Frequently Asked Questions
Who installs my Ecosafe Treatment Plant?
Only Ecosafe carries out the construction and installation of the Plant. Installation CANNOT be carried out by any agent. Each installation is site-specific and the design for your unit takes advantage of the natural site conditions. The Ecosafe Plant is not a pre-fabricated system. We have qualified teams carrying out installations each day. The installation of a domestic plant is usually completed in one day.
How much will my Ecosafe Plant cost?
As each Ecosafe is constructed on site, the site conditions (eg gradient, sub-surface conditions and accessibility) and the site location determine the cost. When you contact us, we will supply you with a quote in an Info Pak based on your general site location, subject to a site inspection by Ecosafe and subject to the Site & Soil Report being provided.
Do I require Council Approval?
Yes. Council Compliance Permit must be obtained prior to installation of ALL on-site sewerage treatment plants. You will need appropriate forms to be lodged with Council along with your Site & Soil Evaluation Report. Ecosafe will provide the Forms as part of the Info Pak. Alternatively, they may be downloaded from individual Council websites and Form 1 is available from the Qld Govt. Ecosafe is happy to personally assist with this Council Application stage.
What is a “Site & Soil Evaluation Report”?
The Site & Soil Evaluation Report designs the overall on-site sewerage requirements for your site including whether you require a Secondary or Advanced Secondary Plant and a specific design of the Land Application Area.
It is done by a Site & Soil Evaluator (often a Geotechnical Engineer) following soil permeability and other site-specific investigations.
When you contact Ecosafe we will provide you with the names of Site & Soil Evaluators in your district.
This Site & Soil Evaluation Report is different and separate to the Soil Tests & Report you / your builder may obtain for the footings / foundations of your new dwelling.
What is the “Land Application Area” or LAA?
After the Ecosafe Treatment Plant accepts and treats the wastewater from your dwelling, the treated water must be “applied” to the land. This is called the “Land Application Area”, or the “LAA”. There are many methods of “land application”, the most popular being a Surface Spray Irrigation System. Ecosafe’s high quality of effluent makes it perfectly suited to Surface Spray. Other methods include a Shallow Sub-surface Irrigation System and Absorption Beds. The Ecosafe Treatment plant is compatible with all methods of land application. When the Site & Soil Evaluation Report has been received by Ecosafe, we will provide a quote for installation of the LAA.
Will I need the Secondary or Advanced Secondary Ecosafe plant?
This is also determined at the time of obtaining your Site and Soil Evaluation Report. The report will specify whether a Secondary or Advanced Secondary plant is required for your site. An Advanced Secondary plant may be required if you are close to a watercourse / dam or if there is insufficient depth of soil.
Is the cost of installation of the “Land Application Area” included in the cost of the Ecosafe Treatment Plant?
Because there are many possible methods of Land Application Area, Ecosafe is unable to provide a quote for this part of the work until the Site & Soil Evaluation Report is examined. However, our knowledge of your local Council requirements and your advices will often enable us to provide a “ball park” amount, pending receipt of the Site & Soil Evaluation Report.
What happens to my Ecosafe Plant in the event of power failure?
As the Ecosafe plant has only one mechanical component and adequate built-in storage, in the event you may continue to dispose of household wastewater as usual for up to 3-4 days.
What happens if the irrigation pump fails?
Ecosafe is the only system on the market where a mechanical component failure does not constitute a ‘state of emergency” requiring immediate remedial action. Hence there are no unsightly warning lights or alarms mounted on the Ecosafe unit. Although rare, if the irrigation pump should fail, the Ecosafe unit can still accept and treat the volume of wastewater as usual for 3-4 days.
Is there a Warranty on the irrigation pump?
Yes. There is a two year manufacturer’s warranty on the irrigation pump, which includes labour cost of replacement.
Is the Ecosafe Plant suitable if I have only stand-alone solar power?
Yes. As the only component of the Plant requiring power is the irrigation pump, you may allow the treated effluent in the Pumpwell to build up, and to daily operate the irrigation pump manually at a convenient time when power to other electrical appliances is not required.
Is the Ecosafe Plant suitable if I wish to go on holidays, or have extended periods of non-usage?
Yes. The microbiological culture within the moist sand filter will survive for long periods of non-usage, until further organic material is again available as sustenance. No additional re-activation is necessary.
Ecosafe’s Aerobic Sand Filtration system -v- Prefabricated Aerated Systems
Ecosafe’s Aerobic Sand filtration system uses a totally natural method of achieving “aeration”. The Ecosafe plant takes advantage of natural site conditions and uses the natural and passive processes of gravity and hydraulic displacement, to ensure minimal maintenance requirements. It is the most energy efficient system available.
In contrast, the compact prefabricated aerated systems achieves “aeration” by mechanical means and requires an air-blower which operates continuously / up to 24 hours each day. Such systems have continuous replacement costs, high electricity usage, noise (from the air-blower) and odour (from the exhaust vent on the tank).
Ecosafe is the totally natural wastewater treatment system.
We invite you to compare. Please use our worksheet!
What are the ongoing expenses for an Ecosafe Plant?
The on-going expenses are:
- Annual Service – Approximately $175
- Cost of power to operate the pump – approximately $10 a year.
- Cost of desludging of the Primary Tank (at intervals between 5 – 9 years) from a local contractor.
What cleaning products can I use in the Ecosafe Plant?
The natural biological principles used in the Ecosafe system require that only biodegradable material is acceptable for treatment.
The Ecosafe system has sufficient capacity and robustness to accept the usual household products such as soaps and detergents provided they are used in moderate quantities.
However the primary treatment of waste in the Primary Tank is dependent on the presence of bacteria. Any household products that have disinfectant as an ingredient, will reduce bacteria, and of course, reduce the effectiveness of your primary tank.
In order to keep bacteria working in the primary tank:
- Avoid disinfectant products to optimize bacterial treatment;
- Do not use bleaches, whiteners, nappy soakers, spot removers and disinfectants;
- Do not put chemicals or paint down the drain;
- Do not dispose of chemicals arising from a hobby or home industry into the system, without first seeking the advice of the Environmental Officer of your local Council;
- Do not use acid cleaners, chlorinated products, sterilization agents (whiteners, nappi-sans and Milton)
- Do not dispose of unused antibiotics into the system;
- Do not dispose of any sanitary napkins into the Ecosafe system.
An updated Product Advice List is provided to you each year following your service. This List contains both “Products to Avoid” and “Safe Products”. We can also forward this List with your Info Pak, if requested.
If you have any other Questions, please Contact Us.