Septic System vs. Sewer: Which is Right for Your New Home?

Though the septic and sewer systems serve the same purpose of collecting and processing wastewater, they are both different in their functionality & purpose. Whether you are moving into a new home or constructing one, it’s important to know which wastewater treatment system is the right choice. Should you choose a septic service in Molalla or a sewer system?
Let’s find out in this blog.

What are Septic Systems?

A septic tank is an individual wastewater treatment plant installed in different properties. Septic tanks are usually built underground to collect the wastewater and materials from your kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, etc. This collected water is separated into liquids and solids using bacteria. The water is cleaned and released outside, mostly into the earth.

Septic services are cost-effective and come with easier maintenance. However, regular cleaning is necessary to prevent the septic tank from overflowing. Septic tanks are useful when the region doesn’t have a common municipality sewer system to collect and process wastewater.

What are Sewer Systems?

A sewer system is a centralized wastewater treatment plant that collects wastewater and materials from multiple properties in the region. Sewer systems are built by municipalities in towns, cities, and counties to ensure proper disposal of wastewater generated by households and commercial properties in the area.
Sewer systems are large and expensive. They are less likely to cause pollution but can be harmful to health without proper maintenance. Overflows from blocked sewers can create quite a few issues for anyone who lives in the vicinity and beyond.

Key Differences

Residential owners prefer to hire septic service in Newberg. Smaller households with fewer people find a septic system a feasible option. Similarly, large households in urban areas find sewer systems a better choice.

Here, we’ll examine the key differences between the septic and sewer systems.

1. Cost

Septic tank services are considered cost-effective despite the initial installation costs. Installing a sewer line might seem easier but can be complicated depending on where you live and the type of central sewer system your region has. Furthermore, the septic tank will be within your property premises and can be designed to suit your needs.

If you live in urban areas with well-developed sewer systems, it might be budget-friendly to simply connect your wastewater disposal lines to the central system. The costs for both methods will vary based on the location, topography, labor rates, municipal permits, regulations, etc.

2. Maintenance

Both wastewater treatment plants need maintenance and cleaning to work properly. On average, a septic tank cleaning needs to be done every three to five years, depending on the tank size, the number of people in the house, etc.

A local plumber must inspect and maintain the sewer lines every eighteen to twenty-two months. They will clean the blockage and remove the clogs for the wastewater to continuously flow through the lines.
Septic tank cleaning requires more work as the pipes, connectors, tanks, etc., have to be checked to make sure there are no cracks or breaks. However, the maintenance costs will increase for both systems as they get older.

3. Environmental Impact

Septic service in Sherwood can be environmentally friendly. They help reduce water pollution by treating wastewater before releasing it into larger water bodies like rivers, lakes, seas, etc. Septic tank pumping can also be used to recycle wastewater and use it for irrigation or other purposes. They can also be used to generate renewable energy like methane gas.

The sewer systems can also be helpful for the environment, though this depends on diverse factors. A well-planned sewer system can minimize the risk of erosion and floods. It can prevent water pollution and increase sanitation.

Both systems are good for the environment as long as they are maintained, cleaned, and repaired periodically.

4. Flexibility

A septic service is more flexible, giving you greater freedom to choose the type of wastewater plant you want to install. There’s no need to rely on the central sewer system. Furthermore, any problem with the common sewer lines will not affect you and your house.

A sewer system has less flexibility as it is larger and more complicated. It has to connect with the lines from multiple houses. The sewer networks can be hard to understand for a layman. Even a small issue can lead to major repairs and problems.

5. Health and Safety

You can hire septic tank cleaning services anytime to inspect the system and ensure everything is in place. There are no side effects to having a septic system on the property if it is regularly cleaned.
The central sewer system is also necessary to maintain the health and safety of the citizens in the region. However, improper maintenance can lead to epidemics caused by water and air pollution.

6. Location and Regulations

A septic tank pumping system is suitable if you live in rural areas with limited or no municipal sewer lines. Those living in areas close to seas and oceans may also benefit from having an individual septic tank at home. Sewer lines are suitable in cities with multiple properties.

7. Long-term Costs

Even though septic tanks need replacement after twenty to thirty years, they have lesser long-term costs than sewer systems. As the sewer system gets older, more lines will have to be replaced, increasing the costs for everyone.

8. Water Usage

Small to medium-sized households will find septic tanks convenient. The wastewater can be treated and released into the soil to increase groundwater levels. The sewer system can handle more water flow without getting clogged. These are suitable for large households with excessive water consumption.

9. Odor and Aesthetics

A septic tank doesn’t produce any odor and is not visible above the ground. It doesn’t interfere with the aesthetics of your property. Rather, odor is an indication of a problem with the septic tank. Otherwise, you won’t even know about it. Sewer lines are also hidden underground, though they produce more odors in case of issues.

10. Property Resale Value

A house/property with a neat septic system has a higher resale value, as there’s no need to worry about how the municipal sewer lines work. Additionally, there won’t be a need to pay monthly utility bills for sewer line maintenance. A septic tank can be listed as one of the advantages.

11. Emergency Situations

A septic system is easier to take care of during emergencies as the autonomy to decide the next step lies with you. A sewer system has to be repaired by authorized bodies, which may take time due to the paperwork involved.

Hire a Septic Service Installer near Your Area

Contact a reputed and affordable company offering complete septic service in Wilsonville, Molalla, Newberg, and Sherwood. We provide the best septic tank installation, cleaning, maintenance, and repair services to residential and commercial property owners.


It’s a smart choice to hire septic services like American On-Site Septic near your location. That way, we will be accessible and within reach even in case of emergencies. Hiring a local septic pumping and repair company will ensure the team has total knowledge about the soil and weather conditions, regulations, permits, etc.
Call American On-Site Septic today to set up a free site visit!



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