2020 Septic Tank Regulations – Are you compliant?

Septic tank installation

Even though the 2020 septic tank regulation came out in 2015, many are still not compliant. The main change in this regulation is to stop wastewater flowing straight into the streams, rivers and any other local watercourse. This will, in turn, reduce the amount of pollution from sewage in local watercourses.

Does this include you?

This regulation has taken place for a few years so all new septic tanks are already compliant to this regulation. But it now requires that everyone with a septic tank also abides by this regulation. You will be able to find out if you need to make amends to your septic tank system by contacting the company that normally maintains your septic tank.

What to do next

All of the above measures all require planning permission so it is best to start working as soon as possible. The government requires everyone to follow the 2020 septic tank regulation by the 1st January 2020.

If you do need to make changes to your septic tank to become compliant to the 2020 septic tank regulation, there are three main ways you can do it.

Septic Drain Field

You can install a septic drain field. It is an disposal area that removes the impurities from the liquid in the septic tank. It removes any of the waste by dispersing it into the ground without causing any pollution.

Mains Sewers

If you have a mains sewers 30m within your area, you cannot install a septic drain field and you will have to connect to the mains sewers instead. This may not always be possible as the sewer could already be in full capacity. In this case, you would have to apply for a permit.

Sewage Treatment Plant

There is always the option to replace your septic tank with a sewage treatment plant. As they produce much cleaner water, you can still have your pipes running straight to a watercourse. This would just mean replacing the tank and depending on the set up of your septic tank, could be a lot easier.

Replacing or maintaining your septic tank

If you are compliant with the 2020 septic tank regulation, then Maintain Drains can maintain your tank to ensure it stays in top condition. Our services also include regular cleaning and repairing your tank when necessary.

If you need to replace your tank to stay compliant, Maintain Drains can help. We provide a range of services and our expert team are always happy to help. Contact us to find out what we can do for you.


How do septic tank regulations affect me?

Septic tank regulations may dictate requirements such as minimum distances from water sources, proper sizing and construction of septic tanks, regular maintenance and inspection schedules, and proper disposal of sewage effluent. Compliance with septic tank regulations is essential for property owners with septic tank systems to avoid fines, penalties, and potential health hazards associated with improper sewage disposal.

Are septic tank regulations regularly changing?

Yes, septic tank regulations can change periodically in response to evolving environmental concerns, advancements in technology, and changes in local or national legislation. Regulatory changes may be prompted by factors such as new research findings on the environmental impacts of septic tank systems, updates to industry standards and best practices, or changes in government policies related to wastewater management.

What are the key septic tank regulations I need to be aware of?

Key septic tank regulations that property owners need to be aware of typically include requirements regarding installation, maintenance, and operation of septic tank systems. Some important regulations may include:

  1. Permitting and approval processes for septic tank installation, including site assessments and soil testing to ensure proper placement and sizing of the system.
  2. Regular inspection and maintenance requirements, such as periodic pumping of the septic tank and inspection of components to prevent malfunctions and ensure proper functioning.
  3. Disposal regulations for sewage, including restrictions on discharging into water bodies, requirements for proper treatment and disposal of wastewater, and prohibitions on certain types of chemicals or substances in the sewage system.
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