Keep your Canterbury property clean and safe with expert septic tank cleaning and maintenance

Superior septic tank emptying, pumping and cleaning in the Canterbury region

Mainland Waste aims to make septic tank cleaning as safe and eco-friendly as possible

Established in 1990, Mainland Waste is a local Canterbury owned business which specialises in meeting the liquid waste collection and disposal needs of all sectors of the market.

With over 25 years experience, Mainland Waste are able to handle all your waste water disposal and liquid waste removal needs. Customer service is our focus and we are always furthering our knowledge to keep up with the growing demands of septic tank treatment and liquid waste requirements.

The team at Mainland Waste are working today for a cleaner tomorrow as we care about the environment when dealing with hazardous liquid waste management. We are NZWWA Liquid and Hazardous Waste Code Compliant with all liquid waste being tracked and disposed of correctly in approved and monitored liquid waste disposal sites.

Contact us to arrange your quote for septic tank servicing or maintenance, or book our team for septic tank emptying or cleaning throughout the Canterbury region.

septic tank emptying canterbury

What you need to know about owning a septic tank

How a septic tank works

Waste liquid from your house flows to the septic tank which is usually buried under the ground. In the tank it separates into three layers – the fats called scum which float on the surface, the liquid waste also known as effluent and a layer of solids on the bottom which is called sludge.

The effluent is treated by bacteria in the tank which can also help to break down some of the sludge.

The partially treated effluent moves from the tank to the disposal field also known as the absorption field which is usually covered in soil. Here it is released through perforated pipes and is broken down further by natural processes and eventually absorbed back into the surrounding ground.

What are the hazards of a septic tank that is not working properly

If a septic tank fails then it can result in partially treated, or even untreated wastewater reaching the environment. This can cause environmental damage to surrounding land and waterways. It can also increase the risk of health issues from drinking, swimming in or eating fish from contaminated water.

Why a septic tank fails

A tank can fail for a number of reasons including:

  • Tree or plant roots causing problems in the disposal field
  • The system not being located in the right place or poorly designed
  • A build up of sludge in the bottom of the septic tank
  • A lack of good bacteria in the tank
  • Pipes being broken due to heavy vehicles running over them

How to tell if your septic tank is failing

If your tank is failing one of the first things you might notice is a nasty smell. You may also notice your drains or toilets running slowly or not emptying and you may see pools of water or damp areas around your disposal field.

Do’s and don’ts of keeping your septic tank running well

  • Do try not to put too much water into the system – limit baths and showers, use appliances like washing machines wisely and check plumbing for leaks.
  • Don’t put items such as disposable nappies or sanitary towels down the toilet.
  • Don’t put food grease down the kitchen sink.
  • Do keep downpipes away from the disposal area or tank area to avoid it getting too wet.
  • Do plant shallow rooted plants or dense grass over your disposal area.
  • Don’t put harsh chemicals into the system including paints, bleaches and harsh cleaning chemicals.
  • Do use biodegradable detergents if possible.
  • Don’t use waste disposal unit or insinkerator or if you do use them sparingly.
  • Do get your septic tank pumped and cleaned regularly

Mainland Waste is your septic tank maintenance specialist in Canterbury

Keep your tank cleaner, and prevent health hazards by getting a regular septic tank service. It is more cost-effective to service your septic tank than to repair blocked drains and replace disposal fields.

You should book septic tank pumping and cleaning around every three years to avoid a build-up of sludge at the bottom of your tank and to eliminate anything that could be killing off the good bacteria in your tank.

To keep your septic tank working better, Mainland Waste also recommends using
Biogest Septic 
Tank Activator.

BioGest Septic Tank Activator

Cleaning chemicals and medications going into your tank can kill off the good bacteria needed to keep it running properly.

If your tank’s bacteria has become unbalanced, we now stock Biogest Septic Tank Activator which could solve your problem.

This comes in a water soluble sachet which can be dropped directly into your septic tank or dropped into your toilet and then flushed away the septic tank.

Biogest Septic Tank Activator sachets contain a range of microorganisms that boost the natural bacteria and fungal elements in your tank. For standard tanks one sachet a month is normally sufficient but this can be increased for tanks that need to have balanced restored, larger households using a lot of water, or households where many chemicals are used.

As part of our septic tank maintenance service, we can assess how efficient your system is and if necessary, put a sachet directly in the tank to kick start your system.

If you are looking for reliable septic tank cleaning in Canterbury – the team at Mainland Waste can help. Whether you are on a lifestyle block in Rolleston or a smallholding in Darfield if you need septic tank filter cleaning, pumping, emptying or treatment, talk to Mainland Waste. For commercial customers, we also offer a grease trap cleaning service and cesspit and stormwater drain cleaning.