Septic Aerator Keeps Tripping Breaker – Why? What To Do?

Homeownership brings a sense of pride, stability, and an array of responsibilities. Among these responsibilities is the essential task of maintaining a functional septic system.

An integral component of this system is the septic aerator, a device crucial for the breakdown of waste. However, a common and perplexing issue many homeowners face is the recurrent tripping of the breaker connected to the septic aerator.

Brand new septic aerator machines

This malfunction disrupts the smooth operation of the septic system, poses a potential hazard, and necessitates immediate attention.

Understanding the underpinnings of this issue and navigating through the corrective measures requires a blend of electrical and mechanical insight.

This comprehensive guide aims to demystify the reasons behind the persistent breaker tripping and provide a systematic approach to diagnosing and rectifying this problem.

About Septic Aerators

Septic aerators are devices used in aerobic septic systems to introduce oxygen into the wastewater. This oxygen promotes the growth of aerobic bacteria, which break down the waste more efficiently than anaerobic bacteria.

Septic aerators are typically installed in a separate septic tank chamber, continuously injecting air into the wastewater.

Septic aerators come in several types, including diffused air, jet, and spray systems.

Diffused air systems use tiny air bubbles to mix the wastewater and oxygen, while jet systems use high-pressure jets to combine the two. Spray systems, on the other hand, use a spray nozzle to distribute the air throughout the wastewater.

Check this related post for additional information: Aerator Vs Septic Tank: Pros, Cons, & Differences

Common Reasons for Breaker Tripping

While septic aerators are essential to aerobic septic systems, they can sometimes malfunction and cause problems. One common issue is when the septic aerator keeps tripping the breaker.

It can be frustrating. However, there are several common reasons why this may be happening.

Leakage (Water Leak or Moisture)

The bane of any electrical system is water or moisture, and your septic aerator is no exception. A minor leak can introduce water or moisture into the pump wiring or the motor.

The GFCI breaker, acting as a vigilant guard, senses this intrusion and trips to prevent further damage. Over time, unchecked moisture can cause corrosion, halting the motor pump from working.

Overloaded Circuit

An overloaded circuit is one of the most common reasons for a breaker tripping. This happens when you try to draw too much power from a single course, causing the breaker to shut off power to prevent damage or fire.

In the case of a septic aerator, an overloaded circuit could occur if too many electrical devices or appliances are connected to the same circuit.

Short Circuit

Another possible reason for a breaker tripping is a short circuit. This occurs when a hot wire comes into contact with a neutral or ground wire, causing a surge of electrical current that can trip the breaker.

It could be caused by damaged wiring or a faulty component in the aerator itself.

Ground Fault

A ground fault is another possible reason for a breaker tripping. This occurs when a hot wire comes into contact with a ground wire or the metal casing of an appliance, causing a surge of electrical current that can trip the breaker.

A ground fault could be caused by damaged wiring or a faulty component in the aerator itself.

Damaged Pump Motor

A core component of your septic aerator is the pump motor, whose prime function is introducing air into the wastewater, aiding the aerobic bacteria in breaking down waste.

However, like any mechanical component, it is prone to wear and tear. A damaged motor may struggle to function efficiently, causing it to trip the breaker.

One tell-tale sign of a damaged motor is an unusual humming sound or the absence of sound when turned on.

Indicators of Septic Aerator Issues

If your septic aerator keeps tripping the breaker, it could indicate something is wrong with your system. Here are some signs that your septic aerator is causing the problem:

Signs Possible Causes
Strange noises Motor or impeller problems
Excessive vibrations Misaligned motor or damaged impeller
Insufficient air Motor malfunction or clogged diffuser
Excessive air Damaged diffuser or overworking motor

If you notice any of these signs, it is crucial to take action immediately to prevent further damage to your septic system.

What to Do When Your Septic Aerator Trips the Breaker

Check the Circuit

The first thing you should do is check the circuit. Make sure that the breaker is not tripping due to an overloaded circuit.

If you have other appliances or devices on the same circuit, try unplugging them and see if that solves the problem. If the breaker continues to trip, you may need to replace it.

Inspect the Aerator

If the circuit is not the issue, you should inspect the aerator. Check for any signs of damage or wear and tear.

Look for loose connections or frayed wires. Ensure the aerator is appropriately installed and all the components work correctly. If you notice any issues, you may need to replace the aerator or have it repaired.

Call a Professional

If you cannot troubleshoot the problem independently, it may be time to call a professional. A qualified technician can diagnose the issue and provide the necessary repairs or replacements.

They can also perform routine maintenance to ensure your septic system works properly and avoid future problems.

Preventive Measures to Avoid Breaker Tripping

If you want to prevent your septic aerator from tripping the breaker, there are several preventive measures that you can take.

Here are a few tips to help you keep your septic aerator running smoothly:

Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is crucial to prevent your septic aerator from tripping the breaker. Ensure to schedule a professional inspection at least once a year to ascertain that your septic aerator is functioning correctly.

During the inspection, the professional will scrutinize the motor, wiring, and other vital components to ensure they are in good condition.

Proper Use

Proper use of your septic aerator is essential to prevent breaker tripping. Refrain from flushing non-degradable items like wipes, diapers, and feminine products down the toilet, as they can clog the system.

Similarly, avoid pouring grease, oil, or other chemicals down the drain, as they can impair the septic aerator.

Proper Installation

Correct installation of your septic aerator is crucial to prevent the breaker from tripping. Hiring a professional for the installation ensures it's done correctly.

The professional will guarantee the wiring is accurate and the motor is installed correctly.

Proper Sizing

Choosing a septic aerator of the right size is crucial to prevent breaker tripping. If you have a small home, a sizeable septic aerator is unnecessary and could cause the breaker to trip.

Proper Circuitry

Ensuring the correct circuitry is essential to prevent your septic aerator from tripping the breaker.

The exemplary circuitry will depend on the size of your septic aerator - a larger septic aerator requires a larger circuit breaker. In contrast, a smaller one needs a more miniature circuit breaker.

Final Thoughts

A septic aerator tripping the breaker is a common problem caused by various factors. Diagnosing and fixing the issue promptly is essential to avoid further damage to your septic system or property.

By working with a professional and following proper maintenance and cleaning procedures, you can keep your septic system running smoothly and avoid costly repairs in the future.

Empower yourself with the knowledge to tackle home-related repairs confidently! Read here:

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