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22-02-2008, 12:10   #1
MickLimk
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Soak Pit vs. Septic Tank

Just wondering what's acceptable to run directly to a soak pit that doesn't need to run through the septic tank and on to the percolation area.

Is a soak pit strictly for rain water only or can other water sources (eg. washing machine, bathroom sink) run into the same gulley that takes the rain water down pipe? If this 'grey water' can be run straight to a soak pit, is a grease trap needed?

Thanks in advance,
Mick
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22-02-2008, 12:40   #2
smashey
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I think you'll find soak pits aren't allowed anymore.
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22-02-2008, 12:56   #3
Slates
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I think you'll find soak pits aren't allowed anymore.
Soakpits can be used for rainwater and thats it, all foul and grey water should run to the watertreatment system. Its very rare to get planning with just a septic tank
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22-02-2008, 13:13   #4
MickLimk
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The house was built a couple of years ago and does indeed have a septic tank and not a treatment/biocycle unit. There's a percolation area running from that (I hope!) and I haven't had any problems so far with that end of things.

The issue I'm having right now is with a separate soak pit that was put in place for the rain water but is also currently taking washing machine waste water and the drain from a bathroom sink. This is starting to back up and I'm thinking that this should never have been done in the first place even if it was a couple of years ago it was put in.

What's my best solution here? Do I need to redo these drains so that only rain water is heading for the soak-pit or is that asking for more trouble? I seem to remember in my parents house that they had problems with remnants of washing power causing them drainage problems some years back. All suggestions welcome.

Thanks,
Mick
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22-02-2008, 13:23   #5
Avns1s
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Originally Posted by MickLimk View Post
The house was built a couple of years ago and does indeed have a septic tank and not a treatment/biocycle unit. There's a percolation area running from that (I hope!) and I haven't had any problems so far with that end of things.

The issue I'm having right now is with a separate soak pit that was put in place for the rain water but is also currently taking washing machine waste water and the drain from a bathroom sink. This is starting to back up and I'm thinking that this should never have been done in the first place even if it was a couple of years ago it was put in.

What's my best solution here? Do I need to redo these drains so that only rain water is heading for the soak-pit or is that asking for more trouble? I seem to remember in my parents house that they had problems with remnants of washing power causing them drainage problems some years back. All suggestions welcome.

Thanks,
Mick

Only rainwater should run into the soakaway. Grease and Detergent from sinks, washing machine, etc., line the sides of the soakaway with a film / crust that water cannot penetrate, hence the backing up.

You'll have to replumb those drains, i'm afraid.
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22-02-2008, 13:25   #6
muffler
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All waste water should discharge to your septic tank - that is everything except rainwater. It was a common enough practice down the years for people to have a soakpit for the bath and sink waste.

You need to pick up the waste water from the washing machine, bath etc and reroute it into the nearest foul water manhole or if levels dont permit this you can pipe directly to the inlet manhole of the tank.
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22-02-2008, 16:43   #7
MickLimk
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Only rainwater should run into the soakaway. Grease and Detergent from sinks, washing machine, etc., line the sides of the soakaway with a film / crust that water cannot penetrate, hence the backing up.

You'll have to replumb those drains, i'm afraid.
Thought that might be the case alright. It probably also means that I've already started to clog up my soak pit and may have to go digging there too as I've no way to clean out that. Ba**s of a job!

On the brighter side, changing my washing machine shouldn't be too bad. There's a foul water stack outside a different wall in the utility that I should be able to tap into. Hopefully just a matter of a 40mm core bit and a couple of fittings. Bathroom sink is another matter...

On a slightly similar train of thought, if I were to put in a sink in my utility with a waste disposal unit for food scraps etc., can I run this straight into my foul water line? Any known problems with these?

Thanks again,
Mick
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22-02-2008, 16:47   #8
smashey
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I think you'll find soak pits aren't allowed anymore.
I just checked this out there and it would appear it is a Donegal thing. Something to do with the amount of rainfall we get.

Thought I was going mad and then all your answers had me paranoid.
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22-02-2008, 16:52   #9
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On a slightly similar train of thought, if I were to put in a sink in my utility with a waste disposal unit for food scraps etc., can I run this straight into my foul water line? Any known problems with these?

Thanks again,
Mick
You could just buy a dog for disposal of the food scraps?!

(Couldn't resist - sorry I can't answer your question)
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23-02-2008, 11:14   #10
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This is an American leaflet but has some general information on septic tanks including the effect of waste disposal units. (If the diagram is anything to go by they seem to be in favour of having a dog as well).
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