How A Septic Tank Works

How A Septic Tank Works

A septic tank or domestic sewage treatment plant treats wastewater from premises not connected to the mains drainage system. This wastewater includes toilet waste, shower waste, and sink waste.

Types of Septic Tanks

Septic tanks and sewage treatment plants come in various shapes and sizes. However, traditional or older tanks are usually rectangular structures made of brick, stone, or concrete buried in the ground. More modern tanks can be made from plastic or fibreglass, shaped like an onion or a large rectangle.

Operation of a Septic Tank

A septic tank works as a passive system powered entirely by gravity. Simple sewage treatment plants may rely on a pump, which is positioned inside or in a separate pump chamber outside the main tank, to replace the force of gravity for discharge through a drainage field.

Flow of Wastewater

All household wastewater flows into the septic tank at one end. Solid waste material settles in the septic tank and is digested by natural bacteria, which must be allowed to breed within the septic tank. As new water enters the septic tank, it displaces the water already there. This treated effluent drains from the septic tank’s outlet pipe, normally to a drainage field system.

Layers of Waste

In a traditionally constructed septic tank, there are three layers of waste. Anything that floats rises to the top of the septic tank and forms a layer known as the scum layer. Anything heavier than water sinks to the bottom of the septic tank to form the sludge layer. In the middle is a fairly clear water layer with some suspended particles. This water contains bacteria and chemicals like nitrogen, phosphorus, and ammonia, which act as a fertiliser, but it is largely free of solids.

Maintenance of a Septic Tank

Over time, partially decomposed solids build up on the bottom of the septic tank. This sludge must be cleaned out regularly to ensure the tank continues to work properly and to prevent the drainage field from becoming choked. Emptying the septic tank should normally take place every twelve months.

Selecting a Local Septic Tank Emptying Company

When selecting a local septic tank emptying company in Bristol, Swindon, Cardiff, Newport or Bath, it is important to choose a reliable and experienced service provider. Start by researching companies with good reviews and a strong reputation in the area. Ensure the company is licensed and adheres to all local regulations regarding septic tank maintenance and waste disposal. Additionally, enquire about the services they offer, their availability for emergency call-outs, and their pricing structure. Seeking recommendations from neighbours or local community groups can also provide valuable insights. By carefully selecting a reputable company, you can ensure the proper maintenance and longevity of your septic tank system.

Book Domestic & Commercial Liquid Waste Removal Services

For local domestic Septic Tank Emptying or Commercial Waste Liquid removal services in Bristol, Swindon, Bath, Cardiff, Newport, Gloucester and Cheltenham areas, complete the form below or call 01454 222 888.