Septic - Float Help

Joined
Feb 16, 2005
Messages
904
Location
Scituate MA
Septic is about 5 years old. Weekend the septic alarm went off. Called and tech walked me through manually draining on the panel inside house. Worked, alarm went off and back to automatic on panel. A Tech from septic company was out today and he said the "on" float was potentially faulty. He "recommended" replacing all 3 pump floats at $135 an hr. and it would be about $600.:*******: Since it works and I wasn't home (told all this to wife)...I said no...I wanted to have a look and see if I could potentially do it.

I opened the grate and saw the 3 pumps, has anyone ever replaced one?
 
Joined
Dec 28, 2011
Messages
4,508
Really interested in hearing about this. I need to look up your system. I've never heard of an alarm or floats on a residential septic. Mine is gravity fed; single 1250gal tank; runs into a 250gal dosing chamber about 8ft downflow; and down a pretty steep hill for aways and into 5 rows of about 90ft of perforated pipe.

Something new to learn. Hope someone has solid advice for you.
 
Joined
Sep 22, 2013
Messages
160
Location
Georgia
Sounds like an aerobic septic to me. I've got one of those too.

Floats should be wired into the control with the wire run through a conduit into the pump chamber. You might have to pull the pump out and look at it though. My "on" float is wired as part on the pump like a submersible sump pump. My overfill alarm is separate into the control panel.
 
Joined
May 7, 2015
Messages
563
Location
AZ
you just wire them in, they are a mercury switch inside. sometime they get hung up and don't turn and face up when full, a stick will sometime unstick them and they'll kick on. but it's not hard to replace if they are bad. do you have 2 pumps or just one? one float turn the pump on, another triggers the alarm. seeing you said you have 3 floats i'm guessing 2 pumps or maybe a grinder pump? any electrician can replace them. it's really not hard to do. if youre ok with wiring you can do it.
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2004
Messages
27,991
Location
Near the beach in Delaware
An aerobic system has an air pump. It runs every other hour.

If your pump pumps sewage then you must have some situation where the sewage needs to be pumped up.
 
Joined
May 7, 2004
Messages
13,187
Location
Nokesville, VA
An aerobic system has an air pump. It runs every other hour.

It depends on the system. I have an EZ-Treat system that sprays the sewage water onto a bed of styrofoam beads. That cycle runs 2.5 minutes on 10 minutes off, with the majority of the water returning back to the septic tank and some of the water going to the pump tank, adjustable via a "dial a flow". The pump tank is where the drip irrigation field is watered from.
 

coopns

Thread starter
Joined
Feb 16, 2005
Messages
904
Location
Scituate MA
Here is a pic of the septic top and the electrical. After opening the green top where electrical connections are located, the cover is not sealed
on, screws were broken off the four corners. Obviously don't want moisture in there, should I lightly silicone around the top and put the cover on?
septic.jpg

pump.jpg
 
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Messages
2,106
Location
Northern Utah
The screws on the grey square box are the ones that are broken? Are they broken off in the box? I would be hesitant to seal the lid on with silicone sealant. That will make it difficult to get into later. Can you fix the screws? If no, what is involved to replace the box?

If it were mine, I would replace the wire nuts with the weatherproof type. Like these:


The are filled with a dielectric silicone sealant, and will protect the bare wire from corrosion.
 
Joined
May 7, 2004
Messages
13,187
Location
Nokesville, VA
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
1,357
Location
The IL
Sounds to me like you only need one float replaced, though I think they normally sell the on and off as a set. The high water alarm is working.
 

JTK

Joined
Aug 14, 2003
Messages
14,913
Location
Buffalo, NY
Man that's a lot going on. I'd call that a residential waste water treatment plant, not a septic system Wow!

I'm grateful my previous and current homes had a basic tank w/ old school leech field or sand filter systems with no pumps or any electronics needed.
 
Joined
May 7, 2004
Messages
13,187
Location
Nokesville, VA
Man that's a lot going on. I'd call that a residential waste water treatment plant, not a septic system Wow!

I'm grateful my previous and current homes had a basic tank w/ old school leech field or sand filter systems with no pumps or any electronics needed.

Nice thing about the aerobic treatment systems is that the drainfield will never fail. Ever.

According to the test results of the water in the pump tank on my system (pump tank is final tank before it goes to the drip irrigation system)...that water is clean enough to swim in. Fecal coliform CFU/100 mL is 1.8. Typical maximum allowed for swimming is 200 CFU/100 mL, according to https://oasisdesign.net/water/quality/coliform.htm

(The water in the pump tank on my system is tested once every two years to ensure that the system is operating correctly).
 
  • Like
Reactions: JTK
Top