Converting cesspit to pump station

A cesspit is an old fashioned solution to dealing with waste water, be it foul or storm water.


Most were installed in an era when compact, highly efficient pumps, and the associated control systems and ‎mounting systems, were not available. For some, having to call a tanker in, is part of life's routine chores and costs, without questioning if there is a better way. A bit like collecting fresh water from the well, milking the cow, or going to the 'privy' at the bottom of the garden. Well, there is.

Pump station

​Now, with a wide range of powerful, reliable pumps and installation expertise you can have a wastewater handling system that is effective, unobtrusive and reliable. Such a system can be retrofitted to a cesspit to deal with this wastewater issue. It will mean you will no longer incur tanker emptying costs, and take away the 'who forgot to call a tanker' question when the basement or car park is running with sewage.

There are a number of factors to consider first:

Trained pump engineers
  • If you only have to get a tanker to empty out the cesspit every couple of years then the payback period may not justify the outlay. Look at your current costs and decide what period of payback you are looking for.

  • How far away is the main drain or sewer? While pumps are able to deliver huge distances, the further it has to pump the bigger and more expensive the pump has to be. Also, a rising main (pipe from the new pump station to the sewer) will have to be installed. This may involve open trench digging, or a moling procedure may be more appropriate. In some cases it can be run overground.

  • Getting approval and arranging for connection to the sewer may need to be done. If there is already a suitable drain elsewhere on your property this can be utilised, taking care that when the pump turns on it doesn’t cause flooding at inspection chambers where the inflow is higher than the gravity drain can manage.

  • An electricity supply will also be needed. While a single phase (240v) system is perfectly adequate often, a three phase (420v) system is generally preferable.

  • The actual installation should to be done by trained qualified persons. These cesspits are dangerous confined spaces and special procedures and equipment are needed to enter the chamber safely, as well as the pump station equipment itself being specialist.

  • Furthermore, the tank will need to be emptied and cleaned to enable the works to take place. For obvious reasons, the inflow to the cesspit must be stopped while engineers are in the chamber. This would normally be for one day, but depends on the size of the system to be installed.

  • Give some thought to when this would cause the least disruption to your facility. It may be that to have the works done at a weekend, or at night may cause less inconvenience to you.

If you have a cesspit and you're not sure of the best option for you, get in touch to find out what a pump station can offer.

Pump station installation