Cesspit Maintenance

June 20, 2019

Best methods for maintaining a cesspit.

A cesspit is usually only used in circumstances where no other sewage treatment option is available. This is usually if the soil on your property fails a soakaway test or you have no watercourse or water drain that you can discharge sewage into.

Generally speaking, cesspits are only installed on a temporary basis, but even if one is installed for the short term. It is still vital they are properly maintained. Cesspits are large tanks with collect all chemical toilet waste.

In order to properly maintain your cesspit, it must be frequently emptied, usually around every 45 days or so – depending on the size of your household. Additional maintenance required on a cesspit is ensuring the external structure of the cesspit is intact. Often old bricks can become loose or damaged which can cause the cesspit to leak. Overflowing or leaking cesspits is an offence under the 1936 Public Health Act. To add to the importance of maintaining your cesspit, if it should leak and contaminate a watercourse, the Environment Agency can take legal action under the Water Resources Act of 1991 – which as a maximum penalty can result in a fine of £20,000 and 3 months imprisonment.

Buying a house with a cesspit.

If you are buying a house which had a cesspit it is therefore crucial to get a proper drainage survey completed, on top of your normal pre-purchase survey. This will not only ensure peace of mind but could save a lot of money in the long term.
Owning a property with a cesspit needs to be carefully considered as it can result in an annual cost of around £2,000 for maintenance and emptying. For the perfect rural home, to some, this is a small cost. But definitely, one to be aware of!

Ensure you get a reputable drainage company onside to help out with the cesspit emptying. This can only be done by a licensed waste disposal contractor, or if your cesspit requires a repair – Crofts Drainage Solutions is on hand to help!

Always be careful when walking or driving on or around a cesspit as it can damage the bricks around it. It is also essential that the cover is properly maintained and only opened by a trained professional.