Switching from Ejector to Grinder Pump

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by chrisconq, Oct 12, 2005.

  1. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    I am so glad I found this forum. Our house is 5 years old and we have been struggling with our sewage pump for about 3 years. I have had it cleaned out numerous times and eventually replaced. Recently a local plumber told me that I had the wrong type of pump installed in the first (and second) place. It is along the lines of a Hydromatic SP40 Ejector pump. He told me that I needed a grinder pump instead of an ejector pump because an ejector pump is more suited for an addition or basement. This problem has gotten worse over the years as my family has grown in size. I can't begin to describe the problems we are having with sewage in the side lawn. I can't afford to have one installed (quoted around $5,000) but I want to buy the pump and try to install it myself with some help. My question is what differences are there with electricity and what type, size, gpm, etc. do I need for a single family residence grinder pump? Also, what price range am I looking at to buy this pump and where is a good place to look? Thanks in advance for any and all help!!
  2. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    What is this pump for? City sewer, septic tank, effluent tank etc. Is it for the whole house or a basement add on?


    bob...
  3. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    This is going to the city sewer line. It is for a 3 bedroom, 2 bath, one family residence. I am somewhat below street level with about 200 feet of road clearance.
  4. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    Where is the tank that the pump will go in? What size is the tank? Is this sewer a pressure line or just a gravity line?


    bob...
  5. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Messages:
    104
    Difference

    between "grinder" and "ejector" pumps is that ejector pumps are going to be able to push 2" spherical solids up and out of the pit through your 2" lines, the grinder pumps are going to macerate everything up into a slushy and have a higher head capabilities! IMO I think a sewage ejector sized to your particular application would be the correct choice!
  6. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    The tank that we currently use with our existing pump is underground between my house and my driveway. I am not sure what type of line it is. How would I find out?

  7. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    The model that I currently have installed is capable of ejecting solids of 1 1/4". Are you saying I need something that pumps out 2"? Also, it seems as though this model is the smalles that Hydromatic makes. Is this my problem? This was not an issue until my children began to get older. We went from 2 adults, 1 toddler, and one infant to now having 2 adults, 2 elementary school kids, one toddler, and one infant.


  8. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Messages:
    104

    Is your pump in it's own basin or is it in a septic tank?? When you say you have had it cleaned out, what exactly is being cleaned out? Any sewage ejector should be able to pass 2" spherical solids!

    Just because your family has grown doesn't necessarily mean you have to get a larger pump, you still only have 2 bathrooms 1 kitchen and a washing machine, is this correct? If it is, you're still only in the neighborhood of 16 - 20 GPM, which is very common for a house of this size! I think the problem could be with the pump not working correctly is, it can only handle 1 1/4" solids and also if you are allowing any type of femine hygiene products to get into your system, this would also cause problems!

    Your other question's earlier was what type of electricity is used with grinders, normally you have to have 230 volt for them! Prices are going to vary for grinders but it's the installation services that are going to be different also! You can do a search on the web to find different manufacturers of grinder too! I hope this helps! :D
  9. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Since we had the new pump installed about 1.5 years ago we have not put one square of toilet paper or ANY other paper products down that drain. It still only went about four months before my red light came on and sewage came out. The other problem is I don't think they sealed the lid properly after the new install so guess where the sewage is coming when it doesn't work properly!! The pump itself is housed in a plastic basin with a lid. When they clean it out they dig it up, take off the lid, and go to town cleaning out the "sludge." Do you think buying a better model ejector pump will do the trick? I would rather spend 500-600 dollars and do it myself than spend 1600 dollars plus install. I am just so frustrated because I have been dealing with this so long I just want it fixed. My plumber offered two suggestions. 1) Grinder pump, $5,000 or 2) Septic Tank, $2,500. I do not want to spend either and I would rather take advantage of the city sewer instead of a septic tank. Any other thoughts?



  10. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    That seems a little steep for a grinder pump. Unless your grinding for the entire neighborhood. Or does this mean someone put a little sump pump in a very small basin underground and thought that would work? This sounds like the problem to me. If you don't know how large this basin is, you might want to find out. If it's very small, it may need to be made bigger and the proper pump installed to do the job.


    bob...
  11. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    What size basin is a normal size? I am not sure but I can look at a list of sizes and guess based on what I have seen.
  12. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    You really need someone local to have a look. All we are doing is a lot of guessing and that's not helping your situation. I would call around and find someone that is willing to do the work needed without costing you an arm and a leg.


    bob...
  13. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Messages:
    104

    For sewage it could be anywhere from 18" x 30", 24" x 36", or who knows, there are quite a few different sizes out there to choose from! I agree with Bob about trying to get another recommendation from someone in your area! ;)
  14. chrisconq

    chrisconq New Member

    Messages:
    7
    Just a follow up. I dug up my pump (piece of cake) and when I turned the breaker back on (spur of the moment idea) it just started working. After months of barely working at all it just started up and drained the entire basin. So, I had the kids turn on all the tubs, flush the toilets, etc. All was great for a while and then.....back to not working. So, after mowing the grass and washing the van I decided to try another crazy idea. So, I took my shovel and firecly tapped on the pipe coming out of the pump to the street. Voila! It came back on and has been working ever since then (more than 24 hours). I have been using it with no problems. I am not covering it back up yet. I am contemplating moving it to a better location and possibly keeping it at ground level so I don't have to keep digging it up in case of future issues.
  15. speedbump

    speedbump Previous member

    Messages:
    4,540
    Location:
    Riverview, Fl.
    Sounds like your float is getting hung up in the pit. Beating it with a shovel may have jarred it loose temporarilly. This would tell me the pit is too small.


    bob...
  16. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Messages:
    104
    It could be that the mechanical switch is going bad inside the pump! If I were you, I would contact the manufacturer of the pump and order a new switch for it and replace it yourself! Very easy and should be cheap depending on what brand of pump you have! Also don't forget to order a new gasket to replace the old one. ;)

    If it is a piggy back type of switch just replace it which is a lot easier and you'll be set! :D
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