Just installed a new Electronic Sump Switch

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by jackofalltradesman, Dec 30, 2006.

  1. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

    Messages:
    22
    My footing is in a water table so I am constantly pumping out water from the sump. In order to increase the reliabilty of the pump(switch) and to get the largest amount of water pumped on each cycle, I got the Wayne AU5ES electronic pump switch and then disabled the float switch on the pump. I am not an employee or shareholder of Wayne pumps but I want to mention that the switch works great, and I wish such switches were more common.

    Anway, after I disabled the switch on my sump I plugged it into this switch and then just set the water level by taping the blue lead to the pipe. The amount of time it pumps is set on the switch itself (you do that by trial, determining how long takes to take the water down to the bottom of the pit). There is also a red lead included for a high water alarm.
    http://www.waynepumps.com/viewaccess1.asp?acode=AU5ES

    http://www.waynepumps.com/images/products/AU5ES.jpg

    http://www.pumpbiz.com/images/cad_small/MIC_floodfree_misc.jpg
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2007
  2. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    You say you are not an employee or shareholder of Wayne but a similar reference to pumpbiz.com is glaringly omitted. Do you have any financial relationship with pumpbiz.com?
    There are people here who post links to their sites, but they openly acknowledge any financial relationships to such sites.
  3. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

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    52
    Interesting concept....my concern would be how well the electronic sensor operates in a pit where there is heavy scaling. I would fear that in time, the scale would coat the sensor to the point it may fail to perform?
  4. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

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    22
    Electronic switch much more dependable than float

    The pump and high water alert sensors for the electronic pump switch are two insulated wires with red and blue jacks respectively that look like RCA audio jacks on one end.
    You tie the wire leads onto your discharge pipe with wire ties or tape at the desired level.
    The wire ends are tinned by the manufacturer to avoid any fraying. The wires are entirely above the water line and there is redundancy with the high water sensor. I don't see any issue with scaling in terms of the wire and if there was, how that would prevent detection of water. This is the same type of detector that has been available for years as a high water alert system for sump pumps and water heaters.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2007
  5. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

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    52
    Zoellerpump, on a different note, I would love to see Zoeller modify the M-53 unit such that it becomes a piggyback switch design. Great pump....unfortunately the switch life is not as long as the pump and I've run into situations where basements have flooded and the homeowner cannot engage the pump manually. The N-53 is with a piggyback is a good alternative, however I've not found the pricing to be any less for an N-53 vs M-53 (plus I have to buy a switch).

    jackofalltradesman - I too like the concept of the Wayne switch idea. In our area, we can get significant build-up of mineral scale which has not only gummed-up some mechanical switch mechanisms (as you pointed out), but also fouled up some of those cheap backup 12v sump system switches (ex. low end basement watchdog switch). Granted if the switch is high enough, less odds of any problems...but if the switch is mounted at a level where it is constantly being triggered by water, then that's where my concerns came from.
  6. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Messages:
    104
    If you are wanting a Model 53 with a "piggyback" switch, then you will need to order a BN53, it is the pump with the "piggyback" switch.
  7. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

    Messages:
    52
    I was thinking that the BN53 had the "tethered" float switch design....I was hoping for the same M53 (non-tethered) switch with a piggyback plug design. Am I mistaken? I prefer the float mechnism on the M53 vs. a tethered unit.

    Thanks again.
  8. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

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    22
    ----------------------
    Carmel corn:
    There is no switch in the water with the Wayne electronic switch. The sensor is just an insulated wire with about 3/4" stripped and tinned at the end.
    It is always out of the water. When the water level gets close it triggers the electronic switch which turns on the AC for the sump.
    The BigDog battery backup sump switch is also out of the water. That system has alarms which are triggered when there is no power or there is high water. If it is constantly being triggered by water, it has been mounted too low.
  9. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

    Messages:
    52
    I realize that...but what I am staying is that if the water is constantly rising and triggering the wire (even though it's mounted above the water), that this constantly repeating cycle will lead to accumulation of scale on the wire tip. I understand the wire tip is not below the waterline, but it is being constantly "touched" by water each time it is triggered. IMHO - this still can cause some scale accumulation.
  10. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

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    22
    -----
    It isn't actually touched by the water. It senses ground when the water gets close. I believe the folks who designed this took oxidation into account and therefore, the wire is tinned with an alloy that appears to resist scaling and oxidation. No system is 100% bullet-proof but even if scale on the wire becomes an issue over time, cleaning or even replacing the wire would be a lot easier than getting into the water, removing the pump, etc.. to redo a tethered float switch.
  11. Rancher

    Rancher Guest

    That's a interesting concept, I wasn't able to verify that anywhere on the Wayne Pump site. Where did you get that information?

    Rancher
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2007
  12. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

    Messages:
    22
    Pumpbiz explains the switch on their site.

    http://www.pumpbiz.com/products/index.cfm?fuseaction=prod_performance&product_id=7686&product_name=Flood%20Free%20Switch&product_number=50470%20Floodfree&graph_large=Floodfree%5Ffeatures%2Ejpg&alt=floodfree%20switch[/URL]

    and, the corrosion proof wires:

    http://www.pumpbiz.com/products/index.cfm?fuseaction=pump_model_detail&product_id=7686

    In terms of the threshold that the switch senses humidity and bridges the electrical connection to ground, I cannot find that technical information for you. I can tell you that the wire is extremely sensitive...the moistness on one's finger tip triggers the switch, and, one can see that the switch is triggered just as the surface of the water appoaches the wire. Also, as indicated, the wires are corrosion proof and never sit in the water.

    I do not recommend the switch for you, but I do recommend it to the gentlemen that has the high water table and needs added pumping range, easy adjustability in the level that the pump operates, and added reliability for increased on/off cycles. I suggested another switch to him from Glentronics as well, but the Wayne switch works great for me.
  13. Rancher

    Rancher Guest

    Jack, thanks.

    However this statement from them in your second link kinda indicates the probe gets wet...

    "Water level settings are easily adjusted by pump ON timer (turns pump off after water level drops below probe). "

    Rancher
  14. bubb1957

    bubb1957 New Member

    Messages:
    60
    Location:
    Northern Ohio
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2007
  15. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

    Messages:
    22

    What we are talking about (a very thin wire tinned with an alloy that fights corrosion which is momentarily in contact with water) is so minimal that it is of no consequence to the reliability or operation of the sytem. The wire does not even gather an eye-drop of water or really, any perceivable water.
    As far as how it operates, I believe that there is a small current in the wire that detects ground, but I am not an electrical engineer so I may be wrong. As I mentioned, the switch gets triggered very easily, such when you touch the end of it with your finger, even without any water present.
    If I ever have an issue with the wire I will get a new one and plug it in, and let you know.
    Right now the thing looks as shiny and silver as it did when I put it in.
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2007
  16. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

    Messages:
    52
    Thanks. Interesting concept....have not seen this one before. I like the idea that it can bypass you primary pump switch if it malfunctions. I am not able to tell if the alarm float comes with the package or not. From a distance, the float itself resembles an SJE Rhombus vertical master design, but what throws me off is the plug connection to the side of the controller box. It looks like some kind of 3-prong configuration that is less common.

    My own pit is too narrow for the dual AC pump option, but the single pump comptroller coupled with a good 12v backup pump (for power outages) would give you yet another layer of defense. I've always been attracted to the original Sumpro product with the dual battery backup....very expensive, but nice.
  17. Rancher

    Rancher Guest

    That's an IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) female chasis plug, you'll see one on the end of the cord you plug into your computer, why they chose that style for an alarm output is unknown.

    Rancher
  18. carmel corn

    carmel corn New Member

    Messages:
    52
    Thanks Rancher...I see what you mean now about that plug configuration. I also took another look at their website and it appears that high level backup switch is included with the controller. It should be...given how much the unit retails for.
  19. jackofalltradesman

    jackofalltradesman New Member

    Messages:
    22
    __________
    That is not how the switch works so i wonder where you got that quote. The wire has nothing to do with turning the pump off. You set a timer ( 0 - 60 seconds) for the "off" on this switch.
  20. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,631
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    switch

    if it is like every other sensor probe, it turns on when water touches the probe and completes a circuit. Depending on a timer to turn the pump off however, is a very imprecise way to do it. GOOD sensors have a third probe which is the pump off point so it keeps pumping as long as the water level is between the two probe levels. The high water circuit normally only activates an alarm, it does nothing to try to start the pump if the pump on probe failed. In a two pump situation, with alternation controls, it, or something like it before it reached the high level alarm level, would try to start the second, inactive, pump.
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