Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants; Finding the Right Solution for your Needs

Posted On: 10 June 2024

Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants; Finding the Right Solution for your Needs

Posted On: 10 June 2024

When it comes to managing domestic wastewater, homeowners often face the dilemma of choosing between a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant.

Both systems have their unique features, regulations, costs, and maintenance requirements, but choosing the right option involves a bit of thought regarding the property’s location, household size, environmental considerations, and budget.

In this article, we’ll delve into each of these aspects in order to help you make an informed decision for your purchase. Harlequin Plastics is one of the leading suppliers of sewage treatment plants across the UK and Ireland.

By drawing on our extensive knowledge, we aim to provide a comprehensive guide that not only educates, but also empowers you with information to help you choose the right domestic wastewater management solution for your property.

Regulations: Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants

Understanding and adhering to the appropriate regulations of domestic wastewater management, is crucial for both environmental protection and legal compliance. Here’s a brief overview below, but be sure to check with your local authority for further guidance.

Regulations on Septic Tanks

The Environment Agency has updated regulations to prohibit septic tanks from discharging wastewater directly into a watercourse such as a river, lake or stream. To comply, owners of septic tanks with direct watercourse discharge must upgrade to a full-fledged sewage treatment plant or install a package treatment plant. This change ensures more environmentally friendly wastewater management and aligns with efforts to protect our water ecosystems.

Sewage Treatment Plant Regulations

Sewage treatment plants are also subject to specific environmental regulations to ensure they do not harm the surrounding ecosystem. These regulations often include standards for the quality of the treated water and restrictions on where the plant can be located. Treater water from sewage treatment plants however, is permitted to be discharged into watercourses.

In essence, if you plan on discharging wastewater directly into a watercourse, you legally need to use a sewage treatment plant in order to avoid water pollution.

Comparing the Cost: Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants

Cost is another significant factor in making a choice between a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant. It’s also important to remember that you need to pay for both the septic tank/sewage treatment plant itself and the cost to install it.

Here’s a brief overview of the cost, but please note that these are only typically average prices, which may vary depending on many other factors.

How Much is a Septic Tank?

The cost of a septic tank tends to be significantly cheaper than a domestic sewage treatment plant, this is due to their simple design and functionality. The price for a septic tank is typically around £1200.

Septic Tank Installation

The installation cost of a septic tank depends on factors like the tank’s size, site accessibility, and local labour rates; it can cost anywhere from £1000 to £3,500 to install.

Domestic Sewage Treatment Plant Prices

On the other hand, sewage treatment plants, while more costly, offer higher performance. Prices vary based on size and technology, but you can generally expect to pay between £1,700 and £4,500 for the plant itself.

Sewage Treatment Plant Installation

For sewage treatment plants, installation is more complex and thus more costly. The cost for this can range from £5,300 to £8,500, accounting for factors such as ground conditions and system size.

Whilst domestic sewage treatment plants are more expensive, they offer superior performance and efficiency compared to septic tanks. The choice between a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant should be made after considering both the initial and installation costs, along with the specific needs and circumstances of the property in question.

Emptying: Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants

When deciding between a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant, an essential aspect to consider is the method and frequency that is required to empty or discharge wastewater.

Septic Tank Emptying

Septic tanks need annual emptying in order to remove the build-up of sludge. This is a critical maintenance task to prevent system failure and environmental contamination. Sewage treatment plants, in contrast, often allow for the discharge of the treated water directly to a watercourse or a drainage field.

In short, septic tanks will need to be emptied on a more regular basis compared to domestic sewage treatment plants. Wastewater from Septic Tanks may also not be discharged into a watercourse, it is best to check with your local authority on appropriate septic tank emptying locations.

Septic Tanks vs Sewage Treatment Plants; Which is Right for You?

Choosing between a septic tank and a sewage treatment plant depends on a range of factors, including environmental regulations, initial and ongoing costs, maintenance requirements, and ground conditions. A percolation test is also required to assess the suitability of the soil for a septic system.

While septic tanks are generally cheaper and simpler, sewage treatment plants offer a higher level of treatment and are more environmentally friendly. They also provide a return on investment in the long run. Whatever your choice, ensure it aligns with your needs and that complies with Environment Agency regulations.

Domestic Sewage Treatment Plants for Sale in UK and Ireland

At Harlequin Plastics, we specialise in assisting customers with their purchase of domestic sewage treatment plants, ensuring that you find the ideal solution tailored to your specific needs.

Whether you require a compact 4-person sewage treatment plant or a larger system that is designed for a 30 person sewage treatment plant, we have a range of options to meet your specific requirements.

Our team is dedicated to providing support and guidance throughout your decision-making process. We understand the importance of not only finding a system that operates efficiently but also one that offers maximum environmental protection.

Contact our expert team today to discuss your requirements and explore our diverse range of domestic sewage treatment plants available in the UK and Ireland. Let us help you make an informed choice that balances efficiency, environmental responsibility, and your specific sewage treatment needs.