There are three types of sump pump float switches mechanical, magnetic, and digital. Each has its own set of pros and cons that make it better or worse for certain applications.
Mechanical float switches are the most common type. They’re simple and reliable, but they can get stuck in the “on” position if there’s any debris in the sump pit. Magnetic float switches are less likely to get stuck, but they’re more expensive and can be harder to install. Digital float switches are the most expensive option, but they offer the most features and are the easiest to install.
Which type of sump pump float switch is right for you will depend on your needs and preferences. If you want a simple, reliable switch that won’t break the bank, a mechanical float switch is a good choice. If you’re willing to spend a little more for added peace of mind, a magnetic float switch is a good option. And if you want the easiest installation and the most features, a digital float switch is the way to go.
Sump pumps are essential for millions of homeowners who want to keep their basements dry. This is why we want them constructed using the highest quality materials and workmanship so that we don’t have to worry about anything else.
When most people pick their sump pumps, they don’t realize that there’s another critical component to think about: the switch. It’s one of the most crucial elements in a sump pump system, and it may make or ruin it.
In this post, you’ll learn what a float switch is and how it works, as well as the different kinds of sump pump switches. Plus we’ll reveal our favorite choice for each category.
Benefits: Stainless Steel, Tethered Float Switch.
Benefits: Material: Plastic, Style: Submersible, Sump Pump.
Benefits: Brand: LevelGuard, Style: Non-Sewage, light weight 1.8 Pounds.
What is a sump pump float switch?
A sump pump float switch is a device that turns the pump on and off as needed. It consists of a float (usually made of Styrofoam) that rises and falls with the water level in the sump pit. As the water level rises, the float goes up and triggers the switch to turn on the pump. When the water level drops, the float goes down and turns the pump off.
The sump pump is turned on and off automatically by a sump pump switch that detects the water level in the sump pit. You won’t have to manually check the basement water level to start and stop your pump this way.
Types of sump pump float switches
There are three types of sump pumps float switches: mechanical, magnetic, and digital. Each has its own set of pros and cons that make it better or worse for certain applications.
- Mechanical float switches are the most common type. They’re simple and reliable, but they can get stuck in the “on” position if there’s any debris in the sump pit.
- Magnetic float switches are less likely to get stuck, but they’re more expensive and can be harder to install.
- Digital float switches are the most expensive option, but they offer the most features and are the easiest to install.
Which type of sump pumps float switch is right for you will depend on your needs and preferences. If you want a simple, reliable switch that won’t break the bank, a mechanical float switch is a good choice.
If you’re willing to spend a little more for added peace of mind, a magnetic float switch is a good option. And if you want the easiest installation and the most features, a digital float switch is the way to go.
Some Best Sump Pumps Float Switches
1. Tethered float switch
The most common type of float switch is the tethered float switch. As its name suggests, this type of switch has a float that’s attached to a tether, which is connected to the pump. The tether keeps the float from getting stuck in the “on” position, as can happen with a mechanical float switch.
When the water level rises, the switch floats and causes the position of a steel ball within it to change. The ball pushes a lever that pushes a smaller switch, which activates the pump.
The steel ball returns to its original position when the water level drops once again, shutting off the pump.
In the event of a blackout, you can use this switch to turn on the pump, which will drain the sump pit. The basin or debris will get caught in it, and it’ll be impossible to turn on your pump again if you’re trying to fill up a leaking pipe.
The disadvantage of this type is that, in order to fit properly, the length of the cord must be shortened. You also reduce the range of operation of the pump by doing so. The best thing about them is that they last longer than vertical float switches if you clean anything adhering to it that might weigh it down.
2. Vertical float switch
A vertical float switch is very similar to a tethered float switch, but the tether is replaced by a weighted rod. The rod keeps the float from getting stuck in the “on” position, just like the tether does.
The vertical float switch is a type of float that goes straight up or down along a vertical pole. It’s well-suited for narrow sump basins 14″ and under in diameter, thanks to the design. Although it would function equally as well in larger basins.
The obvious disadvantage of using vertical float switches, particularly in narrow basins, is that their vertical motion is frequently considerably less than that of tethered switches. This means it will only move half the volume of water each time it cycles on and off. The pump’s cycles between on and off may be shorter, which can cause the pump to overheat.
To overcome this, several businesses have devised methods to adapt the knob to fit different situations, such as making it adjustable.
3. Electronic float switch
The most sophisticated type of sump pump switch is an electronic float switch. It uses sensors to evaluate the water level, so it’s less likely to become clogged in the “on” position. Furthermore, it has features like a built-in battery backup and an LCD screen.
Electronic switches are the most dependable switches available since they do not contain moving components. They’re also quite handy in tighter places, like as a vertical float switch. They work by generating an electric field that detects water around them.
Leak detection switches, as the name implies, detect leaks. They can operate for a longer period than mechanical ones but are more expensive in terms of their dependability. You should simply check on them from time to time depending on the amount of debris and minerals in your water to remove any accumulation that might distort how it reacts to the level of water.
Electronic float switches are more reliable and have a longer lifespan than tethered or vertical float switches. They’re also less likely to become clogged, thanks to their sensors. The only drawback is that they’re more expensive than the other types of switches.
Frequently Ask Questions
What is a float switch?
A float switch is a device used to activate and deactivate a sump pump. It is activated when the water level rises, and deactivated when the water level drops. Basically, once the water rises in the sump basin the switch turns on and the pump starts when the water drained out the switch turns off and pump stops.
Some float switch comes with a float cord and piggyback plug for smooth installations.
What are the different types of float switches?
There are three types of float switches: tethered, vertical, and electronic. Tethered and vertical floats switches are activated by the movement of water, while electronic floats switches use sensors to detect the water level.
Which type of float switch is best?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Depending on your specific needs, one type of float switch may be better than another.
Are float switches expensive?
Electronic float switches are the most expensive type of float switch. Tethered and vertical float switches are less expensive, but they may not last as long or be as reliable as electronic float switches.
What is a piggyback switch?
A piggyback switch is a type of float switch that is used in conjunction with another float switch. It is typically used as a backup in case the primary float switch fails.
Do I need a float switch?
If you have a sump pump, then you will need a float switch to activate and deactivate the pump. Float switches are an essential part of any sump pump system.
How do I install a float switch?
The installation process will vary depending on the type of float switch you have. Generally speaking, however, you will need to connect the float switch to the sump pump via a wire or hose.
How often should I check my float switch?
You should check your float switch periodically to make sure it is working properly. Depending on the type of float switch you have, you may need to clean it more frequently.
What are the benefits of an electronic float switch?
Electronic float switches are the most reliable type of float switch. They are less likely to become clogged, and they have features like battery backup and an LCD screen.
What are the drawbacks of an electronic float switch?
The only drawback of an electronic float switch is that it is more expensive than other types of float switches.
Float switches are an essential part of any pump system. They are used to pump starts and stop the pump, and they come in three different types: tethered, vertical, electronic, and diaphragm switch.
Tethered float switches are the most common type of float switch. They are activated by the movement of water, and they are less expensive than other types of float switches. However, they may not last as long or be as reliable.
Vertical float switches are less common than tethered float switches. They are activated by the movement of water, but they are more reliable than tethered float switches. They are also more expensive.
Electronic float switches use sensors to detect water levels. They are the most reliable type of float switch, but they are also the most expensive.
Never overlook to check your float switches on a regular basis, no matter what kind you choose. It’s critical to inspect your float switch on a regular basis, whether it’s one of the different types.
Sump pumps come in three different varieties, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. It’s up to you to pick the best one for you. Keep in mind that no matter which type you have, whether it’s a digital or float switch, a little TLC is always appreciated. But if you have diaphragm switches then it may have clogged with derbis and you may need to clean your diaphragm switch.
diaphragm switches are activated by pressure within a diaphragm to start and stop sump pumps automatically when the water reaches a certain level in your sump basin or basement.
- Remove any debris or build-up that might prevent the switch from operating normally.
- Look for any punctures or flaws on the switch.
- Confirm that the pump switches on and off at the proper times.
- Fill the basin with water and run the pump every two months to keep the mechanical switches from sticking if they get dried out for an extended period of time.