PHOTO of opening the septic pumper truck vacuum pump motor and controls Septic System Care: Septic Tank Pumping Procedure
Septic Pumper Truck Operation

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Operation of the septic pumper truck:

This document describes the steps in septic pumper truck operation during septic tank cleaning and service.

We describe the septic pumper truck operator's steps in opening the septic tank, placing the vacuum lines, checking the septic truck vacuum pump for proper operation before beginning the pumpout, the normal vacuum levels in the system during septic tank pumping, listening for jamming of the septic vacuum pump during pumping, connecting the vacuum hoses to the pumper truck, and beginning the septic tank vacuuming procedure.

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Septic Tank Pumper Truck Operation Procedures

PHOTO of a modern septic tank pumping truck

Septic pumping trucks are specialized vehicles which combine a powerful vacuum pump with a holding tank for sewage and wastewater.

The vacuum pump is activated, suction confirmed, the pumper is connected to a 4" or larger vacuum line, and the operator uses the line to empty the septic tank.

Common septic pumper truck vacuum pump brands include Battioni & Pagani vacuum pumps, Conde vacuum pumps, Hertell vacuum pumps, Masport vacuum pumps, Moro vacuum pumps, NVE (National Vacuum Equipment) pumps, PB vacuum pumps, Juro vacuum pumps.

Contact information for the manufacturers or distributors of all of these pumper truck vacuum pumps are at the end of this article. [3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10]

An example of the type of vacuum pump used on septic tank service vehicles is the Masport HXL400 System - Water cooled 400 CFM unit. Various pump sizes and pumping rates are available, all of them that work on septic pumper trucks will be similar in effect however.

This is a very powerful pump, typically weighing 470 pounds, using 6-vanes, water cooled, and pumping sewage at 400 cubic feet per minute. It should be readily apparent that septage moving through the unit and into the pumper truck will be highly agitated and mixed in the truck. This agitation effect will be true with any pump used for this application.

A Photographic Step by Step Guide to Pumping or Cleaning a Septic Tank

Before placing the septic tank pumping lines or performing any other steps with the septic pumping truck the operator locates the septic tank and removes its cover (discussed above.)

With the septic tank opened the operator performs an initial action to begin breaking up the septic tank floating scum layer and settled sludge layer as shown in the photo here.

PHOTO of operator breaking up septic tank sludge layer PHOTO of septic tank pumping vacuum hoses placed at the site

The septic pumper operator lays out the pumping vacuum lines from the tank to the septic tank.

The vacuum lines are not yet connected to the pumper truck nor has the vacuum pump been turned on.

PHOTO of opening the septic pumper truck vacuum pump motor and controls PHOTO of the septic pumper vacuum pump gauge

PHOTO of opening the septic pumper truck vacuum pump motor and controls

These photographs show the septic pumper truck's vacuum pump assembly.

The second photo of the vacuum pump gauge indicates that the pump is running at about -6" of mercury. In preparing to connect the pumper hose to the truck's transport tank, the operator must first turn on the vacuum pump.

You will only forget to do this once, as opening the valve at the bottom of the pumper tank without first turning on the vacuum pump can permit sewage to flow back out of the tank onto the operator!

The operator listens to the truck's vacuum pump motor to assure that the vacuum pump is operating correctly.

If the pump is blocked or jammed it will need to be cleared or repaired.

PHOTO of opening the septic pumper truck tank valve cover. PHOTO of connecting the septic pumper truck vacuum line.

Once the vacuum pump is operating satisfactorily we're ready to remove the pumper truck tank valve cover and to attach the vacuum line to the pumper truck.

PHOTO of the operator connecting sections of septic tank cleanout vacuum hose.

In the first photo at above left the operator is holding a bucket under the tank valve to catch the small amount of effluent that may fall out of the valve body when the valve cap is removed in order to attach the pumping hose.

The second photo at above right shows the operator attaching the first length of septic tank pumping hose to the tank truck.

With the pumper truck's vacuum pump operating properly and the septic pumping hoses laid in place, and with the first hose section already connected to the pumper truck, the operator connects the remaining sections of the vacuum line.

Watch out: the operator in these photos is not wearing personal eye protection equipment nor an apron. Those are recommended to protect from hazards of sewage contaminant splash-back.

Where to Buy Septic Pumper Trucks, Vacuum Pumping Trucks, other Septic System Service & Installation Equipment & Supplies

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Continue reading at PUMPING the SEPTIC TANK or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.

Or see PUMPER TRUCK VACUUM PUMPS - types, sources, lift height, vacuum specifications & sizing advice for vacuum and lift pumps used to clean septic tanks, grease traps, etc.


Or see these

Septic Pumping Procedure & Pumper Truck Operation Articles

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