Septic Tank Regulations

Septic tanks are used in homes not connected to the public sewer lines to treat wastewater before it can safely be released back to the environment. These are usually old homes and homes that are located far away from the main drainage systems. To prevent water pollution, the Environmental Agency recently came up with new regulations. The regulations took effect in January 2020, and therefore, if your home has a septic tank, you need to familiarize yourself with the new regulation or risk getting fined up to £100,000.

Are You Breaking the Law?

According to Septic tank Regulations, it is illegal for septic tanks to drain into a river, streams, ditches, canals, or any other kind of watercourse. Besides, if your septic tank is designed to drain into a drain field, the drain field should not be close to a watercourse. Therefore, if your septic tank is still discharging into a waterway, then you could be breaking the law, and the relevant authorities could soon catch up with you. To avoid getting on the wrong side of the law, you need to call a reliable septic tanks services provider, such as Septic Tanks North West, for guidance on what you need to do.

What Can You Do About It?

If your septic tank is not compliant with the law, there are two things that you can do to ensure that you do not get in trouble:

Consider Connecting to the Main Sewer or Building a Small Water Treatment Plant.

Perhaps, the reason your home has a septic tank is that there was no nearby sewer when it was built. If that has changed and the public sewer line is near your home today, you can consider connecting your home to the sewer line. In fact, if your home is not more than thirty meters away from a public sewer, you cannot be allowed to replace your septic tank with a small water treatment plant. But if your home is within 30 meters of the main sewer line, but you cannot connect to it for some reason, (e.g. there is a stream or river in the way), you can be given a permit to build a small water treatment plant. A smaller water treatment plant works like a septic tank, only that it treats the wastewater to a much higher degree.

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Discharge the Waste Water Into the Ground

If your septic tank has been draining into surface water, you can replace it with a small water treatment plant if the option of connecting your home to the public sewer is unrealistic. Alternatively, you can change its design to make it drain into a drain field. The drain field, in this case, must meet the British standards for it to safely disperse wastewater into the ground without causing water pollution. For instance, the drain field should not be close to a watercourse.

The Bottom Line

Overall, it is apparent that if your home uses a septic tank, then you are bound by the 2020 septic tank regulations, and therefore, there may be changes you may have to make to comply with the law. If you are not sure if your septic tank’s design is compliant with the existing regulations, you need to consult a septic tanks expert. If you are looking for a dependable septic tank company in North West England, Septic Tanks North West is an excellent choice. Feel free to contact us today for more information about the new septic tank regulations.

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Updated: September 30, 2021

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