The Ins and Outs of a Lift Station

August 6, 2021

There’s a lot that goes into the treatment of our wastewater. It’s a surprisingly intricate process. But it must be precise and effective to prevent the release of poisonous gases or disease-causing bacteria.

Wastewater companies use a system that involves water pumps and wastewater lift stations. To achieve energy efficiency, gravity is used whenever possible to transport wastewater through pipes from one location to another. But as you might have guessed, this isn’t always possible, as there’s a limited number of slopes in any area. That’s where lift stations come in.

What is a lift station, and what does it do?

A wastewater lift station is a pumping station that houses wastewater and sewage with the chief function of eventually pumping said wastewater to a higher elevation. Raising the elevation of the sewage in a system of pipes allows gravity to facilitate the flow of the water down through the pipes to the desired destination.

How does a lift station work?

The two main components of a lift station are the wet well and the control panel. The wet well is the guts of the lift station; it houses large amounts of raw sewage that get sent there. While there, the wastewater is checked for its composition, and the solids and liquids are separated.

Floaters sit in the wet well, and when they reach a certain predetermined level, the pump is activated, and it sends the sewage to its next location. Lift stations are usually found underground to limit the public’s exposure to noxious gases and can be regulated by the control panel, which has myriad switches and circuit breakers.

What kind of maintenance does a wastewater lift station need?

Wastewater companies employ special technicians who are trained and certified to work on lift stations. Because sewage is a hazardous material that can be dangerous to human health, lift station operators are required to perform regular maintenance and record their findings.

Some examples of lift station maintenance are cleaning floaters and wet wells, checking valves, greasing up motors and running electrical tests on backup generators and power supplies. Technicians will also write down flow readings in addition to testing the lift stations’ various alarm systems.

What would happen in the event of a lift station failure?

It could be a potential disaster. Because the lift station runs on electricity, a power outage or other electrical issue could cause a lift station to cease operations. A pump failure or breakage of a pipeline that carries pressurized wastewater are two other possible ways that the lift station could fail.

A nonfunctioning lift station could lead to wastewater backing up in the water collection system and entering homes or seeping out into the neighboring ecosystem. To avoid a potential catastrophe, proper and regular lift station maintenance is imperative.

Call for lift station maintenance today

Knowing how a wastewater lift station works and how to avoid any potential pitfalls therein can help keep citizens and the environment safe from runaway wastewater. But to perform adequate maintenance, the operators must be skilled and knowledgeable. When it comes to wastewater companies, we at Enviro-Line Co., Inc. employ the best, brightest and most experienced technicians who understand the importance of sanitary wastewater treatment and genuinely care about keeping you and your family safe.

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