Removing Solids

The purpose of pumping a lagoon is to create more capacity for continued use.  Solids on the bottom restrict the amount of room for influents and need to be removed on a periodic basis.


Lagoon Pumping prides themselves in effective agitation and suspension of the solids in the slurry before pumping out to the fields.  Solid levels are dependent on the type of animal waste and the number of years since it was last removed.


Typical animal waste lagoons with a 50-50 top water to solids ratio will produce between 12% to 16% solid content in the slurry.  Pumping solids is very abrasive to the pumps and hoses so heavy solids will cost more to pump.  However, the cost to remove heavy solids is less than pumping more gallons of effluent with a lower percent of solids.


Heavier solids causes: 

    - Heavier solids is a thicker slurry and moves slower in the pumps and hoses,

    - Takes longer to pump fewer gallons per minute,

    - Takes more labor hours to finish the job,

    - Takes higher horse power engines and larger pumps,

    - Longer run time and larger engines takes more fuel, 

    - More pump and impeller wear with thicker slurries, 

    - More destructive to our hoses and equipment.  


When we give you a quote we will estimate your solids percentage based upon the lagoon samples taken.  However, the actual cost will be determined by the percent of solids reported by the certified lab.  


Since lab results are not available at the time of initial invoicing a solids surcharge or credit will be sent for the difference of what was billed and what was actually pumped when the reports become available.  If we have additional water available to thin the lagoon slurry when it becomes too thick to pump we offer a not to exceed 12% solids guarantee.


The best part of our 12% solids guarantee is if the lab reports show we pumped it thinner, you pay the lower price per gallon.  If we pump it thicker than 12%, we cover the difference.  You only will pay the lesser cost, actual % of solids pumping cost or 12% pumping cost. 


The most cost effective, no problems percent of solids to pump is 12-14% solids.  


The good aspect of pumping thicker solids is it takes fewer gallons to remove the solids in your lagoon.  In the end, the total job is less expensive than pumping more gallons at a thinner solid content.  While the cost to pump a gallon of thicker solids costs more, the total job will cost less.  Yes, it will cost less because it takes less gallons of water to clean the lagoon.


Solid levels are determined by a certified lab based upon samples taken of the manure slurry as it is being pumped to the field.  Percent of solids are determined by weight of dried solids to the total weight of the effluent sample.


The best mix of top water to solids is 50-50.  This will produce between 12%-14% solids in the manure slurry.  If a lagoon is completely full of solids it will require additional water to be added in order to make the manure slurry fluid enough to pump.  


On settling basins and lagoons which are completely full of solids a ready source of make-up water is required.  This make-up water can be from other lagoons, fresh water sources or irrigation wells.  The inflow of make-up water needs to be 800 to 1200 gallons per minute in order to keep up with the manure slurry being removed.


Our pumping crews can use our pumps to transfer water from one lagoon to another. Or we can provide the hose to bring the make-up water from a irrigation well to the settling basin or lagoon being pumped.  There is an hourly cost for water transfer done by our crews.


If a dairy is bedding their cows with sand there usually will be sand found in the manure slurry.  When this happens it will dramatically drive up the percent of solids.  Sand settles out of solution quickly and is harder to remove from the lagoon during the pumping process.  As a result over time sand build up can reduce capacity which generally can only be removed by dredging or excavation.


However, some sand can be effectively removed by pumping very thick solids.  The thick solids prevent the sand from dropping out of solution as it is being agitated into a slurry.  


While it does cost more to pump thicker solids, it will take fewer gallons to clean the lagoon.  The net result is. "it will cost less to clean a lagoon pumping thicker solids than pumping thinner slurries."

Dry Tons Removed vs. Gallons Pumped
It is less expensive to pump fewer gallons with thicker solids even tho you are paying more per gallon pumped.
Dry Tons vs. Gallons.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [99.0 KB]
Reduce Your Pumping Costs by Pumping Thicker Solids
Why does it cost more to pump thicker solids? This article will explain why pumping thicker solids, even when paying more per gallon, is actually less expensive because you are pumping fewer gallons to accomplish the job.
Why thicker solids cost more.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [86.2 KB]
Importance of Having Sufficient Top Water.
While it is cheaper to pump thicker solids you still need water to move the sludge through the pumps and hoses. In addition, it takes at least 3 feet of top water to float the agitation boat. A mix of one part sludge to one part water will give approximately the 12% to 14% desired percent of solids.
Importance of Sufficient Top Water.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [72.4 KB]
12% Solids Guarantee
Have a lagoon full of solids? Have sufficient additional water available? Then take advantage of our 12% solids guarantee. You can"t lose and it will cost you less in the long run to pump the thicker solids.
12% Solids Gurantee.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [226.3 KB]

Lagoon Pumping & Dredging, Inc.

For information, quotes and sales: Call the representative for your area:

    North East: NE, SD, IA, N-MO, NE-KS: (402) 270-1366 (Brian Jakub)

    South West: W-TX, NM, W-OK, CO, WY, MT, W-KS: (763) 355-4099  (Steve Larson)

    South East: E-TX, E-OK, S-MO, SE-KS, LA, MS, AR (405) 406-7979 (Jason Lee)


    Main Office: (402) 563-3464   (Accounting, Emergencies, Management)

Get your FREE estimate today!

Lagoon Pumping &

Dredging, Inc.
3211 East 19th St.

Suite 200

Columbus, NE 68601  


For Information,
Quotes and Sales:
Call the representative for your area:


North Eastern Sales:


Brian Jakub

(402) 270-1366 - Cell


South Western Sales:

W-TX and TX Panhandle, NM, OK Panhandle, CO, MT, WY, W-KS

Steve Larson

(763) 355-4099 - Cell

(806) 683-5553 - 2nd Cell


South Eastern Sales


Jason Lee

(405) 406-7979 - Cell



Office Phone:

(Accounting, Emergencies, Upper Management)


Fax: 402-564-1696




Or use our contact us form.

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