Guide to Saniflo Problems and Solutions

Saniflo troubleshooting

Your Comprehensive Resource for Swift Solutions.

If you have a Saniflo macerator installed in your bathroom or other areas of your home, you might encounter various issues over time. While Saniflo systems are convenient for wastewater disposal when traditional plumbing isn’t feasible, they can face problems. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore common Saniflo problems and provide practical solutions to address them.

While some minor system issues can be resolved with basic saniflo troubleshooting, it’s essential to understand that these systems can be complex. For more significant problems or when in doubt, it’s strongly advisable to seek the expertise of a certified Saniflo technician. Our team at Pumpmaster specialises in diagnosing and resolving Saniflo system issues efficiently and safely and have provided this saniflo troubleshooting guide to help.

WARNING – Saniflo units involve sharp blades and a combination of electricity and water. For your safety, it’s strongly advised not to attempt DIY fixes. It’s advisable to seek the assistance of a Saniflo approved engineer to avoid further complications.

What is a Saniflo?

Saniflo is a brand of macerator pump designed to handle the cutting up and removal of waste when the location is too far from the drainage line or gravity isn’t conducive to efficient drainage. Saniflo systems are commonly used for toilets but can also be utilised in bathrooms, kitchens, and utility areas.

Saniflo Troubleshooting guide

NOTE: Remember to always follow safety precautions, turn off electrical supplies when working on the Saniflo, and seek professional assistance if needed, especially for complex or recurring issues.

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Saniflo Won’t Turn Off

Issue: The Saniflo won’t stop running after flushing.

Possible Causes:

  • Blockage in the Macerator: Debris or foreign objects may obstruct the macerator blades.
  • Blockage in the Pump: Obstructions in the pump impellers can lead to continuous flushing.
  • Blockage in the Waste Outlet Pipe: Foreign objects in the waste outlet pipe may cause waste to return.
  • Faulty Return Valve: A malfunctioning return valve can contribute to continuous flushing.
  • Misfiring Microswitch: A misfiring microswitch can trick the system into continuous flushing.
  • Seal Damage and Waste Entry: Water pressure damage to the rubber seal can result in waste entering the microswitch.


To address the issue of continuous flushing in your Saniflo system, it is advisable to seek professional assistance from certified technicians who specialise in Saniflo systems. Attempting to diagnose or resolve these issues without proper expertise can potentially lead to further complications or damage. Contact us, and our skilled technicians will efficiently diagnose and resolve the problem, ensuring your Saniflo system functions optimally.

Saniflo Won’t Flush

Issue: The Saniflo won’t flush when you activate it, which could be due to several reasons.

Possible Causes:

  • Air Compression Issue: This saniflo problem might be linked to insufficient air compression within the air pipe.
  • Microswitch or Button Defect: A faulty flush button or internal microswitch could be contributing to the issue.
  • Mechanical Obstructions: The system might not flush due to obstructions or jams.
  • Electrical Component Failure: If the capacitor or motor has blown, it can impede the flush operation.


For issues related to a faulty flush in your Saniflo system, it’s recommended to rely on the expertise of certified Saniflo engineers. Attempting to address these Saniflo problems without proper knowledge and tools can exacerbate the situation. Our experienced technicians can:

  1. Air Compression Adjustment: Adjust the air compression system by shortening the air pipe to enhance flush performance.
  2. Button or Microswitch Replacement: If the flush button or microswitch is defective, our technicians can replace these components to restore proper flush functionality.
  3. Obstruction Removal: Clear any mechanical obstructions or jams within the system to ensure a smooth flush.
  4. Electrical Fault or Motor Replacement: If the capacitor or motor has blown, our experts will assess the situation and replace the necessary components. In the case of a blown motor, a new macerator may be required.

Contact us for professional diagnosis and resolution of your Saniflo flush issues to ensure your system operates effectively and reliably.

Saniflo Unit Is Warm to the Touch

Issue: The Saniflo box or housing becomes warm to the touch during operation, indicating an overheating problem.


A small amount of models in he range may feel warm to the touch when blocked. If your Saniflo box feels warm, the root cause is often a jammed motor. Running a Saniflo unit with a jammed motor for an extended period can lead to irreparable damage, necessitating motor replacement. Prior to inspecting the motor, it is crucial to ensure the electric supply is disconnected for safety reasons.


Addressing an overheating Saniflo box requires specialised knowledge and expertise to safeguard your system’s performance and safety. Our certified Saniflo technicians can provide the following solutions:

  1. Motor Inspection: Our technicians will thoroughly inspect the motor to confirm if it is indeed jammed and assess its overall condition.
  2. Motor Replacement: If the motor is found to be irreparably jammed or damaged, our experts will replace it with a suitable replacement motor, ensuring your Saniflo unit functions optimally.
  3. Electrical Safety: We prioritise electrical safety and will ensure that the electric supply is correctly disconnected during any maintenance or repair work.

To prevent further complications and maintain the reliability of your Saniflo system, contact a certified Saniflo engineer promptly if you notice your Saniflo box overheating. Our professional technicians will handle the issue safely and effectively.

Saniflo cycle is interrupted

Issue: The Saniflo starts but stops abruptly during a cycle.


When the thermal cut function activates in your Saniflo unit, it indicates that the motor is overheating due to excessive water flow, often occurring during hot washing machine cycles or while using hot baths. This feature is more common in older Saniflo pumps that may show signs of wear and tear. Water leakage from the Saniflo box’s vent may accompany this issue.


Addressing a Saniflo unit with a thermal cut activation and water leakage requires specialised attention from a Saniflo engineer for safety and efficiency. Here are the recommended steps:

  1. Cooling Down: If the thermal cut activates, the unit usually needs time to cool down. Avoid running extremely hot washes, such as 90ºC cycles, until the system has cooled sufficiently.
  2. Inspect for Wear and Tear: Our qualified technicians will perform a thorough inspection of your older Saniflo pump to identify any signs of wear and tear that may contribute to the issue.
  3. Jam-Clearance: If the saniflo problem persists due to a jammed macerator pump, the thermal cut will continue to activate to prevent motor damage. To resolve this, it is crucial to turn the pump off at the wall and wait for our certified Saniflo engineer to arrive.

To maintain the reliability and safety of your Saniflo system, it is recommended to consult a Saniflo approved engineer when encountering thermal cut activation. We have the expertise to diagnose and rectify these concerns effectively.

Saniflo Backing Up or Overflowing

Issue: The Saniflo is backing up, leading to water or waste overflow in the basin, shower, or toilet.

Possible Causes:

  • Blockage in the Waste Pipe: The primary culprit is often an obstruction in the waste pipe.
  • Incorrect installation: If the waste pipe departs at a 90-degree angle instead of the recommended 45 degrees.

However, this issue can also be caused by problems with a number of the units components.


To address Saniflo backing up or blocking concerns, it is advisable to engage the expertise of a Saniflo engineer for the most effective resolution:

  1. Blockage Removal: In the initial troubleshooting steps, attempt to remove any visible blockages from the macerator or water tank. If this doesn’t resolve the issue, it is likely that the blockage is within the waste pipe.
  2. Professional Intervention: For blockages within the waste pipe or when dealing with electrical or component issues, it is crucial to contact a certified Saniflo engineer. They have the specialised tools and knowledge to safely and effectively remove and clean out the pipes. Additionally, they can ensure that the waste pipes are correctly installed, preventing future blockages. Incorrect pipe installation is a common saniflo problem, so adhering to this angle is essential for proper Saniflo operation.

For the best results and to prevent further complications, rely on the expertise of a qualified Saniflo engineer when facing issues of backing up or blocking in your Saniflo unit.

Saniflo Won’t Activate

Saniflo troubleshooting - saniflo won;t activate

Issue: The Saniflo system doesn’t activate or start when you flush the toilet or use the sink or bath.

Possible Causes:

If your Saniflo unit is not activating as expected, several potential reasons could be at play:

  • Blocked Breather Pipe Pathway: Blockages in the breather pipe pathway, located at the back or side of your Saniflo, can impede proper system activation.
  • Water in the Membrane: The presence of water in the membrane can disrupt the functioning of your Saniflo unit.
  • Damaged or Warped Membrane: A damaged or warped membrane can also contribute to activation issues.
  • Faulty Activation Switch: A malfunctioning switch may fail to trigger the system when needed.


To effectively address the issue of your Saniflo not activating, it is strongly recommended to seek professional assistance:

  1. Professional Inspection: Given the various potential causes for the Saniflo problem, it is essential to have a qualified Saniflo technician inspect the system. They will be able to accurately identify the specific cause of the activation issue.

Important Note: DIY repairs may be suitable for minor issues, but attempting complex repairs without proper knowledge can lead to further damage or safety hazards. We strongly recommend contacting Pumpmaster for professional assistance to ensure the longevity and safety of your Saniflo system.

Saniflo Activates Intermittently

Issue: The Saniflo activates intermittently in short bursts without a clear reason, potentially due to a malfunctioning microswitch or water ingress.


If your Saniflo pump is randomly firing at different times, several potential causes may be responsible:

  • Microswitch Problems: This issue may arise due to problems with the microswitch. It can be caused by a fault in the rubber membrane that activates the switch or waste being lodged between the switch and the floor.
  • Non-Return Valve Issues: If the non-return valve is not functioning correctly, it can lead to random pump activation. Sometimes, it may require cleaning or replacement.
  • Water Ingress: Water can enter the Saniflo system through various sources, such as a dripping tap, overflowing toilet, or connections to a condenser boiler.


To address the problem of random pump activation effectively, consider the following solutions:

  1. Misfiring Microswitch: If waste is causing the microswitch to misfire, you can attempt to resolve the issue manually. Clear the tank by hand, remove any excess waste near the microswitch, and restart the pump.
  2. Damaged Rubber Membrane: The rubber membrane, responsible for triggering the pump, may be damaged or lose its seal. In this case, it is advisable to replace the rubber membrane, the switch and the seals.
  3. Non-Return Valve Maintenance: If the issue is related to the non-return valve, consider cleaning it or replacing it, especially in newer models where this is a feasible task.

Given the complexity of the system and the potential technicalities involved, it is recommended to consult a professional Saniflo technician for accurate diagnosis and appropriate solutions. Attempting repairs without the necessary expertise could result in further complications.

Saniflo Keeps Flushing

Saniflo troubleshooting - saniflo keeps flushing

Issue: Your Saniflo keeps flushing continuously.

Possible Causes:

  • Blockage in Macerator: A blockage within the macerator could be the culprit. To address this, turn off the main power supply to your Saniflo to avoid burning out the motor and seek professional advice.
  • Blockage in Pump: If there’s a blockage in the pump, the motor will need to be removed and inspected. It’s advisable to contact a certified Saniflo engineer for assistance.
  • Blockage in Waste Outlet Pipe: In some cases, a blockage in the waste outlet pipe can cause waste to be flushed and then return. Inspect the return valve inside the Saniflo unit for any foreign objects blocking it. If the return valve itself is faulty, it may require replacement.
  • Faulty Return Valve: A malfunctioning return valve could also lead to constant flushing, necessitating the replacement of this component.
  • Microswitch Misfiring: If the microswitch is misfiring, it can trigger continuous flushing. This occurs when the switch incorrectly perceives the tank as full and forces the system to flush repeatedly.
  • Seal Damage: Over time, water pressure on the seal can damage the rubber membrane, potentially leading to system faults as waste enters the switch. If your pump is under warranty, you may be eligible for a replacement system.


While these issues may have specific solutions outlined above, it’s essential to stress that Saniflo systems involve complex technical components. To avoid further complications or potential hazards, it is strongly recommended to contact a Saniflo approved service engineer to diagnose and rectify the problem. Attempting DIY repairs can be risky and may void warranties or lead to additional damage. Always prioritise safety and professional expertise when dealing with Saniflo system issues.

Saniflo Activates on Its Own

Issue: The Saniflo activates on its own and flushes intermittently throughout the day and night.

Possible Causes:

If your Saniflo pump starts operating intermittently without a clear trigger, several factors could be contributing to this issue:

  • Microswitch Misfiring: The microswitch responsible for detecting the tank’s water level may be misfiring, erroneously perceiving the tank as full and initiating pump operation.
  • Damaged Rubber Membrane: A damaged or compromised rubber membrane, the component that the water presses against to activate the switch, can lead to irregular pump behaviour.
  • Water Ingress: Water might be entering the Saniflo system through various sources, such as a dripping tap, overflowing toilet, or connection to a condenser boiler.


To address this complex issue safely and effectively, it’s crucial to enlist the expertise of a certified Saniflo engineer. They can diagnose the specific cause of the erratic pump behaviour and implement the necessary solutions, which may include:

  1. Clearing Waste Buildup: In the case of a misfiring microswitch due to waste accumulation between the switch and the tank floor, a professional can manually clear the tank and reset the pump.
  2. Replacing Rubber Membrane and Switch: If a damaged rubber membrane is identified as the saniflo problem, a new rubber membrane and switch should be purchased and installed by a certified technician.
  3. Identifying Water Ingress Sources: A qualified engineer can inspect the system for potential water ingress points, address any issues with connections, and ensure the system is properly sealed and protected against unwanted moisture.

Attempting DIY repairs for these issues can be risky and may lead to further complications or void warranties. Always prioritise professional expertise and safety when dealing with Saniflo system irregularities.

Saniflo Noisy or Buzzing

Saniflo Noisy or Saniflo buzzing

Issue: Saniflo Vibrating or buzzing noises are coming from the system.


When your Saniflo system produces unusual noises like buzzing, humming, or starts vibrating during flushing, it typically signifies an object obstructing the macerator blade, preventing proper maceration.


Dealing with a blocked macerator blade can be a tricky task and is best left to professionals to ensure safety and prevent further damage. Here’s what you should do:

  1. Turn Off Power: Before attempting any inspection or repairs, always turn off the power supply to the pump at the mains. Never remove the Saniflo lid while the pump is still active to avoid accidents.
  2. Remove Cover: After ensuring the power is off, carefully remove the Saniflo cover to access the pump’s macerator.
  3. Professional Assistance: For your safety and to maintain the integrity of your Saniflo system, it is strongly recommended to call a registered Saniflo repairs expert. They are equipped with the necessary knowledge and tools to safely remove any obstructions from the macerator blade and ensure it functions correctly.

Attempting to tackle this issue yourself could result in accidents or further damage to your system. Always prioritise your safety and the expertise of a professional technician when dealing with blockages in your Saniflo system.

Saniflo Leaking During Operation

Issue: The Saniflo is leaking, possibly due to waste build-up or component wear.

Possible Causes:

A leaking Saniflo unit can result from various underlying problems:

  • Waste Buildup: Accumulated waste inside the unit can lead to blockages and overflow, causing leaks through the vent.
  • Worn Microswitch or Rubber Membrane: If the microswitch or rubber membrane is worn, the unit may not pump out water quickly enough. Replacing the rubber membrane might resolve this issue, but if not, the entire microswitch may require replacement.
  • Motor Wear: An aging motor might struggle to function efficiently, leading to leaks. In such cases, it’s advisable to consider replacing the entire macerator.
  • Shrunken Rubber Waste Outlet: Excessive use of toilet cleaner can cause the rubber waste outlet to shrink. This can result in water escaping from the air vent.


When you notice your Saniflo leaking, it’s crucial to address the issue promptly. Here are the steps to take:

  1. Professional Assessment: To identify the specific cause of the leak and ensure a safe and effective solution, it’s recommended to call a professional Saniflo technician. They have the expertise and tools to diagnose the saniflo problem accurately and provide appropriate repairs.
  2. Waste Buildup: If the issue is caused by a significant buildup of waste, a professional technician will manually remove the accumulated waste to restore proper functionality.
  3. Worn Microswitch or Rubber Membrane: If the microswitch or rubber membrane is identified as the problem, the technician can replace these components to ensure the unit operates smoothly.
  4. Motor Wear: In cases where the motor is at the end of its life and causing leaks, replacing the entire macerator unit is typically the most effective solution.
  5. Shrunken Rubber Waste Outlet: If excessive toilet cleaner use has caused the rubber waste outlet to shrink, a technician can replace the rubber insert to resolve the issue.

Attempting to fix a leaking Saniflo unit without the necessary expertise can lead to further complications. Therefore, it’s strongly recommended to rely on professional assistance for a proper diagnosis and effective repairs.

Saniflo Foaming Out the Vent

Issue: Foaming occurs at the Saniflo air vent.

Possible Causes:

Saniflo systems can experience foaming due to various factors:

  • Excessive Cleaner Usage: Overuse of cleaner, bleach, or soap mixtures inside the Saniflo system can lead to excessive foaming. Foam can hinder the Saniflo’s pumping action, which can result in cavitation and overheating.
  • Aged Microswitch: If the microswitch is relatively old, it might not activate until the tank is sufficiently full. When it finally triggers, the spinning mechanism can cause wastewater to escape from the air vents.
  • Shrunken Rubber Membrane: Heavy and continuous use of bleach or toilet cleaners can cause the Saniflo’s rubber membrane, to shrink and harden. This can result in prolonged pump operation, sensitivity to vibrations (e.g., walking past the unit), and eventual overheating due to the thermal cut-out activating.


  1. Excessive Cleaner Usage: To address foaming caused by cleaner overuse, you can take the following steps:
    • Dilute the water inside the Saniflo to reduce foam formation.
    • Operate the Saniflo in short bursts repeatedly to help dispel the foam.
    • Limit the amount of cleaner used with your Saniflo system in the future.
  2. Aged Microswitch: If the microswitch is aging and causing issues, try these steps:
    • Replace the rubber membrane protecting the microswitch. Over time, the rubber can become loose, requiring more pressure to activate the switch.
    • If replacing the rubber membrane doesn’t resolve the saniflo problem, consider replacing the entire microswitch.
  3. Shrunken Rubber Membrane: If excessive use of bleach or other cleaners has caused the rubber membrane to shrink and harden, follow these steps:
    • Saniflo Descaler: Saniflo Descaler is specially formulated to clean and descale Saniflo macerator pumps effectively. Use it to thoroughly clean the unit.
    • Consider changing both the Saniflo membrane and the Saniflo microswitch while the machine is dismantled. This ensures a comprehensive solution and prevents the need for repeat disassembly if issues persist after membrane replacement.

It’s important to follow Saniflo’s instructions for cleaner usage and maintenance to prevent these issues from occurring. If saniflo problems persist or if you’re uncertain about the required repairs, seeking assistance from a qualified Saniflo technician is advisable to ensure the proper functioning of your system.

CAUTION: Saniflo systems and involve electrical and plumbing components. Attempting DIY repairs beyond the scope of basic troubleshooting can pose safety risks and void warranties. For your safety, it’s strongly recommended to contact Pumpmaster for qualified Saniflo system service and repair.

Saniflo Tripping the Electrics

Issue: The Saniflo trips electrics, potentially due to water ingress or loose wires. The issue can depend on the age of the unit.

Possible Causes:

If your Saniflo unit is continually tripping your electrical circuit, it can be attributed to several causes:

  • Water Ingress: Water entering the unit can lead to circuit shutdown to prevent damage.
  • Loose Wire: Loose or damaged wiring can also trigger electrical issues.
  • Worn-Out Motor: A worn or faulty motor can cause water to enter the electrics, resulting in circuit tripping and possible thermal cuts.


When faced with the problem of your Saniflo tripping electrics, it’s essential to prioritise safety and take the following steps:

  1. Safety First: Always turn off the mains electricity supply before inspecting the Saniflo pump. Handling electrical components without proper precautions can be dangerous.
  2. Seek Professional Assistance: Dealing with electrical issues, especially in combination with water, requires expertise. It is strongly recommended to contact a business or engineer certified in Saniflo repairs. They will have the necessary knowledge and tools to diagnose and fix the saniflo problem safely.
  3. Motor Seal or Wiring Issues: If the issue is related to a motor seal or loose wiring, leave the repairs to a certified Saniflo engineer. Attempting to address these issues without the proper expertise can lead to safety hazards.
  4. Motor Replacement: In cases where the motor is worn or faulty, it might not be repairable. This would necessitate the purchase of a new macerator unit. A certified Saniflo technician can assess the condition of the motor and recommend the appropriate course of action.
  5. Alternative Circuit Test: As a rare exception, you can test the Saniflo pump on a different circuit using an RCD (Residual Current Device) Adapter for safety. If the pump still doesn’t function correctly, it’s likely time to invest in a new macerator pump.

Remember that working with electrical components and water can pose significant risks. To ensure your safety and the proper functioning of your Saniflo system, always rely on qualified professionals for electrical and plumbing repairs related to your Saniflo unit.

Unpleasant Saniflo Smells

Smelly Saniflo

Issue: Foul odours from the Saniflo system, Saniflo smells.


When an old Saniflo unit starts emitting unpleasant odours, it is often an indicator that the unit requires cleaning. This odour can result from the accumulation of waste and limescale within the system. Using improper cleaning agents like general bleach can potentially damage your Saniflo.


To address the issue of a smelly Saniflo, follow these steps:

  1. Identify the Source of Smell: To confirm if the smell is originating from your Saniflo unit, flush your toilet or fill your basin with water and then unplug it. Smell near the air vent to check if the same smell is present.
  2. Use Saniflo Approved Descalers: Purchase a high-quality Saniflo descaler specifically designed for your Saniflo unit. Avoid using general cleaning chemicals or bleach, as these can harm the pump components.
  3. Follow Descale Instructions: Refer to the product label and instructions of the chosen Saniflo descaler for the proper descaling procedure. If you’ve never descaled your macerator, you may need to repeat this process several times for optimal results.
  4. Regular Descaling: Saniflo Smells often result from the accumulation of limescale and waste in the residual water left in the system. To prevent odours, consider periodic descaling as part of your maintenance routine. Always follow the recommended descaling frequency mentioned in the product instructions.
  5. Additional Cleaning: If the problem persists after descaling the macerator, you can also clean the pipes and waste traps by mixing descaler and pouring it down the plug holes. Refer to your product instructions or manufacturer guidelines for specific details.
  6. Monitor Water Level: Keep in mind that there is usually 2-3 inches of water left in the bottom of a Saniflo unit after each use. This water can accumulate limescale and waste, leading to odours. Descaling helps address this issue.
  7. Testing: To ensure that the saniflo problem is resolved, test the unit by flushing a toilet or filling a basin with water, then pulling the plug and smelling near the air vent. If the smell matches the one in your property, it indicates that the Saniflo descaling has been successful.

If you have an old Saniflo unit that has never been descaled and odours persist, it may require multiple descaling sessions. Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and safety guidelines when performing maintenance on your Saniflo system. If the problem continues, seek the help of a certified Saniflo engineer to keep your unit running fresh.

Saniflo Works on the Toilet but Not Elsewhere

Issue: The Saniflo system functions with the toilet but doesn’t pump waste from the bath or sink.


When your Saniflo system fails to activate properly, it is often due to blocked inlet pipes. Common obstructions in these pipes include hair and soap residue. In Sanipro or Saniplus units, the water inlet valves inside the macerator box may become clogged. Stiff or distorted Saniflo membranes or a faulty Saniflo microswitch can also contribute to activation issues.


To resolve the problem of your Saniflo not activating correctly, follow these steps:

  1. Identify the Issue: Determine if the saniflo problem is caused by blocked inlet pipes, stiff or distorted membranes, a faulty microswitch, or other issues.
  2. Cleaning Blocked Inlet Pipes (Sanipro or Saniplus): If the issue is blocked inlet pipes, locate the water inlet valves inside the macerator box (typically found on Saniplus units). Remove these valves, clean them thoroughly to remove obstructions (such as hair), and then reinstall them. Use a wet and dry vacuum to suck through the pipe where the Saniflo non-return valve is usually located to clear any additional blockages.
  3. Suck the Pipe Through: After cleaning, you should hear air being sucked through the plughole, indicating that the pipes are clear of obstructions.
  4. Check for Membrane or Microswitch Issues: If cleaning the inlet pipes does not resolve the activation problem, inspect the Saniflo membrane for stiffness or distortion. Additionally, check the Saniflo microswitch for faults. These components may need replacement to address activation issues.
  5. Professional Assistance: If you are unsure about any of these steps or if the saniflo problem persists after your attempts to resolve it, consider calling a professional Saniflo engineer to assess and repair the system.

Always refer to your Saniflo instruction manual for specific details on cleaning and maintenance. When performing any maintenance on your Saniflo system, prioritise safety and follow manufacturer guidelines and recommendations.

Saniflo Running but not Pumping

Issue: The Saniflo problem is that the saniflo is running but not pumping anything through the waste pipe


In freezing conditions, typically during winter when temperatures drop below zero degrees, the waste pipes of your Saniflo unit might freeze. This can obstruct the pumping action, causing the unit to run without effectively discharging waste.


  1. Turn Off the Saniflo: To prevent any potential damage, immediately turn off the Saniflo unit.
  2. Manual Removal of Waste: If there’s a risk of waste overflow, manually remove a portion of it to alleviate the load on the system.
  3. Wait for Temperature Rise or Warm Pipes: Either wait for temperatures to rise, typically around midday, or try warming up the pipes using hot towels.
  4. Insulate Exterior Pipes: Ensure that pipes located outside are well insulated to prevent them from freezing in the first place.

After taking these steps, turn the Saniflo unit back on and check if it resumes normal pumping. If issues persist, consider seeking professional assistance, especially if the problem is recurrent or severe.

For more information see our Winter Tips blog post.

How to Avoid Common Saniflo Problems

To prevent common Saniflo problems, consider these preventive measures:

  1. Regular Maintenance: Perform routine maintenance, including servicing, descaling, cleaning, and checking for debris in the pump chamber.
  2. Proper Waste Disposal: Avoid flushing large or non-biodegradable objects down the toilet. Use toilet paper sparingly.
  3. Toilet Cleaners: Use toilet cleaners sparingly to prevent damage to rubber components.
  4. Avoid Harsh Chemicals: Do not use harsh chemicals or bleach, as they can cause foaming and damage rubber parts.
  5. Professional Installation: Ensure your Saniflo system is professionally installed to reduce the risk of improper connections or angles in waste pipes.
  6. Address Leaks Promptly: If you notice any leaks or unusual sounds, address them promptly to prevent further damage.

When to Call a Professional

While you can troubleshoot and resolve some Saniflo issues yourself, it’s essential to recognise when it’s time to call a certified Saniflo engineer:

  • If you’re uncomfortable performing DIY repairs.
  • If the issue persists after attempting basic troubleshooting.
  • If you suspect damage to critical components like the motor or macerator.
  • If the electrics are involved and require inspection or repair.
saniflo repair near me

Certified Saniflo engineers have the expertise and tools necessary to diagnose and resolve complex Saniflo problems.


Saniflo systems are a convenient solution for wastewater disposal in locations where traditional plumbing isn’t feasible. However, they can experience various problems over time. By following the troubleshooting steps outlined in this guide and practicing preventive maintenance, you can keep your Saniflo system running smoothly. Remember that for more complicated issues or if you’re unsure about the diagnosis and repair, it’s always best to consult a approved Saniflo engineer to ensure the proper functioning of your system.

Have more questions? see our FAQ page

1. Saniflo Won’t Turn Off

Issue: Continuous flushing after use. Causes: Blockages, faulty return valve, misfiring microswitch. Solution: Professional assistance required for diagnosis and resolution.

2. Saniflo Won’t Flush

Issue: Failure to flush. Causes: Air compression, microswitch or button defects, mechanical obstructions, electrical component failure. Solution: Rely on certified Saniflo engineers for proper diagnosis and solutions.

3. Saniflo Unit Is Warm to the Touch

Issue: Overheating Saniflo box. Cause: Jammed motor. Solution: Certified Saniflo technicians to inspect and replace the motor if necessary.

4. Saniflo Cycle Is Interrupted

Issue: Abrupt stops during a cycle. Cause: Thermal cut function due to motor overheating. Solution: Wait for cooldown, inspect for wear and tear, and seek professional assistance.

5. Saniflo Is Backing Up or Overflowing

Issue: Backing up or overflow in basin, shower, or toilet. Causes: Blockage in waste pipe, incorrect installation. Solution: Professional intervention for blockage removal and correct installation.

6. Saniflo Won’t Activate

Issue: Failure to activate. Causes: Blocked breather pipe, water in membrane, damaged membrane, faulty activation switch. Solution: Professional inspection for accurate identification and resolution.

7. Saniflo Activates Intermittently

Issue: Random pump activation. Causes: Microswitch problems, non-return valve issues, water ingress. Solution: Professional Saniflo technician for accurate diagnosis and solutions.

8. Saniflo Keeps Flushing

Issue: Continuous flushing. Causes: Blockages, faulty return valve, misfiring microswitch, seal damage. Solution: Contact a Saniflo approved service engineer for diagnosis and resolution.

9. Saniflo Activates on Its Own

Issue: Intermittent pump activation. Causes: Microswitch misfiring, damaged rubber membrane, water ingress. Solution: Certified Saniflo engineer for accurate diagnosis and solutions.

10. Saniflo Noisy or Buzzing

Issue: Vibrating or buzzing noises. Cause: Blocked macerator blade. Solution: Turn off power, seek professional Saniflo repairs expert for safe removal of obstructions.

11. Saniflo Leaking During Operation

Issue: Leakage during operation. Causes: Waste buildup, worn microswitch or rubber membrane, motor wear, shrunken rubber waste outlet. Solution: Professional assessment and repair by certified Saniflo technicians.

12. Saniflo Foaming Out the Vent

Issue: Foaming at the air vent. Causes: Excessive cleaner usage, aged microswitch, shrunken rubber membrane. Solution: Follow recommended descaling procedures and use Saniflo-approved descalers.

13. Saniflo Tripping the Electrics

Issue: Saniflo Tripping electrics. Causes: Water ingress, loose wire, worn-out motor. Solution: Prioritise safety, seek professional assistance for inspection and repairs.

14. Saniflo smelly – Emitting Unpleasant Smells

Issue: Foul odours. Cause: Limescale and waste buildup. Solution: Use Saniflo-approved descalers, follow descale instructions, and perform regular maintenance.

15. Saniflo Works on the Toilet but Not Elsewhere

Issue: Functions with toilet but not bath or sink. Causes: Blocked inlet pipes, membrane or microswitch issues. Solution: Identify the issue, clean blocked pipes, and seek professional assistance if needed.

How to Avoid Common Saniflo Problems

Preventive Measures: Regular maintenance, proper waste disposal, limited cleaner usage, avoiding harsh chemicals, professional installation, prompt leak addressing.

When to Call a Professional

Call a Certified Saniflo Engineer:

  • If uncomfortable with DIY repairs.
  • If issues persist after basic troubleshooting.
  • If critical components are damaged.
  • If electrics are involved.