Throughout central and southern Nassau County and southwestern Suffolk County most municipalities have central sewer systems. In northern Nassau County and the rest of Suffolk County all homes have private septic systems with the exception of a few large development and Condominium communities.
Prior to1980 many homes had simple cesspools to handle waste water. This is typically a cylindrical tank with perforated sides which allows the waste water to leach into the ground. The solid waste material would eventually clog the perforations and the soil interfering with the leaching action resulting in the waste water booking up.
Since about 1980 the minimum system required by the Board of Health has a septic tank to separate the solids from the liquid waste and a separate leaching pool for the liquid waste to percolate into the ground. There systems have a much longer life expectancy than the simple cesspool but do require periodic cleaning of the septic tank. The size of the septic tank and the leaching pools is determined by the member of bedrooms in a residence or the flow rate per square. Foot for nonresidential properties based on the type of occupancy.