Following on from last week’s post, this week we are looking at what pump stations are, what they are used for and all the additional options for this type of system.

What is a pump station, and where would you use it?

A pump station, in short, is a holding tank combined with a pump system for pumping effluent or water up to a higher level where it is not possible to rely on gravity.

In addition to simple pump stations there are also grinder pump stations available, which, as the name implies, contain a grinder to chop more solid effluent into fine particles to create a liquid slurry. These are more efficient and powerful where needed due to distance or lift height.

Pump stations can be used for sewage or for greywater. As discussed in an earlier blog, greywater can be used for toilet flushing and in these cases a pump station might be used to convey the water to a header tank in a loft space.


In domestic applications, pump stations are often used where a property is below road level and therefore downhill of the main sewer, or sometimes where the distance to the main sewer is too far to get sufficient gravity downfall.  The effluent (drainage from sinks, showers, toilets, washing machines, etc.) goes to a holding tank just below ground level, known as the wet well. This is the basis of the pump station, and the pump is controlled by liquid level. Once the level reaches a certain point, the pump, activated by a float switch, starts up to elevate the effluent through the pipework to the main sewer, via a non-return valve.

Once the level drops sufficiently, the float switch stops the pump. Pump stations are available in a range of sizes, starting at 800 litres, to suit the property and number of people it serves. There is also a 450 litre small size pump station to serve an extension or outbuilding.

In some cases, larger pump stations would be installed for a group of houses or flats (3200 litre size illustrated at right).

Commercial and institutional uses

Much larger pump station systems would be needed in the same type of situation, but for commercial sites, leisure centres, hospitals, care homes, schools or other types of commercial or public buildings where more people live and work.

For larger commercial-type applications the SPEL GRP underground tanks are also available as pump stations, in addition to the Harlequin and Tungsten ranges.

Pump stations (usually twin pump versions) might also be used to pump treated effluent from a sewage treatment plant to a watercourse or drain.

Agricultural and industrial

Another use for pump stations, maybe in agricultural or industrial locations would be for storm water removal in low lying areas where the geology or ground surface doesn’t allow for soakaways.

Our products – your solutions

Tanks-UK supply the Harlequin range of pump stations, and our own Tungsten brand as well. We can adapt them with the required pipework and different fittings, inlets and outlets to suit your individual application.

Just give us a call on 01953 665940 or email info@tanks-uk.com with your requirements and we’ll send you a quote.

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