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Comparison of Multiple Grab and 24-hour Time-composite Samples from Aerated Onsite Sewage Treatment Systems

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Grab and time-composite sampling are two options to assess performance of onsite sewage treatment systems in the field. We undertook the study described here to assess variability associated with two approaches, multiple grab samples over the course of a 24-hour interval and 24-hour time-composite samples. Effluent from 14 aerated onsite sewage treatment systems was sampled several times in both manners. Total suspended solids (TSS) were the most variable parameter. Average relative deviations between multiple grab samples and the corresponding time-composite sample were similar to average relative deviations between duplicates for TSS (∼35%), Total Nitrogen (TN) (<5%) and Total Phosphorus (TP) (<5%) and somewhat increased for carbonaceous biochemical oxygen demand after 5 days (cBOD5). Average relative standard deviations for repeated sampling events for a given system were also similar for both approaches, indicating the feasibility of using grab samples instead of time-composite sampling.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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