Grey water treatment systems: A review

L.N.A.H. Abu-Ghunmi, G. Zeeman, M. Fayyad, J.B. van Lier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

93 Citations (Scopus)


This review aims to discern a treatment for grey water by examining grey water characteristics, reuse standards, technology performance and costs. The review reveals that the systems for treating grey water, whatever its quality, should consist of processes that are able to trap pollutants with a small particle size and convert organic matter to mineralized compounds. For efficient, simple and affordable treatment of grey water with safe effluent reuse, a combined anaerobic-aerobic process is recommended, with disinfection being an optional step. The removal and subsequent conversion of suspended and colloidal particles in the anaerobic process need further improvement. Furthermore, the reuse standards should be revised and classified considering the reuse options and requirements.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)657-698
JournalCritical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • waste water
  • water treatment
  • waste water treatment
  • environmental technology
  • waste-water
  • membrane bioreactor
  • greywater reuse
  • microbial quality
  • multistory buildings
  • constructed wetlands
  • anaerobic treatment
  • domestic greywater
  • small communities
  • nonpotable reuse


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