Septic Tank vs. Cesspit: What’s the Difference and Which Do I Need?

By - Max
24.08.23 02:48 PM

Oftentimes, septic tanks and cesspit tankers can get confused. A person may think they need a septic tank when in fact they need a cesspit, or vice versa. In some cases, the two are taken to mean the same thing, with both having the same function. Of course, if not immediately obvious, there is a difference.

Septic Tanks and Cesspits

Both septic tanks and cesspits collect and store wastewater and sewage from toilets, sinks, showers, and other household sources on the site of the property where they are used rather than being connected to a centralised sewage network. This makes them suitable for rural or remote areas where such infrastructure could be unavailable or impractical.

The Difference

The difference between these two tanker types is that cesspits do not process or treat wastage in any way. Cesspits generally fill up faster and require emptying more frequently than septic tanks. Once emptied, a specialised vehicle transports the waste to an external treatment facility.

In septic tankswaste flows from the drains of the connected property and into the tank. Waste water is then broken down by anaerobic bacteria, separating oils and solids. The waste water then escapes through a filtered outlet towards the drainage field where it can be treated and left to seep into the ground. Aerobic bacteria in the surrounding soil completes the process and takes in the clean, filtered water. This leaves only refuse in the tank.
A septic tank submerged in a hole that has been dug in the ground.
A cesspit half buried in a large hole in the ground.

Which Do I Need?

Whether you need septic tank or cesspit services depends on what your specific needs are. As you understand the differences between the two, you should ask yourself:

How much waste is typically coming out of the property?
Is there enough soil in the surrounding area to accommodate the water released by a septic tank?

There are a great deal of factors to take into consideration when it comes to investing in a tanker for your property. As established, one cannot be swapped out for the other as each require specific conditions and regulations. It is advisable to do some reading before deciding which, if any, is right for you. At Grey-Water, our professionals are seasoned in the emptying of septic tanks and cesspits. Give us a call today to see what we can do for you.