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Leicester
Milton Keynes
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Cambridge
Peterborough

FAQs

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Here at Redstripe, we aim to provide every one of our customers in Kettering and the surrounding areas with as much information as possible so they know the precise service they require and what to expect from our professional and dedicated team.

Q: What can and cannot be put into our systems?
A:

You cannot put in the following:

  • Cooking oil and fat, motor oil, grease, antifreeze, brake fluid, etc. and any waste from kitchen disposal units.
  • Weed killer, insecticides, fungicides and chemicals used in the garden.
  • Paint, thinners, creosote, etc.
  • Photographic developing fluids, printing inks, etc.
  • DIY alcohol making waste.
  • Medicines.
  • Sanitary tools, wipes, nappies, rags, etc.

Although these items will not stop the microorganisms from working, they are prone to causing blockages in the drains and make routine de-sludging more difficult for our team. Should the system be fitted with a pump they can cause jamming of the impeller and motor failure.

Q: Will washing machine and dishwasher detergents cause a problem to the system?
A:

Under normal, everyday conditions and in moderation, these will have minimal effect on the system. However, excess use of biological detergents will kill the microorganisms that break down the waste materials.

Q: Will bleach, disinfectant, sterilising fluid, floor cleaners etc cause a problem to the system?
A:

Again, under normal use circumstances these will have no effect on the system, but pouring bleach straight into the system will damage it.

Q: There is a smell coming from the tank, inspection covers or drains, what could the problem be?
A:

This is normally caused by a build-up of waste within a concentrated part of the system. A smell coming from the tank is a sign that the system is due to be emptied. A smell coming from the inspection covers or drains is often caused by a full or partial blockage that is retaining decaying material within the system.

Q: Who is responsible for maintaining a septic tank?
A:

If the tank serves just one property, it is the owner’s responsibility. Should the tank be served by two or more properties, the responsibility should be shared, even if the tank and drainage system are wholly located on one single property. It is always wise to have a legally binding agreement in place between all properties concerned.

Q: A neighbour has a septic tank that is overflowing and they refuse to get it emptied, what do I do?
A:

The Local Environmental Health department have the power to legally enforce any person or persons responsible for causing a risk to public health to take the appropriate remedial action against the problem. Should they fail to do this, they can arrange to have the work carried out and charge it to the owner. The Environmental Agency also have the power to fine owners or occupants who cause pollution to the surrounding areas.

Q: I rent the property, is it the landlord’s responsibility to have the tank emptied?
A:

No, the responsibility will normally be written into the tenancy agreement. It is a good idea to ask for proof that the tank has been emptied before moving into a rented property, and then agree to have regular and final waste removals carried out. Your landlord may then require you to present proof that these procedures have been carried out.

Q: I am about to purchase a property with a septic tank/treatment plant, what action should I take?
A:

Always ask for proof that the system has been maintained and desludged on a regular basis. Ask the owners to have the system emptied before moving in so you can get your surveyor or independent engineer to correctly inspect the system. A poorly maintained system could cost you thousands to put right.

Q: My septic tank was emptied recently and is already overflowing from the lid or inspection cover, what does this mean?
A:

Most people wrongly assume that the tank was not emptied correctly by the contractor, yet this is rarely the case and it is usually caused by a fault in the system. Should liquid be overflowing from an inspection cover near the house, there will be a blockage between the tank and the cover.

Should the liquid be overflowing from the tank lid, there is a problem with the soakaway (drainfield), meaning it may be blocked. A soakaway operating in good conditions with a tank that has been regularly emptied should work for about 20-30 years. The soakaway may also be sitting in saturated ground due to a rising water table, this will prevent excess water from the tank draining away and can often backfill the tank.

Q: I have a septic tank that does not need emptying
A:

Not true. All systems require periodic desludging, as the waste will not totally degrade. Failure to have a system correctly desludged is normally false economy, resulting in solids entering the soakaway system. This will, in turn, shorten or terminate the working life of the soakaway system.

Q: How often should I have my tank emptied?
A:

An average system in good condition for one property with two adults and two children living within it should require emptying every twelve months. Should another two adults move into the property, frequency will increase.

If you have any further questions regarding our first class waste management services, or to receive a competitive quote from one of our friendly team members, don’t hesitate to give us a call today.

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