Aquablast Services Ltd specialise in the installation of septic tanks and sewage treatment plants. If you would like advice on which of these systems is the best solution for you or information on the latest legislation, give us a call.
We also empty, clean and service septic tanks and sewage treatment plants. To maintain efficient operation and prolong the life of your system, solids should be pumped out AT LEAST once a year, dependent on the number of persons using the system. Therefore a pre-planned maintenance programme for scheduled servicing/emptying is highly recommended, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Incorrect installation of a new tank can have devastating results. Ensure your contractor follows the recommended installation for the ground conditions at your site.
To help you keep your septic running at optimum performance between services, here are some helpful care hints and tips.
CARING FOR YOUR SEPTIC TANK
Don't overload the septic tank and drainfield
Household water usage has dramatically increased over the last 20 years. If your septic tank pre-dates the current regulations, it may be too small or be struggling to cope with current flow rates.
Here are some things you can do to reduce this problem:-
Keep trees away from the septic system
Discourage root damage by keeping trees at least 30 metres away from the soakaway.
Trees with very aggressive roots, such as willows and poplars, should be even farther away from the system.
Don't use your toilet and sink as a rubbish bin
Never flush cat litter, disposable nappies, panty liners, tampons, paper towels, facial tissues, coffee grounds or cigarette butts down the toilet. They'll clog your septic tank in less time than you might imagine.
Don't install a waste disposal unit as these can double the amount of solids going into the septic tank.
Be careful what you pour down your sink
Overuse of anti-bacterials, disinfectants and heavy cleaners will kill the beneficial bacteria in the septic tank which digest your solids.
Don't use anti-bacterial hand wash products as you are poisoning your septic tank bacteria with every wash.
DO NOT pour grease or oil down the sink. Wipe greasy dishes with paper towels before washing.
Grease clogs the septic tank soakaway, and effectively 'waterproofs' it, making it impossible for soil to absorb liquids. If that happens, you'll need a new soakaway.
White spirit, varnish, paint thinners, motor oils, petrol and other similar chemicals will ruin your septic system and are not easily broken down by soil bacteria. They will pollute groundwater.
Condensate from condensing boilers is very acidic and must not go into the foul drains
Protect Your Soakaway
Do not drive over the soakaway, build a structure on top of it or cover it with concrete or tarmac. Gravel is acceptable, but only for foot traffic.
If possible, sow grass over the soakaway area as grass takes up a lot of water.
MAINTAINING YOUR SEPTIC TANK
It is your responsibility to look after your system. A properly maintained system is very effective at treating raw sewage.
Why do I need to have my tank emptied?
Solids must be pumped from the septic tank on a regular basis. Ignore the old wives’ tale that 'septic tanks never need emptying’. Septic tanks only have a limited capacity in which sludge can accumulate. If the sludge is not removed, the treatment plant will not work efficiently and the quality of the treated effluent will gradually worsen and may well contaminate the environment and / or damage the infiltration system / drainage field (soakaway).
How often should I have my tank emptied?
Wherever possible, follow the manufacturer's recommendations and discuss it with the person that comes to maintain or empty your tank as this can vary depending on usage and number of people using the septic tank. British Water recommends that, in the absence of a manual or any other recommendations, then domestic sewage or wastewater treatment plants should be desludged ideally every six months or at least annually.
Septic Tanks and Sewage Treatment Plants should ONLY be emptied by licensed waste disposal companies, NOT the local farmer with his slurry tanker. It cannot be spread onto farmland. The fines are substantial if the farmer is caught, and as livestock does not use toilet paper, the source of the manure is highly evident.
It is highly illegal for anyone, other than a licensed waste disposal contractor to empty and dispose of effluent from septic tanks and sewage plants. The effluent must be taken to fully recognised and licensed Sewerage Treatment Works operated by the regulated water companies.
Never lift the lid of a septic tank yourself, particularly if you are alone. The gases in the tank can overcome you very quickly and the bacteria are dangerous. Sewage workers must have regular vaccinations, including Hepatitis, Tetanus and Diphtheria, to protect against them.
What records do I have to keep?
You should keep any records of, for example; tank emptying receipts, maintenance and servicing receipts, repairs, upgrades, manuals, etc.
Aquablast Services Ltd provides Maintenance Record Forms for each customer which are completed after every visit whether it’s routine emptying, servicing or repair work. These can be kept by the householder or held at our offices, if preferred.