How Proactive Wastewater Tank Maintenance Supports Optimized Wastewater Treatment

December 6, 2023
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How strategic wastewater tank maintenance supports optimized wastewater treatment, reducing lost capacity, and improving efficacy and effectiveness.

In wastewater treatment, the key to optimal performance lies in cutting-edge technology and the meticulous upkeep of crucial wastewater infrastructure. An often-overlooked aspect of infrastructure upkeep is wastewater tank maintenance, which, when neglected, can lead to:

  • Lost capacity
  • Increased carbon footprint
  • Hindered water quality parameters

Lost Capacity: A Hidden Consequence When Wastewater Tank Maintenance is Underserved

Wastewater tanks, essential components in treatment facilities, can suffer from diminished capacity when not regularly cleaned and maintained. The accumulation of grit and debris can significantly reduce the effective volume, limiting the facility’s ability to treat wastewater efficiently. The result? Overloaded systems, decreased treatment efficacy, and potential environmental repercussions.

Carbon Footprint Concerns

Neglecting tank maintenance can have a greater impact than just reduced capacity. The buildup of grit on air diffusers that are crucial for aeration in many treatment processes, can elevate energy consumption. As the diffusers struggle to push air through the accumulated grit, energy efficiency decreases, leading to an unnecessary spike in the facility’s carbon footprint.

The chart below shows an example of a smaller, rural facility in Clewiston, Florida, with a capacity of 1.5 MGD, realizing tangible financial benefits from adopting this innovative technology. Their experience yielded remarkable monthly energy cost savings ranging from $1,000 to $2,000 due to effective tank cleaning and management.

Wastewater Tank Maintenance Improves Efficiency at Florida Utility

Water Quality Parameters at Risk

In addition to having a negative impact on the environment, compromised tank performance can hinder crucial water quality parameters. Nitrogen and phosphorus removal, vital for preventing water pollution and eutrophication, can be significantly impeded. Reduced nitrogen and phosphorus removal threatens the efficiency of the treatment process and the quality of the water released back into the environment.



Eutrophication occurs when a body of water receives an excessive nutrient load, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen. This often results in an overgrowth of algae. As the algae die and decompose, oxygen is depleted from the water.

Source: U.S. Geological Survey (.gov)

Restoration vs. New Construction: Cost-Effective Wisdom

As treatment facilities face increasing demands, the idea of building new capacity might seem like a viable solution. However, restoring lost capacity through proactive and predictive maintenance proves to be a more cost-effective strategy. Regular cleaning and upkeep can prevent costly expansions, offering a sustainable approach to meeting growing wastewater treatment requirements.

Conclusion: A Sustainable Path Forward

Maintaining the integrity of tanks should be a top priority in the quest for efficient and environmentally conscious wastewater treatment. The ripple effects of neglecting this crucial aspect of infrastructure can be felt in diminished capacity, an increased carbon footprint, and compromised water quality. By embracing a proactive and predictive maintenance schedule, treatment facilities can ensure optimal performance, reduce environmental impact, and pave the way for a sustainable future in wastewater management.

How SediVision Can Help with Wastewater Tank Maintenance

SediVision can help by offering a non-invasive scan of tanks to determine critical areas of concern that require tank cleaning, such as those shown in the examples below. Contact us today to learn more and request a free quote.

Wastewater tank mapping SediVision

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Author Notes
Megan Ross, PE, ENV SP, Vice President, SediVision, LLC

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