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Float Switch for Bilge Pump: Affordable Peace of Mind

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Why you need a Float Switch for Bilge Pump


So you’ve picked out your bilge pump for your boat and you’re ready to get to work installing it.

Unless you plan on using the pump manually or you’ve picked out an all-in-one automatic bilge pump that has a float switch integrated in the unit, then you’re probably in need of a float switch for the bilge pump.

A float switch is a simple, yet brilliant device, that is used to detect the level of liquid in a confined space.

It consists of a buoyant float attached to a lever that rises and falls with the changing level of liquid present in the area where the switch is placed.

In the context of boats, this is obviously a critical factor as water present within bilges can present a serious issue for boats and boaters.

A smooth and worry-free boating experience is every boater’s intention, however, the unpredictable nature of water and the ocean can present challenges to boaters that demand the need for an automatic sensor to detect excess water build-up onboard any watercraft.

The float switch plays a pivotal role in automating any bilge pump’s operation by providing a clever and affordable solution to the constant need to check for water in bilges.

When a float switch is installed correctly, as water rises in a boat’s bilge, it lifts the float thereby turning on the bilge pump to flow excess water out of the boat.

As the pump does its job, the water level decreases and the float switch returns to a lower level, stopping the pump and avoiding any burnout or overuse.

The extra layer of protection and peace of mind that a float switch provides boaters is unparalleled in the boating world.

They allow boaters to leave boats unattended and obviously are critical to any emergency situation onboard.

In the following list, we have outlined a number of reliable float switches for bilge pumps that are available for boaters easily online.

Join us as we take a stroll through some of the best float switches for bilge pumps available today.

We hope that our research will help you be better prepared when choosing the best float switch for your bilge pump to help protect your treasured vessel!


Best Overall Floatswitch

Rule “Rule-A-Matic” Float Switch for Bilge Pump

The first product up on our list of best float switch for bilge pump is one that many seasoned boaters will probably recognize.

The Rule “Rule-A-Matic” float switch has been the choice float switch by many boaters for many years.

This external float switch provides stellar compatibility with most non-automatic bilge pumps and is a necessary add-on for boaters looking for water detection with a non-automatic pump.

This float switch features a mercury-free snap switch that is tested to love one million cycles, marine grade “blocked” wiring, and completely sealed metal capsules for flawless operation. 

A top pick for boaters looking for a reliable and trustworthy float switch to create lasting peace of mind for their vessels. 

An image of the Rule Rule-a-matic FLoat switch for use with bilge pumps available on

Best Impact Resistant Float Switch

Rule 40A “Rule-A-Matic” Plus Bilge Pump Float Switch

Next up on our list of quality float switches for boaters is another great option from Rule.

The Rule 40A Rule-A-Matic Plus is a little different float switch for boaters looking for something that provides protection for the switch in the bilge.

This float switch provides a sleek and rugged design with a fully integrated impact-resistant cover to protect the switch.

Designed for pumps drawing 20 amps, this pump will turn on when the water level in your bilge reaches 2″ and cuts off when water levels fall to 3/4″.

Featuring a built-in test feature, 14 gauge highly abrasive resistant marine grade wire, and the integrated cover, this float switch helps boaters looking for something a little more durable in their water intrusion systems.

A great option for boaters who need something a little more than the traditional exposed float switch.

An image of the Rule rule a matic plus float switch available on

Best Durability Float Switch

MAXZONE Automatic Boat Bilge Pump Float Switch

The next product on our list brings us back to the more normally recognized float switch design.

The MAXZONE Automatic Boat Bilge Pump Float Switch is another great option for boaters looking for a quality float switch t help with automatic water detection for their bilge.

This long-life float switch has been tested with switching frequencies up to 10 million times, making it one of the more durable switches on our list.

Designed for the toughest marine applications, this float switch is ignition-protected, mercury-free, and made from solid ABS material for high strength in marine applications.

The universal design works with all 12v, 24v, and 32v bilge pumps systems.

Maxflow Automatic Bilge Pump Float Switch available on

Best Overall Heavy Duty Float Switch

Seaflo SFBS-30-01 Heavy-Duty Float Switch

Looking for a float switch for a little bit heavier duty capacity?

The Seaflo Heavy Duty Float Switch may be the best option available for your needs.

Constructed from high-quality, durable ABS material with a newly designed sealing capability for greater durability and longevity, this float switch is built to last.

The switch is activated when water levels reach 1.77″ and turns pumps off when water falls to 0.79″.

Featuring a four-year warranty, the switch is made from mercury-free electric reed for consistent activation over the long term.

A powerful little float switch for boaters who demand more.

An image of the Seaflo Heavy duty float switch available on

Rule SuperSwitch Float Switch

The next float switch is another option from the trusted marine pump brand Rule.

The Rule SuperSwitch is the heavier-duty version of the “Rule-a-Matic” switch that we featured previously.

Designed for the toughest marine applications, this pump includes marine-grade 14 gauge blocked wire, a larger float for increased buoyancy, and a removable base that makes cleaning and maintenance a breeze.

This mercury-free snap switch is tested to over one million cycles and is designed for bilge pumps drawing up to 14 amps at 12-volt DC.

Another stellar option for boaters from Rule.

An image of the Rule SuperSwitch float switch available on

creatorele Automatic Boat Bilge Float Switch

Up next on our list is another great traditional float switch option for boaters.

The creatorele float switch provides similar functionality as some of the other float switches on our list.

Made from high-quality ABS material, this switch turns pumps on when water levels reach 2″ and stops pumps at 3/4″ water level.

Featuring a long-life switching frequency of up to 10 million times, this switch is built with ultrasonic welding for a reliable and secure seal of internal parts.

With a removable base and marine-grade wiring, this pump is designed for use with 12v, 24v and 32v pumps.

An image of the creatorele automatic float switch available on

Best Overall Automatic Pump with Floatswitch Included

MAXZONE Automatic Submersible Boat Bilge Water Pump 12v 1100gph Auto with Float Switch

Looking to simplify your bilge pump and get rid of the external float switch?

The last item on our list of popular float switches for bilge pumps is the MAXZONE automatic submersible boat bilge pump with an integrated float switch.

This powerful little pump comes in two different sizes, one providing a pump capacity of 750 gallons per hour and the other providing an 1100 gallons per hour pump capacity.

This 12-volt setup is a great little system for boaters because it is built with an internal float switch that tells the pump when to turn on to start pumping water.

Equipped with an electronically controlled reed sensor system this pump provides fully automatic operation for boaters.

Featuring an easy-to-clean snap lock strainer base for quick and easy maintenance, and 39 inch long electrical leads, this is a great option for any boater in the market for pumps of this capacity.

Overall a great little powerful unit for boaters that are looking to integrate an automated pump and float switch in one unit for easy installation, operation and peace of mind on the water. 

An image of the MAXZONE Automatic Bilge Pump with integrated float switch available on

Final Thoughts on Float Switch for Bilge Pump

As we come to the end of our article about options for an effective float switch for bilge pumps we hope that we’ve covered some great options to help your boating life.

Investing in a float switch for your bilge pump is much more than just another accessory for your boat.

In real terms, you are investing in peace of mind as a boater that your boat will be protected and stay high and dry even when you can’t be there to check on it.

By installing this small, but critical machine, you can rest assured that your boat is pumping water out of the bilge no matter what the conditions look like outside.

No matter if you are a new boater or someone who has owned boats all your life, the reliability that is provided by a float switch makes it one of the most important tools on your boat.

Best of all, the affordable nature of an external float switch for bilge pumps makes this little tool must-have boat accessories for boaters of all experience and budget levels.

A float switch, though often overlooked, provides a myriad of functions for boaters outside of actually triggering your bilge pumps.

For very little money, your float switch protects your boat, and most importantly frees you up as a boater from having to worry about the potential that your bilge is full of water.

At the end of the day, the float switch is pretty much a must-have device onboard any vessel.

So before you get out on the water to have fun, be sure that you are protecting your boat and ensuring its longevity with this simple, but powerful tool!

Happy boating!



Did you like this article? Did it help your search to find the perfect type of boat? Leave us a comment below and join the conversation!

Or have a look at some of our other marine guides including Gifts for Boat Owners, or informative posts like our Boat Grill Review, Anchor Chain Solutions, choosing the Best Fishing Hats, Selecting the Best Marine Stereo, or our guide to Haulover Inlet!

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