Should I install a septic tank or a sewage treatment plant?
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Should I install a septic tank or a sewage treatment plant?
It is very common in the sector for both customers and companies to use the terms Septic Tank and Sewage Treatment Plant interchangeably. They are however very different products both in terms of what they do and the building regulations and rules that apply to them.
A Septic tank is normally a two-chambered tank (see diagram below) with a gap in the separating wall which allows flow between the two. The First chamber is normally called the settling chamber, waste falls to the bottom and scum to the top the liquid in the middle flows into the second chamber. The liquid in the second chamber then flows out of the tank.
It is important to note that the discharge from a Septic Tank can still be harmful and requires further treatment. This is why from the 1st of January and Septic Tank that discharges directly to a drainage ditch or watercourse will become illegal. All discharges from a Septic Tank post that point will require further treatment either from a drainage field/mound or constructed wetland. If either of these options is not viable then you will be required to install a suitably certified Sewage Treatment Plant.
Sewage Treatment Plants
That brings us on nicely to Sewage Treatment Plants. This term refers to a range of systems engineered to treat the effluent to a minimum standard within the tank. If the tank meets the following standard BS EN 12566 then this will normally allow for direct discharge to a watercourse. It, however, becomes your responsibility to ensure that the effluent quality remains within the legally acceptable parameters. If a direct discharge is not feasible a discharge to drainage specific infiltration tunnels is accepted by Building Control. The design will need to be implemented in accordance with a similar set of rules to drainage fields/mounds. The benefit is that the field takes up far less space and the installation is far cheaper.
What should I install?
Okay so which should you install? Well if you can or currently discharge directly to a watercourse or drainage ditch then you will need to install a sewage treatment plant. If you have a functioning drainage field but your Septic Tank has failed. Then in the short term, it is probably cheaper to install a replacement Septic Tank. This is a short term fix though as drainage fields fail; it is inevitable, so a pound today may cost you 2 in the future. If you require a new system both tank and drainage field then it is normally cheaper to install a Sewage Treatment Plant. We are happy to give you a quote for both. Personally I prefer the hygiene of a Sewage Treatment Plant which pumps out near pure water. Rather than a large patch of your garden where at a maximum depth of 700m basically raw effluent is being pumped, nasty puddles! The clean effluent also gives you far more options.
On the flip side, as Sewage Treatment Plants are far more complicated than Septic Tanks there is more to go wrong. This can obviously be costly, there are some major brands (we can’t mention by name) which are terribly unreliable and cost a fortune to repair. My personal opinion, not the opinion of Homeseptic Ltd etc etc. Is to avoid anything with a disc, chain, in fact, any metal coming into contact with the effluent and those that use any sort of medium. Take a look at the Harlequin and Graf range of tanks as a starter but also see our tank buying guide.
Our Core Services: The Sewage Treatment expert Installers
On the 1st January 2020, all Septic Tanks that discharge to a Stream, Watercourse or Drainage Ditch will become illegal and will require replacing with a Sewage Treatment Plant. Please see here for more details.
Expert wastewater treatment engineers who specialise in Septic Tank and Soakaway replacements as well as Sewage Treatment Installations. We are based in the New Forest, Hampshire but operate across the South Coast as well as Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon, Sussex, Surrey, Oxfordshire, and Berkshire.
The Home of Septic tank and private drainage system solutions.
Based in the New Forest, Hampshire on the border with Dorset and Wiltshire we operate an expert team of off-mains drainage specialists. This encompasses Septic Tank, Soakaway and drainage system problems, installations, blockages, and servicing. In addition, any issues relating to cesspits and sewage treatment plants.
Homeseptic offers high quality, professional advice, repairs and installation for all aspects of effluent cleansing and disposal across the south of England. Whether you’re looking for septic tank installation, sewerage treatment plants or systems, piping or soakaway solutions, Homeseptic employs only the most competent engineers in the drainage and treatment industry and knows exactly which solutions suit each property.
We only install and offer quality systems we believe in, from suppliers we know and trust.
New Forest Philosophy
As we have said Homeseptic is based in the New Forest. A great location in between the cities of Southampton, Salisbury and Bournemouth. We are a group of good friends who grew up together in the area. Individually we all have grown tired of the way other Drainage firms are run. As a result, this is why we set up Homeseptic. If you want to know more please check out our About Page
We want to actually put the customer first and turn up to do a great job that we can be proud of. Unfortunately, this is not the case in the market, with most companies pressuring their workers to sell unnecessary works on a visit. Due to this, we offer upfront quotations with any variations discussed before we start work.
We are honest hard working professionals, which we hope you will agree with. As a result, it will certainly not turn up in flash sales vehicles and give you a load of chat and then do a terrible job. Our team will come with the job in mind and the aim of giving you the best value we can in order to facilitate a quality installation.
We cover all of Hampshire, West Sussex, Dorset, Somerset, and Wiltshire. Please get in touch and see what you think.