Onsite wastewater management systems (Septic Tank Systems) are used on residential, community, rural and commercial premises. In each state of Australia the regulations for a onsite wastewater treatment can be very different. That’s why we have added all the councils we have dealt with since 1996 with links to help you understand your local council septic tank regulations.
Septic Tank Systems are designed to treat, then recycle or dispose of:
- Greywater, which comes from showers, baths, hand basins, washing machines, laundry troughs and kitchens
- Blackwater, which is toilet waste
- Sewage, which is combined greywater and blackwater
- Organic Waste – Only our Worm Farm Septic System can handle all your household organic waste.
Septic tank systems must perform effectively and be well managed to minimise risks to public health and the environment. They must also meet your local council septic tank regulations. The requirements on you septic system depend on the source of the wastewater, site constraints, treatment method and the quality of effluent needed for the end uses of the treated water.
Common Septic Tank Regulations
- Wastewater treated to primary quality is only suitable for disposal below ground via soil absorption trenches, mounds and evapo-transpiration beds or trenches.
- Wastewater treated to secondary quality can also be dispersed to land via pressure-compensating subsurface irrigation.
- Greywater treated to advanced-secondary quality can be used in the home for flushing toilets and in washing machines. It can also be used for surface and subsurface irrigation.
- You will need local council approval to install the system.
- You will also need approval to operate your septic system.
Care and Operation of Your Septic Tank
If you do not have a Worm Farm Septic Tank these tips for the care and operation of your septic tank maybe helpful.
- Restrict the use of germicides (such as strong detergents, disinfectants, toilet cleaners and bleaches), as they will kill the bacteria which makes the septic tank work.
- Use soapy water to clean toilets and other fixtures
- Use only detergents that have low alkaline salts and chlorine levels.
- Odours may occur on installation or after addition of large quantity of germicide. If this happens, flush a cup of lime down the toilet each day until odours abate.
- Use of proprietary or chemical additives is not recommended at any time for septic systems – except for lime when used to remove odours.
- Do not flush sanitary napkins or disposable nappies down the system.
- Minimise the amounts of oil and fat flushed into the system.
- Use a sink strainer to restrict food scraps entering the septic system. Do not use garbage disposal units.
- Fill tank with water to reduce odours on start up or after desludging tanks. They should not be washed or disinfected after desludging.
- Ensure the tank and disposal field are not built over or disturbed.
- Inspect the system at least annually and desludge the tank at least once every three years, or as otherwise directed by the council.