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Water treatment plants, are they a waste of time?

Not if you're in the market for a safe and environmental solution to dispose of human and household waste.

Treatment plants - What are they and how do they work?

A waste water treatment plant or treatment works is a drainage unit designed to safely dispose of human waste and also household liquid from toilets, sinks, baths and showers.

The units work by capturing the sewage and actively treating using an aerobic biological process. As time elapses, the sewage is neutralised to a high level of cleanliness. Once this process is complete, the effluent is then sufficiently clean to be allowed to pass in to the surrounding watercourse.

Like a septic tank, after a period of time treatment plants will need emptying as a sludge of settled-out solids will form a the bottom of the unit. Emptying times can vary from 3 months to 5 years depending on the type of treatment plant chosen. It is always worth checking how often these intervals are before you buy. This way, you can factor in the associated costs.

Do I need permission?

It must be noted, approval will be needed by the local authorities’ environment agency. All tanks need to be registered with the environment agency as an environmental permit may be required. If the chosen product meets the EPP2 (Environment Permitting Program) criteria and is certified and CE marked EN12566-3, it should be eligible for an exemption. This then allows for neutral and clean liquids to then be passed in to the aforementioned watercourse.

Choosing the correct size

When choosing a suitable treatment plant, the main thing to consider is the number of people that may be at a property at any one point in time. This coupled with the number of toilets, sinks, baths and showers that will be in use at any one time.

Running costs

Treatment plants will need an electrical supply. Typically, they are economical to run as they only consume about 60W.

As units are mechanical, they need servicing annually to keep them working as efficiently as possible.

Noise and smells

Correctly installed sewage treatment plants do not omit any foul smells. With the evolution of technology, all the better quality treatment plants on the market should have a virtually silent operation.

Further assistance

If you require any further assistance or want to know more about the treatment plants available in the UK, of which there are many, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Our team is on hand 7 days a week to offer free, impartial advice.