Effluent Pumpout Services


Effluent pumpout services are conducted to premises that have a contained effluent collection system and the effluent is removed on a regular cycle. If the collection tank is not emptied the contents will overflow and cause environmental and health hazards.

Effluent Pumpout

New Effluent Pumpout Customers

If you have recently installed a septic tank (effluent pumpout system) on your property and would like to commence a regular effluent pumpout service through Shoalhaven Water's contractor, please complete our online Effluent Pumpout Registration

On registration, Shoalhaven City Council will levy an effluent charge on your Rates Notice which covers all scheduled pumpouts for the year removing up to 2,500 litres per service. Please take some time to review our Effluent Fees & Charges.

Scheduled Pumpout Services

A range of scheduled effluent pumpout service frequency options are available that vary from twice weekly to eight weekly. The pumpout frequency will be dependent on the size of the tank and how many people use the system. 

If you would like to increase or reduce the number of scheduled pumpouts you receive simply follow this link and complete our Change of Frequency Request. Upon receipt of request, fees and charges will be adjusted in your Rates Notice.

Extra Pumpout Services

An extra service can help avoid problems especially around holiday periods when occupancy is generally highest. They are usually performed within 3 working days and this service will incur an additional charge to you.

To book an extra service you can:

How do I arrange an emergency pumpout?

For an emergency pumpout service call us immediately. Emergency pumpouts are performed within 24 hours of notification and will incur an extra charge alongside the standard removal fee.

Our guide to avoid an emergency service is:
  • Avoid overflows by monitoring the level of contents in the tank 
  • Schedule an extra service if required 
  • Talk to visitors about the need to reduce discharges into the system.

Effluent Pumpout - Fees and Charges

Shoalhaven City Council charge an annual effluent fee on your Rates Notice which covers all scheduled pumpouts for the year removing up to 2,500 litres per service.

Further fees will be issued for:
  • volumes removed at the scheduled service which are over 2,500 litres, 
  • extra services booked, or 
  • emergency pumpouts requests. 

Follow this link to view the Effluent Removal - Fees and Charges

General Service Information

On each property leading from the effluent collection tank to the front yard is a pump out service pipe (standpipe).

  • The service pipe should be clear from obtrusion's and within easy access for the contractor to connect the hose from their tanker, while parked on the road. Inaccessible service pipes may be requested to be relocated. 
  • If the system has a booster switch, customers must ensure the switch is accessible and in safe working order. 

Once the pumpout has been performed the contractor will:

  • Leave a coloured docket in the letter box showing the total amount removed as well as the readings on the gauges before and after the pump out. 
  • If a letter box is not available, it is a good idea to leave a tin or box near the service pipe (standpipe) where dockets can be safely stored. 
  • The contractor is required to ‘round down’ the level on the truck's sight gauges to the nearest 100 litres mark at both the before and after pumping read.

Monitor pumpout volumes and readings

Shoalhaven Water recommends that customers confirm the volume extracted by reading the sight gauges attached to each tanker and comparing the levels against the docket. Arrangements can be made for scheduled services to be conducted at reasonable specified times to enable customers to attend and sight the gauges. 

Volumes can be checked within the tank at any time by lifting the inspection port or lid on top of the tank. There should also be a 'dip stick' on the top of the tank. 

During excessive rain periods, rainwater may infiltrate the tanks on a property causing an increase in the volume of effluent in the collection well. Keeping a tank lid clear of grass, plants and weeds is a good way of caring for the system. If cracks in the lid are noticed, it is important to get them fixed by using some form of filler to maintain the watertight integrity of the system.