The Septic Alarm

Having a licensed septic professional like Tri-County Septic, look over your septic system on a regular basis can save you time, money, and worry. Much can go wrong with your septic system, from corrosion in the tank itself, to an unprotected or malfunctioning float switch.

Newer septic systems have an alarm, some older ones do not, making it harder to know when the septic system is in trouble. However, if your system does have an alarm and your float switch is malfunctioning or doesn’t have the correct sealant to protect the wires, having an alarm does you no good. That green light just keeps blinking away.

The reverse of that is the alarm keeps tripping as if the septic system has a malfunctioning float switch. The job of the float switch is to detect when the water level in your septic system's pump tank is either too high or too low as either condition can cause damage to the system and this needs to be prevented. That is when the septic alarms are meant to go off.

  • Nothing lasts forever, and that includes the parts that are monitoring water levels.
  • The septic tank system alarm works with the use of a float that is placed inside the tank to monitor water levels. If the alarm continues to sound, call the septic company.
  • There will be a red light and a green light located on the alarm box. The green light should always be on.
  • If there is an alarm system installed in your septic tank, you might also hear a high-pitched noise when it is time to pump the tank.

A trickling noise, on the other hand, warrants an inspection from an experienced septic provider like Tri-County Septic to inspect the septic system.

What you don’t want to happen is the drain field becoming overdosed during periods of increased use. When a drain field is overdosed, meaning too much water entering it too quickly, it can be damaged, and the alarm prevents this from happening.

Causes for this to occur:

  • Too much water is being put through the septic system. From an uptick in laundry usage, more dishwashing than the usual amount, or many long showers, all can cause too much water usage.
  • Groundwater is getting into the system. The heavy rains of the spring and summer in NJ may seep into the tank. Standing water or puddles occurring around the septic tank is water that can seep into the tanks causing the water level to rise inside of the tanks.
  • Something can be wrong with one of the septic system’s components. The pump, floats, alarm, timer, etc. may have something wrong that is not allowing them to work properly.
  • This you can do on your own: Use as little water as possible during a period of 10-12 hours. If the red light goes out, the system is working properly. It needed to catch up with the additional water that was introduced into the system.

An alarm signal does not mean sewage is about to back up into the house. Alarms are installed to give you 24-48 hours of usage until sewage may start to back up. Of course, there are plenty of DIY videos for swapping out a float switch or coating wires and connectors, however, remember the whole of your septic system is filtering out contaminants, the fumes of which are often deadly. Call the experts at Tri-County Septic for the well-being of your family and the continuing health of your septic system.