A major problem with soakwells is that they can become blocked with decomposing leaves and silt, leading to flooding in the aftermath of heavy rains. You could prevent this problem by using a novel and environmentally friendly solution – worms. But how could worms help to keep your soakwell clear? Read on to find out.
The worms that can be put to work in your soakwell are a species of sewage worm, and they must be obtained from specialist suppliers; you can't just dig up a few random worms in your garden and utilise those! Sewage worms are bred on worm farms, specifically for this job.
The special worms are supplied in a bucket containing their bedding and some nutrition to get them started. All you need to do is put the worms into your soakwell via the manhole cover or grill. They will then move through the pipework towards the soakwell, clearing any debris and soil as they go.
The worms will begin the process of clearing your soakwell immediately, but it could take a couple of weeks for the blockage to be cleared. Once the soakwell is clear, the worms will prevent a recurrence of the problem. Once the worms are in situ, you won't need to buy anymore, as they will naturally reproduce.
As there is oxygen present in water, silt, and sludge, the worms will live happily there, living on the organic matter contained in the soil. Dilute household chemicals won't kill the worms, provided you don't pour concentrated cleaning products and bleach into the soakwell.
The worm cast produced by the worms as they feed is composed largely of water so it simply drains away and biodegrades into the soil. The worms don't smell and neither will your soakwell pipework once they've cleared it for you.
Once the worms are established in your soakwell pipework and in the soakwell itself, you won't see them. The worms won't creep out into your garden or emerge from your pipework into your loo or kitchen sink; they can only live in the environment that exists within your soakwell and its incumbent pipework.
You could save yourself a whole lot of hassle and hard work in the long run by using the power of nature to keep your soakwell clear and free from obstructions. Sewage worms are an environmentally friendly way to clearing blocked pipework, leaving your soakwell free to cope with flood water.