properly.

Fabric Softeners and Septic Tanks – The Solution

When you use liquid fabric softener, your septic tank must come with some problems. So, you need to find out an alternative to get a proper solution.

Vinegar is always friendly. Vinegar is a natural element that makes the fabric soft and odor-eliminating. You need to add a half cup to your next wash.

On the other hand, you can use septic-safe softeners to avoid chemicals and other harmful elements. You will get “Septic Safe” available on the market. So, try to use the softener with septic-safe elements to get better performance.

Keeping Your Septic Tank Healthy (and Wallet Full)

A healthy septic tank doesn’t require repair costs. If you think that you need to use fabric softener and other chemicals, you need to follow the below serious points to keep your septic tank healthy.

  • Don’t use hard toilet paper use only toilet paper. You should not use flushable wipes and other elements which hard to flush.
  • Use garbage disposal, which helps the septic tank isn’t a trash can.
  • Try to avoid dropping oil or grease on the sink.
  • Follow the guideline you find with the septic tank.

These points are truly essential for a user to keep a septic tank healthy. Moreover, these points are also essential when the wallet becomes full.

Alternatives to Fabric Softeners

People love to use fabric softeners because of making the fabric soft, clean, and get a good smell. But it needs to be better for your septic tank. Luckily, you can use fabric softeners alternative for your septic tank, which provide soft fabric, clean, good smell, and also keep the septic tank healthy.

You can use petroleum-based fabric softeners and also use chemically-laden to get the best result, like fabric softener. But vinegar is one of the best selections. Vinegar is always natural and doesn’t affect the septic tank.

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Fabric Softener | Flickr

I suggest you use vinegar instead of fabric softener. This element is ready to provide solid performance and keep the septic tank healthy.

If you think that you don’t have an alternative way and need to use fabric softener, you should have a keen eye out for signs of septic system failure. And, of course, you should check out the septic tank from time to time.

Is Snuggle Fabric Softener Safe for Septic Systems

Snuggle is a kind of fabric softener that is good for good smelling, cleaning, and making the cloth soft. But, it is not designed for a septic tank system. The ingredients of this fabric softener devastate the ecosystem of the septic tank.

The oil and other ingredients are the main culprit, damaging the septic tank’s physical part. So, try to avoid Snuggle fabric softener to protect the septic system. On the other hand, you can also use alternative fabric softeners like vinegar to get better performance.

Is Calgon Safe for Septic Tanks

Calgon is safe for septic tanks when you are using this liquid in your washing machine. But, you should not use a high amount of Calgon because of affecting on the septic tank. Calgon doesn’t come with many harmful elements. But it would help if you kept in mind that it isn’t capable of removing stains or hard elements from the fabric.

Is Downy safe for septic systems?

No, Downy doesn’t feel safe for the septic system. This detergent comes with toxic elements used to remove hard elements from the fabric. On the other hand, the ingredients are also harmful to your septic tank.

People use Downy to remove rust and hard elements from the fabric and also make the fabric soft to use. But, your house septic tank may be a devastating septic tank ecosystem. So, try to avoid the Downy element to using your system.

Is Seventh Generation fabric softener septic safe?

Yes, it is safe for both septic systems and greywater systems. You can easily and comfortably use Seventh Generation fabric softener to get soft fabric, clean it, and get a good smell.

Furthermore, the ingredients are also safe for septic systems and fabric. They don’t make the elements toxic, even if you are using a high amount of fabric softener. There are plenty of advantages you will discover from Seventh Generation fabric softener.

Is Gain Fabric Softener Safe for Septic Tanks?

The official answer is no. Gain fabric softener is not safe for septic tanks. This softener comes with similar ingredients to other fabric softeners. The ingredients are truly harmful to the septic system and destroy the ecosystem of the fabric softener.

So, it would be better for you to use an alternative to this fabric softener to protect your septic system. You can use Seventh Generation fabric softener, vinegar, and bleach to get better performance.


What fabric softener can you use with a septic tank?

You can use ECOS laundry fabric softener with a septic tank. These fabric softeners build for both septic systems and also provide deep cleaning, good smelling, and softening. The ingredients never make the elements of fabric softener toxic.

When should you not use liquid fabric softener?

You should not use liquid fabric softener when your house comes with a septic system. Septic system keeps the chemicals and harmful household elements clean. But, when you use liquid fabric softener, the chemicals and other harmful elements devastate the ecosystem of the septic tank.

What products should you not use with a septic tank?

You should avoid using many elements in a septic tank. For example, fabric softeners, Latex products, Medicines, Antibacterial soap, Drain cleaners, and so on. You must need to avoid toxic elements in the septic tank at any cost.

What will ruin a septic system?

The hard elements like toilet paper, tissue, paper towels, tampons, sanitary product, fabric softeners, medicine, and some other elements. These things destroy the septic tank’s physical sections and devastate the ecosystem.

Is Tide laundry detergent safe for septic systems?

Tide laundry detergent may be safe, but they also come with too sudsy for an aerated septic system. On the other hand, Tide laundry detergent works properly to clean fabric and make the fabric soft to use. But, you should use the detergent in limited amounts to avoid toxic elements.


Is liquid fabric softener bad for septic systems? It is a common question for first-time septic tank users. The majority of liquid fabric softeners are bad for septic tanks. The fabric softener devastated the ecosystem and physical section of the septic tank.

To protect the septic tank, you should find out alternative things to clean the fabric and also make the fabric soft. However, you can use vinegar, Seventh Generation fabric softener, and some other elements. Try to avoid harmful things to use in your kitchen, laundry, bathroom, and other areas to save septic tanks.

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