Can I hard-wire a sewage pump?

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Old 09-09-16, 11:44 PM
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Can I hard-wire a sewage pump?

I have a Zoeller 912-1082 for a small detached mother-in-law unit (with which many of you have already helped me greatly on this forum). The pump comes with a 3-prong AC plug. However, I have it installed outside, and I'd much prefer to cut off the plug and hard-wire the pump, for a few reasons:
  1. that way the whole circuit can be protected within conduit;
  2. I don't have to worry about the plug getting pulled out and sewage backing up;
  3. The cord has fairly lightweight rubber sheathing on it, and the point where it enters the pump is underground... so the alternative is what, have the cord just snaking up out of the soil and into an outlet for the entirety of the pump's ~10 year expected service life?

Is hard-wiring the pump allowed? Are there issues I'm not aware of with this approach? I know the pump needs GFCI protection so my plan was to put it on a GFCI breaker.
 

Last edited by dlukas; 09-09-16 at 11:45 PM. Reason: clarifying
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Old 09-10-16, 05:38 AM
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You can use a septic or tank control box. They allow you to hard wire your pump and float switches and have a gasketed waterproof door. Most also have an alarm to let you know when something is wrong.
 
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Old 09-10-16, 06:48 AM
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I doubt that the cord is listed for use below grade. Can you dig a pit around the pump so it is not buried?
 
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Old 09-10-16, 08:35 AM
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You will need a disconnect if the pump motor is over 1/8 HP. This can be a simple weather proof switch.
 
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Old 09-11-16, 06:32 AM
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Although it is done quite often, cutting the cap off will probably void the 10 year warranty as well as UL listing.
 
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Old 09-11-16, 10:41 PM
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Sorry for the radio silence--thanks for all the responses. pcboss - the pump is listed for outdoor installation, and there are no special instructions about protecting the cord. Which surprised me, since I had the same concern. That's why I want to run conduit all the way into the pump's plastic housing.
 
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Old 09-12-16, 06:52 AM
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Conduit is considered a wet location. Even if sealed it will eventually fill with water. Why not four 4x4 posts surrounding the pump, a receptacle with an in use cover facing in on one post. Then build a box with no bottom to slip over the posts and cover the pump. If you need access the box can just be lifted off the posts.
 
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Old 09-14-16, 12:16 PM
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ray2047 - I started getting concerned after your comment so I just called Zoeller product support (I guess that should have been my first move). But just for anyone following along, he advised to just run conduit from the pump's housing to my junction. He assured me that this is a common practice, and that cutting off the plug does not affect the pump's warranty.

Thanks again!
 
 

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