New ejector pump failure - float problem??

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Brenda, Aug 10, 2006.

  1. Brenda

    Brenda New Member

    Aug 10, 2006
    Anyone have any experience with a Myers sewage ejector pump? We're finally going to replace the below-listed dayton pump and float. They're pretty pricey, but I'm really wondering if it's a good one. Thanks.

    We have a dayton simplex sewage system (3xa92) less than one year old that has failed repeatedly since it's installation. We've isolated the problem we think -- the float fails to kick the pump on. We've removed the lid from the pit and watched what happens (this after we thought the float was getting hung up on something). The float is not hung up on anything, has about 5-6 inches of cable (too much??), but just fails to activate the pump. Any ideas? Sometimes the float kicks the pump on when the float's at a 45 degree angle, and last night it was completely vertical and didn't kick the pump on. The pump is good - works without the float fine. This thing fails about once per week and I now need to babysit it for every load of laundry I do - fails about every 5 or 6 loads- and I must say I have much more to do with my very limited free time. The pit is set up to accommodate laundry, toilet (not being used as of yet), shower (not used yet) and sink. I need to resolve this issue before I put expensive carpeting down the basement. Please help. Can the float, the switch (or whatever activates the thing), or cable be bad. At this point I'm leaning to just replacing this very expensive item just for piece of mind, but I thought I'd ask you all first. Thanks so much; we're at wits end!
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2007
  2. prashster

    prashster New Member

    Dec 7, 2005
    I think u diagnosed the pblm correctly. If it were me (and I'm pretty sure it will soon be me, since I'm living on borrowed time with my Flotec sewage pump) I'd get a Zoeller. (This is the point at which Zoellerpump swoops in like Batman to tell you which pump to get).
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  4. Mikey

    Mikey Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek

    Nov 8, 2005
    Hansville, Washington
    Less than one year old? Call Grainger (that part's a Grainger number) or Dayton customer service. They should at least send you a new float switch, possibly a new pump if the switch isn't easily replaceable. You might also read this thread:
  5. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Master Plumber

    Feb 6, 2005
    Sensitivity trainer.. plumber of mens souls
    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of
    just change the switch

    if the switch is not built into the pump
    and has a separate wire going up to plug into
    the wall........with the pump plugging into the back of it

    I usggest you just change the switchit ...... its pretty simple to
    just take that switch off the side of the pump....

    BUT if it is built into the pump and you have to do some major
    surgery to the pump......breaking down the top half assembly and
    basically rebuilding the damn thing just to change the switch,

    take the pump out and take it back....because
    you will never get it sealed back water tight again...
    its a total pain in the ass and will be an on-going --never ending ---problem

    I ---NEVER EVER-- break down sewge or sump pumps to change out the switches. is too much trouble and too much liability

    if the cam and seal dont hold up you run the risk of either a flood,
    or getting yourself or someone else lit up with electricity..

    just take it back
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2006
  6. Brenda

    Brenda New Member

    Aug 10, 2006
    Thanks - one addl. question

    The switch is not built into the pump (has the separate wire that plugs into the wall as you said). Is this something amateurs can do; we're not what you'd call "handy' by any stretch of the imagination. Also, I did try calling Grainger -- they didn't really want to speak with me given I'm not a professional, but did give me a number for Dayton which I will call.

    What do you think of the Dayton brand -- I really have no piece of mind and for a little over $500 I'm leaning toward replacing the thing; I do not know what mechanism activates the pump (the float does something, but what??). I like a sump-pump mechanism type -- any suggestions?? Any preferred brand?
    Thanks so much.

  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona

    In the old days the switch had two wires in it and a blob of mercury that flowed against them to turn the switch on. It was almost failure proof as long as the float inverted far enough to cause the flow. Modern switches have a mechanical mechanism which has to trip when the float inverts. This is prone to failure since it is a pivoting device. A new float switch fastened to the pump or pipe riser will cure your problem. Dayton is not a manufacturer. It is an in-house brand that is used by the actual manufacturer for Grainger to sell.
  8. Master Plumber Mark

    Master Plumber Mark Master Plumber

    Feb 6, 2005
    Sensitivity trainer.. plumber of mens souls
    indianapolis indiana - land of the free, home of
    just change the switch

    I am sure the pump is adequate......

    jsut go to any plumbing supply house

    or back to GRANGER and get yourself

    another mercury switch that the pump can plug into

    and simply clamp it to the

    verticle pvc pipe , (ss hose clamp and duct tape work best...)

    some minor adjustments to the

    proper hieght might be necessary, but its not all that difficult...

    then take that old switch back to granger for a credit......

    if they will give you a full refund , and you feel better

    about changeing it out,,,,,,, go get a ZOELLLER with

    a separate mercury float switch on it.....
  9. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Aug 23, 2005
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)
    Columbus, OH
    They really use these still? Mercury? Gorsh!
  10. sumppumppimp

    sumppumppimp New Member

    Sep 23, 2005
    We have about 7 different states that we cannot ship mercury floats to use in right now. Pretty soon it will all be mechanical float switches across the country because of the "no mercury allowed" rule!
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