What Is a Sewage Ejector Pump and How Does It Work?

sewage ejector pump

Every city needs a solid plumbing system. Without it, you’d have no water for drinking, cleaning your dishes, or even flushing your toilet. That’s why reliable plumbing isn’t just handy—it’s absolutely vital for sustainable, vibrant urban life.

For the most part, plumbing is facilitated by the natural force of gravity, which moves water and waste on a downward slope to its destination. Sometimes gravity-fed systems aren’t possible, however, and an alternative system is necessary.

The solution to this problem lies in a device called a sewage ejector pump. But tackling the care and installation of these pumps can be tricky.

Chicago Sewer and Drain professionals are here to take the guesswork out of your plumbing system. With emergency services as well as repair, maintenance, and professional installation available, we are your one-stop shop for a hassle-free plumbing experience.

In this article, we’ll explain what a sewage ejector pump is, its advantages, and the concerns and solutions for homeowners who rely on these pumps to transport their wastewater.

What is A Sewage Ejector Pump?

submersible sewage pumps

In simple terms, a sewage ejector pump is a machine that helps move your household’s wastewater from low to high ground.

Certain home configurations don’t work with gravity-reliant plumbing systems. Additionally, many homes, especially those with basements or facilities below street level, have bathrooms or laundries that are lower than the main sewer line. The appliances used in these rooms require a lot of water—and that water needs somewhere to go.

A sewage ejector pump is necessary to facilitate the upwards flow of water so it can reach the sewer line. It’s also essential for keeping things clean and running smoothly. With its ability to move large volumes of water quickly and efficiently, the sewage ejector pump has become increasingly important for areas where gravity-fed plumbing is ineffective.

How Does a Sewage Ejector Pump Work?

The sewage ejector pump sits in a special tank called a sump basin. The basin collects wastewater from your home’s basement. As the water level rises, it triggers a float switch, which then activates the pump.

Wastewater is forcefully pushed upwards against gravity, allowing it to flow into the main sewer line. The pump then deactivates once the water level drops, awaiting the next cycle.

This process is crucial and ensures that wastewater is effectively and hygienically removed from your home. Without it, wastewater could back up. This is not only a major inconvenience, but it could lead to possible damage to the infrastructure of your home or to your personal belongings. Not to mention, unsanitary wastewater increases certain health risks.

how does sewage ejector pump work

What Do I Need Before Sewage Ejector Pump Installation?

Installing a sewage ejector pump requires careful planning and preparation. Before installing your pump, you will need to determine the type of system needed and select the correct model for your application. You also must consider factors such as flow rate, motor size, and power supply.

Proper installation also requires knowledge of plumbing basics and safety procedures, given the potential hazards associated with wastewater treatment systems. Make sure that any work done on a new or existing system complies with all applicable codes and regulations in order to prevent liabilities.

While “DIY-ing” may be tempting, it’s highly recommended that a licensed plumber completes the installation process of any sewage ejector pumps. This ensures that everything is properly installed and functioning safely.

Incorrect installation might cause pump failure, leading to sewer backups, water damage, and health hazards. Inappropriate handling can also cause personal injury. In this case, the risk isn’t worth the reward.

sewage ejector pump pre-installation

Better Sewage System for Chicago Residents

Chicago’s unique city infrastructure, coupled with its unpredictable weather, can sometimes add complications to plumbing systems. Heavy rainfall can put stress on the sewage systems, potentially leading to backflow issues. Homes with basements or lower-level facilities are particularly vulnerable.

A properly installed and maintained sewage ejector pump can significantly alleviate these concerns, ensuring a smooth and uninterrupted flow of wastewater from your home to the city’s sewer system.

At Chicago Sewer and Drain Professionals, we’re here to help you navigate the unique challenges posed by Chicago’s infrastructure and weather conditions. We provide a comprehensive suite of services, from installation to repair and maintenance.

Ejector Pump Maintenance

ejector pump maintenance

Once the system has been set up, make sure you keep an eye on your pump regularly. By frequently inspecting and servicing the pump, you can catch any issues early on.

Neglecting maintenance poses several risks. Over time, debris can accumulate in the pump, causing blockages or pump failure. Additionally, without proper maintenance, the pump’s motor, float switch, or other components may deteriorate, leading to malfunctions.

On the other hand, being on top of your maintenance can be incredibly beneficial. For one, you will extend the lifespan of your pump, saving you money in the long run. You’ll also decrease your risk of overflows and clogs, ensuring a sanitary and damage-free home.

Here are ways you can inspect and maintain your ejector pump:

  1. Regularly check the pump and sump basin for any signs of damage or wear.
  2. Clean the pump and remove any debris or sediment from the sump basin.
  3. Test the float switch to ensure it is functioning correctly.

Most importantly, consider scheduling professional maintenance annually to ensure comprehensive servicing and expert assessment.


Having a deep understanding of your sewage ejector pump, including its function and maintenance, is crucial for a comfortable and safe home.

With our fast, affordable, and reliable services, you can ensure your plumbing system, and particularly your sewage ejector pump, works efficiently for years to come. And remember, in case of emergency, we’re just a phone call away, ready to serve you round the clock.

Don’t wait for an emergency! Contact Chicago Sewer and Drain Professionals today for fast, affordable, and reliable plumbing services. Call us at (844) 473-9377 or request service online.

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Thomas Parra

Thomas Parra is the owner of Chicago Sewer and Drain Pros, a trusted plumbing company serving the Chicago area. With years of experience in the industry, Thomas and his team have established a reputation for providing reliable, efficient, and affordable plumbing solutions to both residential and commercial clients. His commitment to customer satisfaction and his expertise in all aspects of plumbing have made Chicago Sewer and Drain Pros a go-to choice for those seeking top-quality plumbing services.