How to Launch a Septic Tank Cleaning Business


Starting your own septic tank cleaning service is a great way to fill a need in many communities who don’t have access to local sewage systems and rely heavily on septic tanks for their wastewater management. However, without the proper preparation, you could overlook certain details which could end up hurting you at the end. Here are a few tips on how to launch a successful septic tank cleaning business.


Get the Right Expertise

If this is going to be a one-man operation, then you’ll have to get the proper expertise first and foremost. Septic tank maintenance and pumping isn’t that complicated; however, you’ll need to understand the mechanics of septic tank systems. You’ll also need to know how to maintain drains, grease traps and any other components that fall under your service offering.

Get the Proper Pump Truck

Your pump truck will be the most important piece of equipment you’ll need for your business. Depending on your budget, you can either go for a pre-built, custom or used unit. Used units can be found for as little as $30,000, but they do have their set of drawbacks. Used pump trucks don’t offer the same warranties as brand-new trucks, which could make a huge difference if you get a lot of business and something goes wrong. Companies like have a huge selection of used and pre-built units and offer custom options as well.

When buying a pump truck, make sure that it has the proper capacity. If you’re getting started, you should go for something around 3000 gallons. Large aerobic septic tanks are increasingly popular and buying a larger tank will allow you to make less trips and save on fuel.

Find a Disposal Location

Having a disposal location before you start is essential as well. Sewage disposal is heavily regulated and limited to approved companies that deal with sewage treatment and select wastewater treatment plants. So, make sure that you check a few options in your area and secure a destination before you get your first job.

Scope the Competition

Before you start, you will need to check what your competition is doing to see how you can improve or how you can diversify your service offering. You could also ask advice from others in the business. However, someone from your city might be reluctant to help you. Instead, try to find someone in another market to give you some pointers. Some will be more than happy to give you some help as long as you’re not a direct competitor.

Consider Opening a Franchise

Becoming a franchisee could be a great way to benefit from an established brand and hit the floor running. Opening a franchise could also give you access to many resources you wouldn’t have access to if you were on your own. You also won’t have to spend as much on things like advertising as brand recognition will attract customers to your service organically.

Starting a septic tank cleaning business can be a great way to make money if you understand the market, know how to build and maintain a steady clientele, and offer the most reliable service you can.