Difference Between Septic and Sewer

ou may have heard the terms septic and sewer when it comes to discussing the transportation of your household waste. Septic and sewer systems can both help remove your waste through toilets and drains. What’s the difference between these 2 terms? There are actually a few things that set apart your septic and sewer system. We’ll explore them below!


What is a Septic System?

A septic tank system is an underground waste disposal system underneath a property. All the waste from that property’s drain pipes flows into the septic tank. Septic tanks do need to be cleaned every 3-5 years, and this is a maintenance step that is not meant to be passed over, as it could result in heavy waste backup on your property. Septic systems can last for a long time, and septic tanks rarely need to be replaced. Septic systems can be great for any property.

Many homeowners prefer a septic system because it is environmentally friendly, independent (you don’t have to deal with community clogs and other issues that could arise outside of your property), and it is cost-efficient in terms of installation. What could be the cons of using a septic system? There is regular maintenance to be upheld and your septic system may suffer from broken pipes that lead to sewage spills in your yard, as well as backed up drains.

What is a Sewer System?

There are 2 parts to a sewer line system, the upper lateral and lower lateral. The upper lateral part takes the waste away from your home and to the lower lateral part. The lower lateral part takes waste water to the main city sewer system. Once it reaches the main sewer system, the wastewater is cleaned and treated in a water treatment plan for reuse.

Many homeowners prefer a sewer system to a septic system because it can withstand rain and storms, deal with excess water, and can also be easier to clean. A sewer system can collapse and be repaired, and if there is a clog in the city sewer line, your own sewer line system becomes affected as well.

In Conclusion…

A septic and sewer system may have their differences, but they are both preferred by a variety of property owners when it comes to efficient waste transportation/disposal. You may prefer a septic system if you live in a more rural area, and you may prefer a sewer system if you are in a more busy area in the city. Whatever system you choose, you can be confident you are getting a system that will have your household waste out of sight, and out of mind!


When an issue arises with your septic or sewer system, you want to make sure to have a professional plumber on call to get a thorough inspection and the most efficient solutions. Looking for a plumber in Pasadena or a plumber in Los Angeles? Performance Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning is the company you can trust for septic or sewer services!