Septic Tank Services

A septic tank or treatment plant collects and treats wastewater at a property that is not connected to the mains sewer system . Therefore, most commonly used in rural areas. The term ‘septic’ means ‘infected with microorganisms’; the tanks contain bacteria which break down organic waste.

A sewage treatment plant provides treatment of waste, whereas a septic tank simply separates the waste. This means that the waste water leaving the plant is cleaner than what leaves a septic. PipeServ would recommend the installation of a treatment plant due to it being more environmentally friendly.

Installed underground, a septic tank or treatment plant makes use of natural processes to treat the sewage it stores. Usually made up of two chambers or compartments, the tank receives wastewater from an inlet pipe.

How does a septic tank work?

Once sewage from a drainage system reaches a septic tank, the following occurs (see diagram)

How does a treatment plant work ?

Once sewage from a drainage system reaches the treatment plant, the following occurs (see diagram)

Maintenance Advice

Septic systems require relatively little maintenance, but septic tank owners need to observe certain rules to make sure the tank system operates effectively.

For example, the following items should never be flushed down the drain or toilet as these items should never enter a septic tank :

  • Food waste
  • Fat, oil and grease
  • Plastic bags
  • Nappies
  • Sanitary towels, including tampons, applicators and wrappers
  • Cotton buds
  • Condoms
  • Bandages and plasters
  • Baby wipes
  • Medicines, needles and syringes*
  • Cleaning wipes
  • Razor blades

These items will block the inlet and outlet pipes, and also disrupt the biological separation process taking place within the tank itself.

Frequent de-sludging is important to ensure a build-up does not occur. Annual maintenance should focus on removing solids from the tank- and should only ever be carried out by a qualified sewage worker. Similarly, disposing of this waste should be conducted by a registered waste carrier.

Another general maintenance guideline is to avoid using an excessive amount of anti-bacterial agents. These agents can affect the flora needed to process the waste water, which may hinder the septic tank’s function.


Installation of a treatment plant
De-sludging and jetting drainage field of brick built septic tank
Repair to an existing septic tank