|Do's & Don'ts
Pump Your Septic Septics need to be pumped regularly - ideally every 3-5
years - and need to be kept in good working order. A little proactive care in
this area can go a long way!
Replace Fixtures Replace older toilets with 6 litre water saving units.
Switch to water saving faucets and shower heads.
Maintain Heat in Septic if possible It is important to maintain heat in
your septic tank during the winter months. While bacteria generate heat by
themselves, try using warm water or insulating your tank with styrofoam to
maximize your bacteria's sewage-busting power. They don't work well in freezing
Reforest the Shoreline Reintroducing native plants to the water's edge
benefits the lake by minimizing phosphates, minimizing erosion, filtering and
oxygenating the water, and providing habitat for our aquatic friends.
Go Phosphate Free Use alternative cleaners (such as baking soda and
vinegar) or use phosphate-free environmentally friendly soaps, detergents and
cleansers. Many stores in Muskoka are both carrying a complete line of these
products. Look for them!
Lake-Friendly Walkways Use wood chips or mulch for walkways. Preferably
avoid direct lines to the lake. Instead, make an interesting zig-zag pattern,
and protect the lake at the same time!
Be Fuel Efficient Buy fuel efficient engines (in vehicles, lawn mowers,
snowmobiles, boats) and reduce your gasoline consumption.
Handle Chemicals Properly Handle fuel, oil, and other chemicals with
great care and have an action plan to deal with any spills that occur. Take
paint, batteries, aerosol cans and petroleum products to hazardous waste depots
Recycle and Compost Recycle and compost in order to reduce your
household garbage to one bag per week.
Protect the Shoreline Ensure that your dock / boathouse and other
structures do not occupy more than 25% of your shoreline. Leave the remaining
75% (or more) of your shoreline in its natural state. Do not remove rocks, tree
Don't Use Antibacterial Soap We need those bacteria to break down solids
Don't Use Chlorine/Bleach These products kill the bacteria we need.
Avoid Paved Driveways & Concrete Walkways Don't pave your driveway
or install concrete walkways, etc. They act as a funnel directly depositing all
the "unwanteds" into the lake with no filter whatsoever (and increases our
Don't Use Sand Along the Shoreline Sand is loaded with phosphates, not
to mention that it destroys the natural filters we need to keep the lake
Don't Make Too Many Waves Prevent erosion by reducing boat wake effects
Don't use concrete piers, rock cribs, or green/pressure treated wood for your
docks. Pressure treated wood has chemicals which leach into the water.
Preferred woods are Douglas Fir, Western Red Cedar and Eastern White Cedar.
Don't Have a Boat Launch on your Property Again, it acts as a funnel
directly depositing all the "unwanteds" into the lake, which in turn increases
Don't Use Fertilizer Avoid fertilizer, weed and feed, magic soil, etc.
They directly contribute to the increased phosphorous levels.
Don't Flush Chemicals Never flush any chemicals, paint, etc. down the
toilette, as they will eventually end up in the lake.