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I'm installing a 1/3 hp 5.6 amp 115 v. Liberty sump pump w/ float switch in a basin in my very cramped dirt-floor crawlspace, to remove seasonal high water-table flooding. I pulled 12 ga. Romex from the panel about 75' to a single-gang receptacle box in my laundry room wall. I then spliced and pulled a short length to another single gang box at the c.s. ceiling and installed a duplex receptacle to plug the pump into.

Circuit is dedicated, and will operate off a 15 amp GFCI breaker. Acknowledged that the manual calls for the pump to be plugged into a receptacle 4' above the finished floor above, which is problematic for a number of reasons- tile floor; no room to install another receptacle next to the stackable washer/ dryer above the pump, if it needs servicing, would need to pull the power cord, etc. I feel confident that were a 100-year flood to occur that flooded the full height of the c.s., the breaker would trip, and that would be that until water subsided. I'm not an electrician, just an ignorant homeowner, and could be wrong.

I have a couple of other questions:

  1. I would like an indicator (preferably green and red neon or led lights) mounted in the laundry room box that will do 2 things: tell me when the circuit is energized, so I know the breaker hasn't tripped, and also to tell me when the pump is drawing current, so I know when / how often it's operating. Is this possible with the current wiring setup? I could install another receptacle there for an indicator and wattage meter, but would prefer to tell at a glance what's happening.

  2. I got a 20 amp GFCI breaker before I settled on the current pump, which now specifies a 15 amp breaker. From what I'm reading, I should probably go ahead with plans to install a 15 amp instead of 20 amp, correct? Is there a risk of fire by using the 20? Thanks.

  • Can you replace the laundry room box with a bigger box? – ThreePhaseEel Aug 30 '17 at 4:28
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With the listing on the pump for 15 amp circuit this should be your max.

There are several ways to monitor if there is power at the outlet. The easiest way would be to install a neon or led indicator light; very low current draw on both with long life spans. There are modules you can put on the hot wire and they activate a switch when the motor is running that could turn on a second neon or led indicator lamp. I have similar setups on some motor controls so I can see at a glance if the breaker is on and if the motor is running. Both could be added to a single gang box attached to your existing outlet box.

The quick Google search I found cr2550 remote current indicator. Pull the black wire through the center of the core and when your pump is running the led will light. Its all wired for 11.85$ max continuous load 20 amps. (I use accuamp but they cost about 75$ and can handle up to 175 amps with adjustable turn on point). a simple ideal indicator part # 777121 attached to the connections of the outlet black & white will show when there is power (120v) indicator. If the LED is not lit you know the pump is not running either not enough water or pump has failed if the other indicator is on.

Hope this helps.

  • That's great to hear, Ed. Would it be possible for you to attach a sketch, photo, or describe what modules I'd need to do what you have set up? I inquired at our electrical supply house, which could sell me the components, but they said to ask an electrician how to wire it. ;) – Jaytee Aug 29 '17 at 18:58
  • Many thanks! I'll look for them or something comparable. – Jaytee Aug 29 '17 at 21:12

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