depth or distance monitoring?

My septic filled up today and overflowed into my basement. Luckily I caught it early and only about 3 gallons got on the floor in the utility room. However, there’s no monitoring in my tank. I’d like to monitor the depth of the water in the tank, or the distance from the top. I know there are some ultrasonic distance sensors out there, do any work with Vera?

Any suggestions?

Good call. Personally I would not look into elaborate things like ultrasonic sensors. I’d just set up a few water sensors at different heights to let you know where things stand. Liberal use of silicone, direct burial wires and annual inspections should be enough.

Good luck wit the annual inspections. :wink:

Septic is a pretty hash environment and all of the “monitoring” problems have been solved. I definitely would not try putting sensitive electronics like a ultrasonic sensor in there for years at a time. The standard septic tank uses float switches such as this Parts 2O FP18-15BD-P2 Sump Pump Float Switch. Usually there is one float to operate the lift pump and a second float to trigger an alarm, consisting of a buzzer and a light, should the pump fail and the tank level rise.

If your septic system doesn’t already have such an alarm, then you should see about making it so. If you wish to further Z-Wave enable the alarm you could connect a a relay to it to close contacts for a Schlage RS100HC Door and Window Sensor. Alternatively, you could add a third float and connect it directly to the Schlage RS100HC Door and Window Sensor without an AC electrical connection.

You can use something like the following:

Attach the wires to one of the door/window switches that has external connectors.

What about this?

It’s $99. Designed for outdoor use in tank or bin applications. It also communicates over RS232. I can just mount it in the manhole cover on the tank. It won’t be hard to write a plugin for this at all.


That would work nice as an Arduino sensor. It seems to be able to handle the nasty environment.

[quote=“RichardTSchaefer, post:6, topic:180488”]@signal15

That would work nice as an Arduino sensor. It seems to be able to handle the nasty environment.[/quote]

I was thinking of just connecting it to my Wiznet 4-port serial->IP box, and the coding a Vera plugin that read the distance. No Arduino involved. The plugin would be very similar to the plugin for the Active RFID stuff, with the exception of IP support. I could put in a variable for offset, that could indicate how many inches/cm’s it was from full.