Troubleshooting a Sewer Grinder Pump

A sewer grinder pump is an essential waste-management device that keeps the drain pipes and the sewer unclogged. As soon as the device has reached its maximum holding capacity, the grinder switches on and pumps the waste out into the central sewer line. If the device does not seem to work correctly, here are some troubleshooting tips.

The Motor Does not Run

Check the circuit breaker to see if it is open or find out if the fuse has blown. Turn on the circuit or replace the fuse to ensure that the motor is connected to electrical power. If the fuse or breaker is okay, then just wait for the motor to cool down for a few minutes before turning it on again. Check the power cables as well for any sign of damage. Be careful when working with live wires. Turn off the electrical power first. Replace the damaged wires.

The motor may also refuse to run due to damage in the cutter or cutter ring. Locate the grinder pump, unplug it from the power source and inspect these parts. If they are dull, replace them with new ones. Install the cutter and cutter ring, plug in the device and check if it works.

The Pump Continues to Work Non-stop

If this is the case, it must be airlocked. To remove the locked air, turn the device off for a minute or two then restart it. Let it run for a few minutes. If the airlock persists, continue stopping and restarting it until the pump is cleared.

The issue may also be due to excess in the flow capacity of the pump. If the flow of wastewater is equal or more than what the pump can handle, the motor will continue to run. Replace the pump with a larger one or buy a second pump to handle the increased flow.

No Effluent Delivered from Pump  

Inspect the check valve if it is plugged, stuck, or installed the other way. Clean any debris from the valve and clean its surfaces. If it is installed backwards, remove it and reinstall it correctly. Always follow the directional arrows so that the valve goes along with the flow of the pump and not against it.

An airlock will also cause the same issue. Follow the steps mentioned above to clear the airlock. Inspect the impeller as well for any sign of damage. Replace it if necessary. Be sure to disconnect the device from the power supply before doing so.

Constant Pump Cycles

Inspect the pump if it has a discharge check valve. If none is found, install one.  If one is installed, check if it is stuck or damaged. Remove the valve and re-install it correctly. Clean any debris on its surfaces. If it is damaged, better replace it with a new one. If the pump is too small for the volume of water flowing into the sewer, then invest in a larger pump or have a second one installed. If the pump is still in good condition, installing a second pump is more economical.