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We have licensed septic tank system installers with years of experience.

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Rooter Septic Services offers most reliable and affordable septic tank services in the area.

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23 Oct 2023
Common Septic Tank Materials
Common Septic Tank Materials

Common Septic Tank Materials

Septic tanks are an essential component of wastewater management systems, particularly in areas not connected to municipal sewage lines. These underground structures are designed to treat and dispose of household wastewater effectively. When it comes to septic tank installation, repair, or maintenance, the choice of materials plays a crucial role in the tank's longevity and efficiency.

Concrete Septic Tanks

Concrete septic tanks have been a popular choice for decades due to their durability and longevity. These tanks are typically constructed on-site, which allows for customization according to the specific needs of the property. Concrete tanks can withstand heavy loads and are resistant to damage from the soil and groundwater.


  • Durability: Concrete tanks have a long lifespan, often exceeding 40 years.
  • High load-bearing capacity: They can withstand heavy traffic or landscaping without damage.
  • Customizable: These tanks can be tailored to fit the property's requirements.


  • Installation complexity: On-site construction can be more time-consuming.
  • Prone to cracking: Over time, concrete tanks may develop cracks, leading to leaks.

Fiberglass Septic Tanks

Fiberglass septic tanks are lightweight and easy to transport, making them a popular choice for septic tank installation. They are constructed from fiberglass-reinforced plastic, offering excellent corrosion resistance.


  • Corrosion resistance: Fiberglass tanks are not affected by rust or deterioration.
  • Lightweight: Easy to transport and install, saving on labor costs.
  • No leakage: Fiberglass tanks are less prone to cracking compared to concrete.


Vulnerable to damage from heavy loads: They may not be the best choice for areas with significant traffic.

Plastic Septic Tanks

Plastic septic tanks are another lightweight option with excellent resistance to corrosion. These tanks are often made from high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which is a durable and cost-effective material.


  • Lightweight and easy to install: Suitable for various terrains and locations.
  • Corrosion-resistant: Plastic tanks are not susceptible to rust or decay.
  • Affordable: They are typically more budget-friendly than other options.


  • Limited lifespan: Plastic tanks may have a shorter lifespan compared to concrete or fiberglass tanks.
  • Vulnerable to damage from UV rays: They can degrade when exposed to direct sunlight.

Steel Septic Tanks

Steel septic tanks are less common but can be a viable choice in certain situations. These tanks are made from steel that is coated or lined to prevent corrosion.


  • Strength: Steel tanks are highly durable and can withstand heavy loads.
  • Longevity: With proper maintenance, they can have a long lifespan.


  • Vulnerable to corrosion: If not adequately coated or lined, steel tanks can rust.
  • Higher maintenance: Regular inspection and maintenance are required to prevent rust.

Aerobic Treatment Units (ATUs)

Aerobic Treatment Units, while not a material in the traditional sense, are worth mentioning due to their increasing popularity in modern septic systems. ATUs use mechanical components and aerobic bacteria to treat wastewater more efficiently than traditional septic tanks. They can be made from various materials, including concrete, fiberglass, or plastic.


  • Superior wastewater treatment: ATUs provide advanced treatment and produce cleaner effluent.
  • Smaller footprint: They often require less space than conventional septic tanks.
  • Environmentally friendly: ATUs reduce environmental impact through enhanced wastewater treatment.


  • Higher initial cost: ATUs are typically more expensive to install than standard septic tanks.
  • Increased maintenance: The mechanical components may require more frequent maintenance.

The Material for You

Selecting the right material for your septic tank is a crucial decision that impacts its lifespan, maintenance requirements, and overall effectiveness in wastewater treatment. Each material has its advantages and drawbacks, so it's essential to consider your specific needs, budget, and the environmental conditions of your property. Whether you're in need of septic tank pumping, septic tank repair, or septic tank installation, consulting with a professional septic company like Rooter Septic Services can help you make an informed decision and ensure that your septic system operates efficiently for years to come.