Septic Tank Emptying
Septic tanks must be periodically inspected and maintained to ensure the life of the tank and soakaway system. It is normal practice to have the septic tank emptied annually although regular inspection of the effluent level inside septic tanks is necessary to prevent failure of the system or in the worst case scenario; flooding. If the effluent level is near the inlet pipe into the tank, then the tank needs emptying. The effluent level within a septic tank should never be above the inlet into the tank. If the septic tank is not emptied at suitable intervals, fine solids can end up passing through the tank and into the receiving soakaway system, resulting in the soakaway blinding off.
On traditionally built septic tanks, there are dip pipes (also known as H or T-pipes) on the inlet and outlet which are designed so that only the correct type of waste enters the septic tank. Often these can fall to the bottom of the tank or become damaged. If they are damaged or missing, it is essential that they are replaced as it would then be possible for fine solids pass through the tank and into the soakaway system. Inlet dip pipes can also become blocked over time due to fat ‘build-up’ inside the pipe. If this happens, incoming effluent would need to rise to the top of the dip pipe before entering the tank and as a result it would partially flood the incoming foul drainage pipes.
We are a licensed tankering company and our tankers are capable of emptying all types of septic tanks. Due the design of our tankers, we are able to access and empty septic tanks in difficult or restricted locations. For more information on our tankering services, visit our tankering page.
New septic tank regulations from 1st January 2020:
If you have a septic tank that discharges directly to a surface water such as a ditch, stream or river, it must be replaced or upgraded by 1st of January 2020 or when you sell the property to either;
- A full sewage treatment system complying to BS EN 12566-3 certification
- Alternatively, the divert the discharge to the watercourse to a drainfield constructed to BS6297-2007.
For more information on the regulations and sewage treatment systems, view our sewage treatment systems page.