How to Adjust Sump Pump Float Switch

How to Adjust Sump Pump Float Switch? [4 Easy Steps]

There’s no denying how useful a sump pump is for our household because it regulates the pumped water and eventually keeps our house dry.

A tethered float switch is used to indicate when water levels have reached a certain threshold. The float switch lies on the surface of the water and rises with the water. Then, the sump pump will begin working after this switch is turned on.

However, if the float fails to activate, the pump won’t start to operate. What can be a worse situation than this, right?

That’s why we’ve discussed how to adjust the sump pump float switch in this article. But before knowing how to adjust, let’s understand what a sump pump is and how it works first.

What is a Sump Pump?

what is a sump pump

A sump pump drains water from a sump basin, which is often placed in the basement of a structure. Basement waterproofing systems use a variety of drainage channels to remove rain or groundwater. They’re used in locations where basement flooding is common and to combat moisture.

How Does a Sump Pump Work?

How Does a Sump Pump Work

The whole operation of a sump pump is driven by the calibration of the pump and float apparatus. Most of the time, water is collected in a sump pit. And, when the water level increases, the float switch, which has been set to a specified level, rises in tandem with the water level.

However, It’s the float’s job to turn the pump on and off. When the float reaches a specified or predefined height, the pump automatically activates and starts pumping. In a nutshell, the float is responsible for turning on the sump pump.

The pump continues to operate until the float drops below a certain level, at which point the switch is disconnected! Once again, when the water level increases, the float rises in tandem with the water level. As time goes on, the pump begins to operate.

How To Adjust Sump Pump Float Switch: 4 Easy Steps

Here are some steps that you should follow while adjusting the sump pump float switch.

1. Remove the Power Source

Whenever you’re working with a sump pump, first of all, disconnect the pump from the power source. You can do it by either removing the extension cord or turning off the main power source.

Once you remove the power source, you can do the other task without any fear of electrocution since there’s a chance of a significant accident if electricity and water come together.

2. Adjusting the Float Up or Down

The next step is to adjust the float switch manually or electrically, depending on the water level in the basin. Adjust the height of your tether or rod to match the water level in your basin and pump.

3. Testing The Pump

After adjusting the float switch, it’s time to check the sump pump. To do so, reattach the power source and check the pump with a few containers of water.

As the water level increases, the pump should be activated and continue until the tank is almost empty.

4. Readjusting The Float Switch

After all the adjustments, if the float switch isn’t working, more adjustments might be required. With that being said, you can repeat the discussed steps one more time to adjust the float switch properly.

Where Should Sump Pump Float be Set?

Finding the right sump pump float height might be difficult because it takes little trial and error.

However, the Float Switch should be positioned a few inches above the top of your sump pump motor’s housing. According to your sump pit and the strength of your sump pump motor, the height of your sump pit will vary.

Sump Pump Float Switch Adjustment



How can I tell if the float switch on my sump pump is bad?

You may test the float switch by either filling your sump pit with water to elevate the switch or using a float switch tester. If you want to use your hands, you may elevate the switch manually until it is ready to switch. A faulty switch may be to blame if the level is high enough yet the pump does not operate as expected. You may use a continuity tester on the switch lead wires to ensure that it’s the switch and not another component in your system that is faulty.

How much water does a sump pump require before it begins to pump?

Once the float begins to rise, carefully pour around 20 liters of water into the pump pit. The pump should start at this moment. During operation, the water must be pumped out, and after it has done so, the pump should shut itself off.


Hopefully, now, you got to know how to adjust the sump pump float switch by yourself. Identify the issue with the sump pumps first.

Read the article carefully again and follow the instructions to repair the sump pump. If none of the above solutions works, then it may be time to replace your sump pump.

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