Introducing septic systems

Septic tanks are small scale sewage treatment systems used in commercial and domestic premises which do not have a direct connection to the public sewerage network. Regular maintenance of septic tanks should be a priority to make sure the system continues to function properly and that it does not cause a pollution incident.

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Regulations and legislation for septic systems

New rules came into force on 1st January 2015 which specify that septic tanks must not discharge directly to a waterway after 1 January 2020.

Septic tank ‘operators’ (ie owners or persons responsible) must make alternative arrangements by that date — or before if they plan to sell the property.

Permitted alternatives are:

To create a drainage field which disperses effluent safely into the ground without causing pollution. This must be correctly designed and built to relevant British Standards.

To connect to a mains sewer: the distance to it and the geography of the land will dictate whether this is possible.

To install a sewage treatment plant (also known as a package treatment plant) instead of the septic tank. This treats the liquid to a higher standard so that it is safe for discharge to a surface watercourse. Note: this may require a permit.

If you currently have a septic tank, you should be absolutely clear about your responsibilities and the changes. Visit https://www.gov.uk/permits-you-need-for-septic-tanks or for more information on best practice for septic tanks please click and download our septic tank leaflet.

Common problems and our solutions

There are two common causes of septic tank problems: infrequent maintenance and inadequate installation. At Lanes, we regularly resolve both issues for our commercial customers, offering emptying, cleaning and installation services, all covered by our registered waste handler credentials.

Septic tank emptying and cleaning

Our expert local teams use powerful vacuumation and tankering equipment to carry out safe, efficient and environmentally-sensitive septic tank emptying and cleaning. And we’ll do it at a time that suits you best.



Septic Tank Installation

Lanes installs septic tanks responsibly, and with minimal disruption, offering regular service maintenance agreements and back-up or blockage avoidance advice after the initial installation.





Download our best practice guide for operators of septic tanks.



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With a nationwide network of depots, we are never far away when you need us the most. No location is too isolated, and each team at every depot is as experienced and knowledgeable as any other Lanes team.

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