Sludge is a by-product of everyday living. Every time you wash the dishes, wash your clothes or flush the toilet, solids are deposited into your septic tank or the primary chamber of your on-site wastewater treatment system (AWTS).  Once in the septic tank or primary chamber the solids separate and sink to the bottom of the tank to form the sludge layer, the light material floats to the top and forms a crust.

Water in between the sludge layer and the Crust is called primary effluent which passes out off the septic tank and into your trench’s or in the case of an AWTS into the next stage of achieves secondary quality treatment.

A garbage disposal is not recommended on septic & AWTS systems. If you have one in your sink sludge management becomes even more important.

If the depth of sludge becomes too high in the chamber, the settlement process fails and high levels of sludge (Suspended Solids) pass into your trenches, causing them to fail prematurely and in the case of AWTS systems,the next stage of treatment is compromised and the suspended solids are pumped into your irrigation and often causes pump failure and blockages.

These guide sheets allow you to gain an idea of the pump out intervals based upon the size of your septic or primary chamber and the number of people residing in the house. For AWTS systems it is best to ask your service agent to advise you during service if it needs de-sludging. It is far cheaper than replacing pumps, blowers and subsurface irrigation as well as being much safer for your family.

Please SHARE this information with your family, friends and neighbour’s.

You could save them $1000’s of dollars in expensive onsite sewage system repair bills.

 Septic Tank Guide


WWT Guide