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Wastewater Treatment Department

Since the early 1950s, the Borough has operated the wastewater plant with the tradition of producing the highest quality byproduct as possible. The treatment plant, located at 214 Saint Charles Street in Schuylkill Haven, continues to strive to maintain and continuously improve our standards set forth by our governing agencies.

The Schuylkill Haven Wastewater Treatment Plant receives wastewater from all of Schuylkill Haven Borough, parts of North Manheim township, parts of South Manheim township, and parts of Wayne Township. The plant will also accept hauled in wastewater from approved locations on various occasions. The permitted flow for this facility is 2.8 million gallons a day. Currently, the average flow is between 700-800 thousand gallons a day.

Once wastewater enters the facility, it goes through various stages of treatment. Those stages are as follows: Raw influent screening, primary settling tanks, aeration tanks to perform biological treatment, secondary settling tanks, and chlorine disinfection before the effluent (clean water) enters the Schuylkill River. The solids that are removed from the process are further reduced using our three digesters onsite. From there, they are processed through a sludge press where water is removed and biosolids remain. The biosolids are then hauled offsite to the northern parts of Schuylkill County to fill in strip mines in efforts to restore the landscape. 

Reducing Inflow and Infiltration (I&I): The wastewater department along with the collections/distributions department are working on reducing the I&I entering the sanity sewer collection system. Infiltration is when groundwater enters sewer pipes through cracks or manholes. Its source is often from sump pumps in residential homes or from downspouts that are connected to sewer lines. This practice is prohibited by the Schuylkill Haven Borough. Although the Borough has drastically reduced I&I over that past decade, the issue is still a serious one. In the event of a large rain fall (2-3”), our influent flow can easily jump from 700 thousand gallons a day to 5-6 million gallons a day, which is beyond the facility’s design capabilities.

What Not to Flush: When disposing wastewater, remember that the only things that should be flushed are the 3 Ps, pee, poop, and paper. Anything else that is flushed cannot only cause issues for the treatment plant, but also for the homeowner. Any inorganic material can easily clog homeowner pipes, the Borough’s collection system, or treatment facility’s mechanical devices and pumps.

Other items that should not be flushed are:

  • Medications including any sort of prescriptions, over the counter drugs, vitamins, illegal drugs and needles
  • Any sort of clothing, cloth rags, stockings, shop towels, mop heads and hair clippings
  • Dental floss, plastic cotton swabs, feminine hygiene products, condoms, and toothbrushes
  • Plastic of any kind
  • Chemical cleaning products, insect sprays, weed sprays, and solvents
  • Cooking oil and grease
  • “Flushable” wipes of any kind
  • Kids toys