What Is The Switch For On My Septic Tank? (TOP 5 Tips)

  • Any conventional septic system designed so the drain field is at a higher elevation than the tank needs a pump to transfer effluent from the tank to the drain field. A float switch inside the tank tells the pump when to come on, and a separate float switch operates an alarm that comes on when the water level exceeds a preset minimum.

How does a septic float switch work?

A float switch detects the level of a liquid in a tank or container. It floats on top of the liquid surface and acts as a mechanical switch as the liquid level goes up or down. They control devices like pumps (pump water in or out), valves (open or close inlet/outlets), or alarms to notify users.

Where is the float switch on a septic tank?

For switches and alarms that can be installed into new septic tanks, a side-mounted float switch might be a better option. These switches are run through the side of the tank, rising and falling with water levels to an open or closes position.

How long do float switches last?

These old float switches didn’t have many operations and needed to be replaced about every 3 years or so, making them expensive to keep up with. However, new float switch manufacturers are producing water level control technology that is getting rid of old float switches for good.

What does level switch do?

A level switch is a sensor that detects the presence of liquids, powder, or granulated materials at a specific location. (It is also referred to as level sensor) For example, when a tank is supplied with liquid, it overflow.In order to prevent overflows, a level switch is installed near the top of the tank.

How do you tell if a septic pump is working?

To test if the pump is working, first turn the pump on by turning the second from the bottom float upside down. While holding that float upside down, turn the next float up (that would be the second from the top), upside down. You should hear the pump turn on.

How do you know if your septic pump is not working?

Without a functioning pump, the sewage level continues to rise and the alarm lets you know the waste isn’t being removed from the tank. This alarm will sound and alert you before a sewage backup occurs.

Do float switches go bad?

As with any piece of equipment, a float switch will have a limited operating life. However, if the switch is used properly and maintained, there is no reason that it should not last for many years. Even the wrong type of switch may work in the short term, but it is going to be much more likely to fail or malfunction.

How do you unstick a septic float?

Raise the float to its fully open position, and if the pump does not pump or the alarm does not sound, give the float a bump. If the alarm then trips or the pump then starts, replace the float.

What does alarm on septic tank mean?

A septic tank alarm system is a device designed to monitor the water elevation inside the tank, and it alerts you when the water level in the tank is much higher or lower than it should be. This raises the water level inside the pump tank until the controls cycle back and come on again.

Will a flooded septic tank fix itself?

Most septic tanks are not damaged by flooding since they are below ground and completely covered. However, septic tanks and pump chambers can fill with silt and debris, and must be professionally cleaned. If the soil absorption field is clogged with silt, a new system may have to be installed.

Why is my septic not pumping?

If the pump does not appear to be working at all, does not respond to any tests and is not pumping effluent, there may be a wiring problem. First check your circuit breaker, and then try to use a multimeter or similar device to check wires in the septic system for damage to see what needs to be replaced.

Top Quality Float Switches and Water Tank Float Switches

Float switches are an essential component of your septic system; they control the operation of your septic pump and alert you when there is a problem, such as when the water level is too high. There are several distinct types of float switches, each of which performs a different function. We will go through this in more detail below. Alarms and pumps are controlled by control duty floats, which are not always directly connected to the pump in question. They are connected directly to the control panel, and the control panel has a relay that activates whatever functions are required.

To summarize the action, the float rises, closing contacts close and this in turn activates the relay switch, which enables and takes on the load of whatever was previously switched on and off.

The float switch is responsible for channeling the electrical charge that drives the pump.

Pump floats are available in a variety of sizes.

  1. The old pump on the system would have drawn more amps as a result of its age; when pumps age, they begin to draw more amps, which is ultimately what causes them to break down.
  2. When added to an electrical circuit, float switches enable the sensing of fluid levels on their own without any external assistance from the circuit designer.
  3. A closed circuit is one in which electricity is able to travel through the circuit’s components and provide power to the devices in the circuit.
  4. Float switches are activated when fluid levels rise in conjunction with the rise in water level.
  5. The upward orientation of a float switch will normally lead it to shut, although the direction in which a float switch closes will vary depending on the exact float switch being used.
  6. The natural position of a float switch is in the position when it is hanging down.
  7. When the fluid level in a septic system reaches a specific level, the system will normally close a circuit and activate a pump.

The typical position of a normally openfloat switch will cause a circuit to be opened while the switch is in the open position.

When the water level in the system is high, a usually open system will become a closed circuit.

When an excessive amount of effluent accumulates in the tank, a standard septic system will attempt to pump it out.

The closed circuit will activate the effluent pump, which will then raise the wastewater to the desired level once again.

When the fluid level is low, current will flow; when the fluid level is high, current will not flow.

It is possible to utilize this system when the user requires the fluid level in a system to be higher than a specified minimum height.

Mercury is the first sort of mechanism to be discussed.

Unlike the first sort of mechanism, the second type is more mechanical in character.

The ball will roll within the float switch as the level of the fluid changes within the switch.

Float switches are also available in two different configurations: wide angle and narrow angle.

Float switches of this sort can be utilized in situations where a moderate degree of variation in fluid level is acceptable or to be expected.

These sorts of float switches should be considered if the user wishes to keep a more steady fluid level throughout the process.

When the float switch is closed, the effluent pump will begin to circulate the water.

In this way, the level of effluent in your tank can be controlled without the need for the user to look inside of the tank to determine if the pump should be engaged.

It is possible that an effluent pump will fail, causing the level of wastewater in your tank to grow over permitted limits.

A faulty pump, on the other hand, will not empty your tank.

It is possible for the float switch to become stuck in the on position due to a steady current.

This is due to the fact that the float switch has been destroyed and is still instructing the pump to empty a tank that is already empty.

When you purchase a new effluent pump, it is recommended that you replace the float switch to ensure that your system continues to operate properly for a longer period of time.

Float switches that are used in conjunction with a timer may be present.

To adjust the fluid level, an array of float switches, with an override switch, and an alert may be used in some systems. When installing a septic system, it is critical to understand the amount and types of float switches that will be required.

  • Float switches are used to control the operation of various devices dependent on the amount of fluid in the tank. Determine if a typically open or normally closed float switch is required. Be sure to determine if you want a wide angle or small angle floating switch. When you replace your effluent pump, you should also replace the float switch.

How to Install a Septic Tank Switch

Pump float switches, which are correctly fitted, are required for the operation of effluent pumps. To determine the amount of liquid in septic tanks with pumps, a float switch located within the tank must be activated. As the liquid level in the tank rises, the float switch in the tank raises in response. Float switches turn on and off in proportion to the angle at which they are positioned. The cables that connect the float switches to the pump serve as a connection between them. These wires are stretched or shortened in order to give the appropriate swing to pump a certain amount of liquid.

A float switch that has been improperly fitted might cause damage to a pump or cause a drain field to become hydraulically overloaded.

Step 1

In order to determine the swing length and float switch height parameters, refer to the septic system design.

Step 2

Feed the wire from the float switch through the plastic mounting tabs on the mounting clamp and secure it with the clamp.

Step 3

Reduce the height of the effluent pump’s discharge pipe by lowering the pipe clamp until it meets the height stipulated in the septic design.

Step 4

To loosen the pipe clamp, use a screwdriver to turn it counterclockwise.

Step 5

Hold a tape measure vertically against the effluent discharge pipe to determine the length of the pipe. Change the position of the float switch from the “off” position to the “on” position.

Step 6

Adjust the wire tether on the float switch so that the swing measurement matches the swing measurement specified in the septic design.

Step 7

When the tether has been properly adjusted, use a screwdriver to tighten the metal tether clamp on the harness.

Step 8

Wrap two plastic wire ties around the metal clamp to secure it in place. Tighten the wire tie by inserting the end of the tie into the locking mechanism and tightening. This gives further assurance that the float will remain in place in the event that the metal clamp corrodes and fails.


When working around septic tanks, always sure to use protective gear.

Float Switches for Septic Tank Alarms

In the United States, approximately one-quarter of homes rely on a specialized septic system to handle their household wastewater. A septic system is a fragile system that is dependent on a number of biological and mechanical processes to function properly. Septic systems that are properly maintained are rarely in need of repair, but even the finest upkeep cannot avoid every problem. Because of this, an operational septic tank alarm system is an extremely critical component of any system. Septic tank alarms alert you when water levels in your tank rise to the point where backup or overflow is possible.

How does a septic system work?

Septic tanks are subterranean tanks that are normally found in the back or side yard of a residence. An intake pipe allows water from the residence – such as laundry waste, shower water, dishwater, and toilet waste – to enter the tank. Heavy solid waste sinks to the bottom of the tank (referred to as the “sludge layer”), while lighter waste, such as oil, floats to the top (referred to as the “scum layer”) of the tank. Clarified water is left in the centre of the container. The clean water is then discharged through a discharge pipe into a drain field that has been designated.

It is generally recommended that septic tanks be emptied of collected solid waste once every three to five years in order to avoid jams and backups.

Environment factors such as a drain field that is too saturated with water to absorb septic output, excessive water consumption, or clogs created by inorganic materials such as cigarette butts or sanitary napkins can also cause backup.

What happens when a septic system backs up?

It’s not a good sign. Septic systems may get clogged and allow sewage and solid waste to leak to the surface of the earth if they are not properly maintained. The problem is that it frequently overflows into the home itself, originating in backrooms, sinks, and washing machines. In addition to the environmental and hygienic consequences, a severe backlog will almost certainly cause damage to the septic system itself, necessitating costly repairs that might total several thousand dollars to remedy.

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This Is Where A Septic Tank Level Sensor Is Needed

Backups can be avoided by using a high-quality septic tank sensor in conjunction with regular maintenance and waste treatment. A floatswitch is programmed to sound an alarm when the water level in the tank becomes dangerously high, alerting you to the situation and allowing you to take steps to reduce water use and identify the source of the problem before it is too late. Even while most septic tank sensor alarm systems have the float switch set at a level where you will still have a day or two of regular water consumption before an overflow or backup is near, it’s still critical to conduct an investigation as soon as possible after receiving an alarm.

Choose SMD Fluid Controls for Your Float Switch

The septic tank level sensor may fail if the float switch is not trustworthy, resulting in a septic tank backup and the need for a replacement. If you’re installing or updating your home’s septic tank alarm system, make sure to use the best switch you can find in order to guarantee long-term performance and reliability. There is a large choice of float switches and other liquid level sensors available from SMD Fluid Controls that are ideal for use in septic tank alarm systems, including sump-style floats and horizontal switches as well as bespoke multilevel sensors and other options.

Get in touch today!

Septic tank alarms and float switches are included with your septic system if it employs a pump to transport wastewater from the tank and onto a drain field. Septic tank alarms and float switches are optional. When the float reaches an unacceptably high level, an alarm is activated to alert you that your tank may be on the verge of overflowing. It is possible for the float switch to fail and cause the alarm to ring even when the tank is not overflowing. Attempt solving the problem yourself first before calling a service expert for assistance.

Step 1

If the float’s alarm is sounding, turn off the alarm switch on the float. An overflow in the system or a defective float are both indicated by this condition.

Step 2

Anything plumbing-related in your home that discharges water into the septic system, such as the washing machine and dishwasher, must be turned off immediately.

Step 3

Reset the alarm by pressing the button on the wall. Wait between six and eight hours before turning on your water supply. If the alarm does not ring again after this length of time, it is likely that the problem is anything other than a sewage overflow.

Step 4

The float switch should not be turned off by checking the circuit breaker or the GFCI plug (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) for a trip. If moisture is allowed to enter the outlet, the GFCI plug will trip. When the circuit is tripped, a light will illuminate to show that it has happened.

Attempt to reset the GFCI plug by pressing the button on the plug, or turn off and on the circuit breaker to reset the circuit breaker. If the circuit breaker or GFCI outlet trips again, this indicates that there is a problem with the wiring or that there is moisture in the circuit.

Step 5

Check to see if the pump is activated by pressing the on/off switch on the float switch. A dead switch or a defective pump might be to blame if this doesn’t work for you.

Step 6

Examine any exposed cables and wires to determine whether they have been damaged.

Septic Tank Float Switches – For Pumps & Control Panels

Septic Solutions has a large selection of float switches for septic tanks and lift stations to meet your needs. Pump duty float switches are designed to regulate a submersible pump, automatically turning it on and off based on the amount of liquid in the pump tank inside the pump. Control duty float switches are designed to be connected directly to a control panel in order to inform the control panel when to turn on and off the pump, or to signal the high level or low level alarm based on the liquid level in your tank.

Pump duty switches and control duty switches are available in both mechanical and mercury activated configurations.

Pump duty float switches are designed to regulate a submersible pump, automatically turning it on and off based on the amount of liquid in the pump tank inside the pump.

Control duty float switches are also known as control duty float switches.


Pump switches are devices that are used to regulate the functioning of a submersible water pump. They have a larger current carrying capacity than control switches. These are often wide angle switches, which means that they must be rotated 90 degrees in order to be switched to the “ON” or “OFF” position. When managing a pump, this is necessary since you must be able to pump out a wide range of water, and it also prevents the float from being stopped by turbulence in the water, which is undesirable.

  • Because the float switch will be the conduit via which the power for the submersible pump will be sent, it must be capable of handling at least that amount of current.
  • It will be necessary to make a choice on how the amperage float will be mounted once you have determined which amperage float will be required for your application.
  • If you get a float switch that comes with a piggy-back connector, the installation is quite straightforward and straightforward.
  • a) Float Switch Installation That is all there is to it; your pump will only activate when the float is in the proper position to permit it.
  • Because floats are always two-wire devices, in order to install one on a pump, the float switch must be spliced into the “HOT” line coming from the power supply.
  • The final choice you have is to choose between mercury and mechanical filtration.
  • Mechanical switches are comprised of a ball bearing mounted on a track that rotates back and forth in both directions.

Even though mercury switches are supposed to be more dependable, they are not permitted to be used in some places (see our website for more information) and are only available in 13-amp configurations.


Control switches are intended to be used in conjunction with a control panel, and are mostly used for high and low level alerts. Low amperage and small angle are two characteristics that characterize these switches. When using narrow angle float switches, you must change the switch position by 10 degrees. As a result, they are extremely sensitive to changes in water level, making them ideal for use as high or low level alarms, respectively. Making a decision on which control switch to purchase is significantly less difficult.

Because it will be attached directly to a control panel or alarm box, no control switch will ever be supplied with a plug.

The “PUMP DOWN” variant will be utilized for notifications at the highest level.

How to Check Your Septic Panel and Pump Chamber

It is recommended that you inspect your pump chamber once a year to ensure that everything is in proper working order. Follow the 11-step procedure outlined below to complete this task on your own! (Do you require further assistance? Alternatively, you may watch our instructional video below.)

‍ 1. Let’s start by inspecting the panel. Make sure the power is on by verifying the power switch to the panel is on.

The following items should be included in this general overview: The electrical box may be seen in the lower left corner of the image below, starting at the bottom of the image. Check to verify that all of the cables are firmly connected before using it. Next, take a look at the lower right corner of the shot, where you can see the discharge pipe for the pump. Check to see if it is operational (valve should be lined up with pipe). It’s now time to have some fun!

‍ FIRST.PUT ON GLOVES!That is one step you DO NOT want to miss. Remove the float tree (the pipe with a pvc handle located upright left in our picture) and pull up the alarms.

*Please keep in mind that these instructions are for a 4-float system. Some systems contain only two or three floats.

If you don’t hear an alarm, this is cause for concern. Starting at the top, I will explain the floats and how to ensure each one is working.

NOTE: If your water supply is depleted, you may need to replenish it. Fill it up a little with water from a yard hose.

7. Continue testing.

Check that the pump is operating properly by flipping the second float from the bottom upside down and then turning it back around. With your other hand, turn the next float up (which would be the second from the top) upside down while still holding the first float. You should be able to hear the pump start up. As soon as you have confirmed that the pump is operational, just release these two floats. There’s one more float to go. The top float serves as an alert in case of high water. Turn it over down to see whether this is the case.

8. Now is the time to inspect the power cords.

Check to see that everything is securely tied to the float tree and not just hanging free. Zip ties can be used to reattach any stray cables.

9. Securely return the float tree to its holder and coil any dangling cords so that they are out of the water.

What exactly is a septic tank float switch, and what function does it play in the treatment of wastewater? A septic system, as its name implies, is comprised of a number of components that must all operate together in order for the system to function properly. The septic tank (which has multiple components as well), the drain field and drain pipes, and the plumbing system, among other things, are examples of components. All of these components, no matter how insignificant, play critical roles in ensuring that operations run smoothly.

You’ll have to stick around to find out the answers to any queries you have concerning this particular component.

An further topic we’ll look into is how to solve similar problems when they occur in the future. These and other issues will be covered in greater detail later.

Functions of A Septic Tank Float Switch

Some readers may be able to figure out what this item is all about just by looking at its name alone. No need to be concerned or embarrassed if you have no understanding what this is about. There is nothing to be embarrassed about. Isn’t it true that we’re all here to learn? Let’s get into the specifics without further ado. Float switches, in their most basic form, are sensors that signal to your pump when it is essential to turn on or off. It is necessary for the water level to have reached a certain level in order for the pump to be activated.

Take the weight of the world off your shoulders with this critical function.

All of this is carried out on an automated basis while you go about your everyday tasks.

Types Of Septic Tank Float Switches

In terms of selecting the most ideal float switch for your needs, there are several alternatives available to consider. Submersible sensors, pump duty floats, mechanical sump switches, control duty floats, and horizontal float switches are some of the most common types of float switches available. It is required to provide a more detailed explanation of how each of them functions, however brief, in order to better grasp them.

Submersible Sensors

Submersible sensors are a sort of septic tank float switch that is most commonly used in deep sewage tanks. One of the most advantageous characteristics of submersible sensors is their ability to fit into virtually any place. To put it another way, this float switch version is suitable for tight places. It is also advantageous to use a submersible sensor since it allows you to obtain continuous level data, as opposed to other types of sensors that only provide point-level observations. Is this, therefore, the greatest septic tank float switch currently available?

Mechanical Sump Switches

Mechanical sump switches are also referred to as ball float switches in some circles. This sort of septic tank float switch may be found in a variety of applications, including basement sump pumps and sump pumps. Mechanical sump switches are designed to perform a simple set of functions. Or, to put it another way, the on/off operation or functionality of this septic tank float switch variation is straightforward. In addition, this float switch may be used to initiate the pumping of wastewater at different rates.

Horizontal Float Switches

The design of the horizontal float switch varies depending on where it is put or positioned on the circuit board. They’re positioned within the septic tank’s walls and rise and fall in response to the amount of sewage present. Because of this movement, it is simple to regulate the water level within the tank.

Septic Tank Float Switches are Important for the Following Reason…

The septic system, by its very design, provides a crucial function in the treatment of waste water. During the course of a day, when wastewater is discharged into this holding facility, the septic tank allows it to separate into three distinct layers, which are: scum (at the top), effluent (in the middle), and scum (at the bottom). Effluent that has accumulated in the septic tank must now either be evacuated or pumped to a drain field or surface water. A critical component, such as the float switch, must be fitted in order to guarantee that the levels are properly controlled.

When backups occur, the impact of a defective float switch is now felt to the fullest extent. By simply ensuring that a float switch is installed and maintained properly, a calamity like this may be avoided entirely.

Common Issues Associated With Float Switch Failure

Float switches fail for a variety of reasons, three of which are discussed here. The existence of moving parts, poor maintenance practices, and selecting the incorrect device or switch for your septic tank are all examples of these issues. Any one of these factors is sufficient to generate issues in its own right.

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Presence of Moving Parts

There are certain float switches for septic tanks that contain moving parts. While they may initially operate admirably, the corrosive and toxic nature of the septic tank environment eventually causes them to fail. Consequently, the moving parts become blocked, and the system fails as a result of the accumulation of debris.

Poor Maintenance Habits

When it comes to keeping your float switch in excellent operating order, preventative maintenance is critical. As a result, inadequate maintenance practices will do nothing to assist you in keeping this critical septic tank component operational. Habits of failure result from a pattern of continuous carelessness or inadequate maintenance. Important to remember is that the failure of a single system component, such as the septic tank float switch, can result in extensive damage to the system. This is a circumstance you’d want to stay as far away from as you possibly can.

This technique include identifying any defects that might have an impact on critical components such as the septic tank’s float switch.

Choosing The Wrong Device For Your Tank

The sort of septic tank float switches that is most appropriate for your individual requirements is influenced by a number of factors, one of which is the purpose of the switch. Seeking expert assistance in the selection of the proper float switch equipment for your septic tank is your best option for success. Septic professionals or technicians have a more in-depth grasp of the components of a septic system. These specialists will often advocate some float changes over others based on their experience.

Septic tank float switches are critical components in septic systems because they help to maintain optimal operating conditions.

More crucial, though, is the requirement for something to operate at peak performance.

What do I do if My Septic Alarm is Going Off?

In the event that your septic alarm goes off, it may surely create some anxiety and uncertainty; and if you happen to be experiencing this right now, then you’ve arrived to the correct location! Don’t be concerned; it does not necessitate urgent action. Instead, take your time to go through this full essay so that you will be prepared to act now or in the future if the situation arises. What Septic Systems Are and How They Work The alarm works in conjunction with the septic system to alert you when the water level within the pump tank has increased to an unsafe level or has decreased to an unsafe level.

The timer is in charge of regulating the time intervals during which the pump is permitted to pump wastewater into the drainage system.

Thus, during periods of excessive water use, the drain field is kept from getting overflowing, which might cause damage to the drainage system.

A large amount of water is injected into the system in between pumping cycles for whatever cause, and the water has nowhere else to go but back into the system’s pump tank.

Depending on how much water was and continues to be put into the system and how the pump is set up to operate on a timer, it may take many pumping cycles until the water levels are returned to normal. Causes of the alarm going off in the first place

  1. There is an excessive amount of water being put into the septic system. This is the result of excessive water use, which might be caused by multiple loads of laundry, an excessive quantity of dishwashing, or a disproportionate number of long showers.
  1. Somehow, groundwater is making its way into the system. If there is an excessive amount of standing water surrounding the septic tanks, whether generated by rain or another source, the water may seep into the tanks and cause the internal water level to rise.
  1. It’s possible that one of the components of the septic system is malfunctioning. If anything goes wrong with your system — including the pump and floats — the alarm and timer will go off and the septic system will stop working correctly.

The Best Thing to Do If Your Alarm Goes Off Alternatively, if you hear an alert, you should press the red button or turn on the alarm box. The alarm will be turned off as a result of this action. There should be a red light and a green light on the alarm box, which should be situated someplace on the unit. The green light indicates that the alarm is operational and should be left on at all times. It is shown by a red light if the alarm is getting a signal from the pump tank indicating that the water level is increasing above or decreasing below what is expected.

  • If the breaker occurs to be tripped, look around the septic tanks to see if there is any standing water.
  • It is possible that the red light on the alarm box will go out on its own after allowing the septic system to operate for a couple of pump cycles (which should take approximately 10-15 hours).
  • If the red light turns off, it signifies that the system is operating properly and that it only needs to catch up with the extra water that has overflowed into the storage tank.
  • To be clear, an alarm signal from the septic system does not always imply that sewage is about to back up into the house right away.
  • Do you require septic system repair on a regular basis or emergency service?
  • Want to learn more about septic systems?


Some residences are equipped with septic systems rather than relying on the city’s public sewer system. It is your responsibility to maintain and clean your septic tank, which includes maintaining it in excellent functioning order and pumping it on a regular basis. If you own your septic tank, you are responsible for all of the cleaning and maintenance that goes along with it. In this case, a septic tank alarm system might be of great assistance to you. Unless you have an entirely new septic system put on your property, there’s a good probability that you already have a septic tank alarm placed someplace in your residence.

  • An overview of the many types of septic tank alarms Essentially, a septic tank alarm system is a gadget that monitors water elevation inside the tank and sends you notifications when the water level is much higher or lower than it should be.
  • It is recommended that all septic systems that include pumps be equipped with a timer that regulates when the pump can push waste water into the drain field.
  • Timer systems operate the pump for specific periods of time at specific times of the day.
  • When the controls cycle back and on again, the water level within the pump tank rises as a result.
  • The causes of rising water levels are as follows: There might be a variety of factors contributing to low tank water levels.
  • Repeatedly doing laundry, running the dishwasher continually, and having everyone in your home take a lot of long showers are all examples of practices that contribute to excessive water use.
  • Seepage may occur if there is an excessive amount of rain.
  • Alternatively, it is possible that anything is wrong with a septic component (pump, timer, alarm, floats).
  • Whenever your septic tank alarm is triggered, just press the red button or switch on the emergency alarm box to silence it.
  • Check to see that the septic system is operating properly and that there is no standing water around the tank before proceeding.

During this period, you should reduce your water consumption. Mike’s SepticMcKinley Sewer Services will answer any concerns you have concerning a specific septic alert in Prior Lake, Minnesota. We’re here to assist you!

How to Care for Your Septic System

Septic system maintenance is neither difficult or expensive, and it does not have to be done frequently. The maintenance of a vehicle is comprised of four major components:

  • Inspect and pump your drainfield on a regular basis
  • Conserve water
  • Dispose of waste properly
  • And keep your drainfield in good condition.

Inspect and Pump Frequently

Inspection of the ordinary residential septic system should be performed by a septic service specialist at least once every three years. Household septic tanks are normally pumped every three to five years, depending on how often they are used. Alternative systems that use electrical float switches, pumps, or mechanical components should be examined more frequently, typically once a year, to ensure that they are in proper working order. Because alternative systems contain mechanical components, it is essential to have a service contract.

  • The size of the household
  • The total amount of wastewater produced
  • The amount of solids present in wastewater
  • The size of the septic tank

Service provider coming? Here is what you need to know.

When you contact a septic service provider, he or she will inspect your septic tank for leaks as well as the scum and sludge layers that have built up over time. Maintain detailed records of any maintenance work conducted on your septic system. Because of the T-shaped outlet on the side of your tank, sludge and scum will not be able to escape from the tank and travel to the drainfield region. A pumping is required when the bottom of the scum layer or the top of the sludge layer is within six inches of the bottom of the outlet, or if the top of the sludge layer is within 12 inches of the bottom of the outlet.

In the service report for your system, the service provider should mention the completion of repairs as well as the condition of the tank.

An online septic finder from the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association (NOWRA) makes it simple to identify service specialists in your region.

Use Water Efficiently

In a normal single-family house, the average indoor water consumption is about 70 gallons per person, per day, on average. A single leaking or running toilet can waste as much as 200 gallons of water each day, depending on the situation. The septic system is responsible for disposing of all of the water that a residence sends down its pipes. The more water that is conserved in a household, the less water that enters the sewage system. A septic system that is operated efficiently will operate more efficiently and will have a lower chance of failure.

  • Toilets with a high level of efficiency. The usage of toilets accounts for 25 to 30% of total home water use. Many older homes have toilets with reservoirs that hold 3.5 to 5 gallons of water, but contemporary, high-efficiency toilets consume 1.6 gallons or less of water for each flush. Changing out your old toilets for high-efficiency versions is a simple approach to lessen the amount of household water that gets into your septic system. Aerators for faucets and high-efficiency showerheads are also available. Reduce water use and the volume of water entering your septic system by using faucet aerators, high-efficiency showerheads, and shower flow restriction devices. Machines for washing clothes. Water and energy are wasted when little loads of laundry are washed on the large-load cycle of your washing machine. By selecting the appropriate load size, you may limit the amount of water wasted. If you are unable to specify a load size, only complete loads of washing should be performed. Washing machine use should be spread throughout the week if at all possible. Doing all of your household laundry in one day may appear to be a time-saving strategy
  • Nevertheless, it can cause damage to your septic system by denying your septic tank adequate time to handle waste and may even cause your drainfield to overflow. Machines that have earned theENERGY STARlabel consume 35 percent less energy and 50 percent less water than ordinary ones, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Other Energy Star appliances can save you a lot of money on your energy and water bills.

Properly Dispose of Waste

Everything that goes down your drains, whether it’s flushed down the toilet, ground up in the trash disposal, or poured down the sink, shower, or bath, ends up in your septic system, which is where it belongs. What you flush down the toilet has an impact on how effectively your septic system functions.

See also:  What Is The Normal Water Level In A Septic Tank? (Solved)

Toilets aren’t trash cans!

Your septic system is not a garbage disposal system.

A simple rule of thumb is to never flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper down the toilet. Never flush a toilet:

  • Cooking grease or oil
  • Wipes that are not flushable, such as baby wipes or other wet wipes
  • Photographic solutions
  • Feminine hygiene items Condoms
  • Medical supplies such as dental floss and disposable diapers, cigarette butts and coffee grounds, cat litter and paper towels, pharmaceuticals, and household chemicals such as gasoline and oil, insecticides, antifreeze, and paint or paint thinners

Toilet Paper Needs to Be Flushed! Check out this video, which demonstrates why the only item you should flush down your toilet are toilet paper rolls.

Think at the sink!

Your septic system is made up of a collection of living organisms that digest and treat the waste generated by your household. Pouring pollutants down your drain can kill these organisms and cause damage to your septic system as well as other things. Whether you’re at the kitchen sink, the bathtub, or the utility sink, remember the following:

  • If you have a clogged drain, avoid using chemical drain openers. To prevent this from happening, use hot water or a drain snake
  • Never dump cooking oil or grease down the sink or toilet. It is never a good idea to flush oil-based paints, solvents, or huge quantities of harmful cleansers down the toilet. Even latex paint waste should be kept to a bare minimum. Disposal of rubbish should be avoided or limited to a minimum. Fats, grease, and particles will be considerably reduced in your septic tank, reducing the likelihood of your drainfield being clogged.

Own a recreational vehicle (RV), boat or mobile home?

If you have ever spent any time in an RV or boat, you are undoubtedly familiar with the issue of aromas emanating from sewage holding tanks.

  • The National Small Flows Clearinghouse’s Septic System Care hotline, which may be reached toll-free at 800-624-8301, has a factsheet on safe wastewater disposal for RV, boat, and mobile home owners and operators.

Maintain Your Drainfield

It is critical that you maintain the integrity of your drainfield, which is a component of your septic system that filters impurities from the liquid that emerges from your septic tank once it has been installed. Here are some things you should do to keep it in good condition:

  • Parking: Do not park or drive on your drainfield at any time. Plan your tree plantings so that their roots do not grow into your drainfield or septic system. An experienced septic service provider can recommend the appropriate distance for your septic tank and surrounding landscaping, based on your specific situation. Locating Your Drainfield: Keep any roof drains, sump pumps, and other rainfall drainage systems away from the drainfield area. Excess water causes the wastewater treatment process to slow down or halt completely.

r/Plumbing – Why does my septic system has separate ON and OFF float switches?

If this is of any assistance, please let me know. (I am not a plumber, but I recently finished replacing the gray water tank system at a private campground, and we had to go through this torment. The two floats are designed to allow the pump to cycle in extended on/off intervals in order to reduce pump wear caused by excessive cycling, which is undesirable. Take into consideration the following: We have a 500-gallon tank that is supplied by 12 showers, which is our configuration. In this case, a “on” float is set at around 450 gallons, and a “off” float is set at approximately 100 gallons (we don’t want the pump to run out of water).

  • It takes around 20 minutes for the pump to run on average from the time the “on” float activates the pump to the time when the “off” float turns the pump off.
  • Whenever the “on” float is triggered, the controller continues to operate the pump until the “off” float is activated, guaranteeing that if the pump is required to operate, it will do so for a reasonable amount of time until the tank is empty.
  • The fact that the float got stuck in the “on” position and pumped the tank dry before refusing to shut off even though there was no more water to pump was the reason we had to completely redesign the entire system in the first place.
  • You may experience rapid cycling if the water level is only just high enough to turn on the float.
  • For a long time before we were ultimately granted permission to completely refurbish the tank, the float would alternate between on and off, and the pump would rapidly cycle in short bursts for 1 minute until the pump overheated and shut off.
  • Smaller pumps (such as the sump pump you described) are less sensitive to power needs, and because they often do not require starting circuits (capacitors, relays, and so on), they require a far more straightforward wiring arrangement.

Your pump controller appears to be capable of controlling two pumps (refer to the duplex systems employing the HIGH WATER and LAG/OVERRIDE floats), but I couldn’t tell you for certain without seeing an image of the controller wire itself. I hope this has been of use in any way.

Does Your Septic System Require A New Pump?

A septic tank’s waste and sewage are evacuated from it and discharged into a drain field, either by gravity or with the assistance of a septic system lift pump. In most cases, a septic pump is not required if the waste can flow at a rate of at least two feet per second through the system using gravity alone. Pumps are typically required for septic tanks that are located lower than the drain field and for which gravity is unable to transport and/or force the effluent out of the tank due to its location.

Know If Your System Uses A Septic Effluent Pump Or Septic Grinder Pump

Knowing what sort of pump your septic system is equipped with is critical to the overall operation of the system. A septic effluent pump is a device that transfers waste from a septic tank to a drain field. A septic grinder pump is responsible for the grinding and movement of human waste and toilet paper. Septic tank businesses in Gainesville, FL such as Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service can help if you’re not sure what sort of pump the system is using or where it’s located in the system. Our professionals will identify the pump and check the septic system in order to notify you of the procedures that need to be taken in order to keep all components in proper operating order.

How Septic Pumps Work

A septic pump is a sort of submersible pump that is installed in either the last chamber of the septic tank or in a separate chamber outside the main tank of the system. As waste builds up in the chamber, it activates a float switch, which then activates the septic pump. After that, waste is forced up the outflow pipe and into the drain field by an impeller. Installing a septic tank pump alarm is an excellent strategy to avoid having to clean out your septic tank on a regular basis. One of our professionals will connect the float switch to an alarm panel, which will sound if the pump fails for any reason during the installation.

This alarm will ring and notify you if there is a sewage backup in your home.

Maintenance For A Septic Pump

The upkeep of a septic pump goes hand in hand with the upkeep of a septic system in its whole. Never drain or flush any of the following common home objects to avoid the need for emergency septic service and to ensure the pump’s long-term functionality:

  • Baby wipes
  • Cat litter
  • Fats, oils, and/or grease produced by or utilized in the preparation of meals
  • Dental floss
  • Personal hygiene products
  • And Q-tips or other cotton swabs are all recommended.

In addition, avoid using the garbage disposal because this can cause the septic tank to fill up more rapidly and force water into the tank, among other things. If there is an excessive amount of water entering the septic system, it can cause sediments to enter the septic pump, resulting in a probable blockage in either the pump or the drain field. If or when this occurs, contact Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service for prompt and dependable septic tank repairs.

Common Septic Pump Issues

Even with proper maintenance, a septic pump can develop a variety of problems over time, including the following:

Noise Or No Noise

There are occasions when it is possible to hear the septic pump operating within the chamber itself.

Do not hesitate to contact us for septic service if it appears that the pump is having difficulty or is failing to transport waste effectively.

Leaking Into The Septic Tank

The septic pump is equipped with a check valve, which provides a pressure gradient in order to keep the waste flowing through the pump and into the drainage system. Whenever the valve wears down or breaks, waste is forced back into the septic tank, causing the tank to overflow and back up into the pipes.

Faulty Float

Floats can become stuck open or closed, or they might become damaged as a result of material entering the septic tank. Depending on the extent of the damage, a professional from Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service may be able to remove the debris or may need to replace the float entirely.

Burnt Out Motor

If the motor within the septic pump burns out or fails, the pump will be unable to transfer waste, even if the energy is still being supplied to the device, since the waste would be trapped. In most cases, replacing the pump will address the problem.

Installing A New Septic Pump Or System

Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service will replace your septic tank if it is essential, and they will also install a new pump. Everything begins with an application, which is needed by the Florida Department of Health. We will always assist you in filling out the application and applying for any permissions that may be required. Our professionals will be pleased to walk you through the procedure and answer any questions you may have along the way.

Septic Tank Service

Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service can solve any septic issue, regardless of whether your sewage system currently has a pump or if you’re interested whether installing a pump will increase the system’s overall efficiency. When performing septic tank repairs in Gainesville, our specialists take into consideration the demands of the family or company. Call Jones PlumbingSeptic Tank Service immediately to make an appointment for septic service!

Septic Pump Components

Septic tank alarms and float switches are required if your septic system is equipped with a pump to take wastewater from the tank and discharge it onto a drainage field. When the amount of water in the tank rises over an undesirable level, the float rises with it. If the float flips, an alarm will sound, alerting you that your toilet may overflow if the problem is not treated immediately. It is possible for the float switch to fail and cause the alarm to ring even when the tank is not overflowing.

Troubleshooting probable float switch difficulties includes the following steps:

  1. Check to see if the pump is activated by pressing the on/off switch on the float switch. You may have a faulty pump, or you may have a dead switch
  2. Whichever is the case, you should replace it. Make a visual inspection of all exposed cable or wires for signs of damage. It is possible to connect the pump directly to a power source, bypassing the switch, in some cases. You, on the other hand, are now running the pump in manual mode. The pump will need to be unplugged in order to be turned off, or else it will burn out. If the pump does not turn on when the switch is bypassed and there is power to the pump, there might be a number of various reasons for this. This will be a problem that will need to be resolved. Make a phone call to Lentz Wastewater.


Pumps of various sizes are controlled through the use of control panels. Simplex Control Panels are used to regulate the operation of a single submersible pump. Simplex panels are equipped with a high water alarm, fuses for the alarm circuit, and circuit breakers, among other features. Residential and business locations with a single pump can benefit from these control panels. Duplex Control Panels are used to regulate the operation of two submersible pumps at the same time. High water alarms, fuses, and circuit breakers are all included in these panels.

Throughout the day, Time Dosing Control Panels send wastewater to a secondary system through the use of timers. The use of a cycled timer in conjunction with time dosing makes it feasible to distribute to a secondary system. Parts of the Control Panel:

The usage of a Control Panel is common in pump applications when automated electrical cycling of the pump is sought for extra protection, such as in home or commercial settings. It is necessary to have a control panel for any system that uses a non-automatic pump. The pump control box’s primary function is to safeguard both the pump and the pump motor.

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