Most sewers in St. Louis are anywhere from 4-20 feet below ground. The deeper they are the longer it takes to connect to or repair the sewer ejector pump. Also the more dangerous it is because of debris hauled away during excavation. If you have a home with a 10’ deep basement and a commercial building next door with a 20’ deep basement and the sewer is 12’ deep, the house will be able to naturally use gravity to drain out of the basement into the sewer line. The commercial building will have to have a pit with a sewer ejector pump in the basement or outside the building to pump the waste water up 8’ into the main sewer line.
How They Work
The sewage ejector pump lifts waste from the basement bathroom up to the sewer line where it flows out to the municipal sewer line. Even if your building is on the same level with the sewer line, the geography of the site might prevent sewage from flowing fast enough on it’s own. Sewage ejector pumps are usually in buildings where a basement bathroom is located lower than the height of the sewer line which leaves the home.
Some subdivisions and private developments in St. Louis may have to install sewage pumps at each home and building, and have it run waste water through a private sewer (gravity drain) and eventually to an MSD sewer.
Not much maintenance is required for these pumps other than clearing blockages. Sewage Ejector Pumps are manufactured to last up to 10 years but most last anywhere from 20- 30 years. While at least some ejector pump models can tolerate being run “dry” for some time without damage, manufacturers recommend adjusting the pump float so that the liquid level in the receiving chamber never drops below the body of the pump motor.