We're the high country experts in complex pump systems, jet/vac cleaning, and the complete removal of sludge, grease, sand, and septic waste.

970-453-8875 Serving all of Colorado including Summit, Park, Lake, Clear Creek, & Eagle Counties

Portable Sludge Dewatering

We will reduce your waste disposal volume by up to ninety percent.

Clearwater Cleanup Company uses portable dewatering containers to remove nearly all the water from sludge and other waste products. The clear water is returned to the tank or plant.

The solid matter, now reduced to just 10% of the original volume, is all that needs to be hauled away. This means greatly reduced hauling and disposal volumes.

AVC grease

Dewatered grease inside our portable dewatering container.
Separation of solids is achieved using polymer and
fine netting.

clear water

Clear water produced by the dewatering process can
be returned directly to the tank or plant, or the water can
be used for high-pressure jetting.

septic cake bar

Septic tank sludge after we have removed the water.
This “cake” is ready to be mixed with wood chips
and turned into compost.

The dewatering process - step by step:

  1. Liquid waste (such as sludge, grease, septic or sand trap waste) is pumped into our mixing unit.
  2. The mixer adds polymer, and sends the sludge to our dewatering container. For smaller pumping jobs, this is all done on a single truck. For large volumes, the sludge is transferred to one or more roll-off dewatering containers.
  3. The polymer uses a positive or negative charge to attract the solids to it. The solids clump together (flocculate) and the water drains away. This is a physical, rather than chemical reaction, so neither the sludge nor the water is chemically changed.
  4. Using only gravity, the separated sludge is allowed to dewater. The solids and polymer are retained in our container(s) behind super-fine mesh screens.
  5. The clear water (permeate) is returned to the tank or treatment plant. But first it can be used to high-pressure wash the tank, or to wash out and thin the sludge that is yet to be pumped.
  6. The solids form a cake, which ranges from 8 – 14% dry matter, depending on the type of sludge. The cake stays on our container.
  7. The volume of sludge cake that needs to be hauled away is about 10% of the original liquid waste volume. In other words, depending on the thickness of the original sludge, up to 80,000 gallons can be pumped onto one of our 8,000-gallon container before it has enough solids to become full.
  8. The sludge cake is hauled to a composting facility. There it is mixed with wood chips and other dry waste and turned into compost that can be used for landscaping. Learn more about the composting process on our Environmental Protection page.

Advantages of Clearwater versus portable belt press or sludge tanker


Benefits Clearwater(Gravity) Portable Belt Press Tanker
Quick set-up yes no yes
Fits in small or congested access area yes no no
Pumping speed (gpm) fast slow fast
Continuous pumping yes yes no
Ability to thin sludgeusing supernatant yes no no
Ability to pressure-wash using supernatant yes no no
Does NOT use your electricity or hydrant yes no no
Less volume to haul yes yes no
Fewer hauling delays from traffic, weather yes yes no
Full haul capacity (fully dumped each time) yes yes no
Reduced disposal volume yes yes no
Able to land apply no no yes
Pumping in freezing temps (down to zero degrees) yes no no
Return of beneficial micro-organisms with water yes yes no
Able to operate in natural disaster (self-sufficient) yes no no
Able to do large lagoons Yes, up to a million gallons. Best choice if far from farmland Yes, but slow. They might limit gallons as a matter of policy. Yes, efficient if near farmland for land application.

RMNP dewater

Three of Clearwater’s portable, roll-off dewatering containers
pumping at a remote treatment pond. We can set up quickly
and process sludge without using your electricity or fresh water.

Clearwater - A pioneer in American portable dewatering

Clearwater has been using dewatering equipment made by Simon Moos Manufacturing, of Denmark, since 1996.

Mobile dewatering and waste minimization has been the standard in Europe for 35 years. Clearwater was a pioneer in using this advanced technology in the United States. Even today, we are one of very few American companies to offer this environmentally friendly and cost-saving method of waste pumping.

Currently there are 4 Simon Moos combined pumping/dewatering trucks in the U.S., and we have 2 of them. We also have 3 larger dewatering containers from Simon Moos.

Click here to be taken to the Simon Moos Maskinfabrik website. At their homepage, click on “England” to see the English language version.