Need solution for septic system warning lights

I have a septic system that has several warning lights. If the septic should fail one or more will turn on and I must notify the engineer. I would like to design a simple monitor to extend that system.

Since the septic is located a good distance from the house here is what I would like to do: create a small light-sensor that communicates via low-power Bluetooth whether the light is on or off. This monitor would be battery-driven. This device would communicate to an iphone app the status of the light (on or off).

I am able to cover the septic’s light such that sunlight would not be a problem.

The septic light monitor would be small and I could place it next to each warning light. The smartphone app would - on demand - tell me if the light was off or on, or if the battery was getting low.

I am an electronic newbie so the simpler the better, and the only requirement is that a single monitor should be battery-powered, small (perhaps the size of a quarter) and Bluetooth low-energy capable.

Any suggestions appreciated.

Since the septic is located a good distance from the house here is what I would like to do: create a small light-sensor that communicates via low-power Bluetooth whether the light is on or off.

Good distance and low-power Bluetooth are contradictory terms. What's a good distance for you? 5m is OK, 50m definitely won't work. You might have to adapt the requirements of your project. Also if you want something the size of a quarter we're talking about SMD electronics which usually is not newbie stuff. If it may be a little bigger, an Adafruit Feather BLE might work.

Hi, May need RF such as nRF24L01 See THIS Page

Arduino can go to sleep most of the time, so batteries would work..

Sounds like you plan to use a light sensor to read the indicator lights. My thought is that connecting to the power for the lights would be a more reliable method.

Others here are much better than I and could help you make a voltage divider of some sort to get the right signal level to your processor. Or maybe through some sort of optical isolation. What are the voltages and is it AC or DC?

terryking228:
Hi, May need RF such as nRF24L01 See THIS Page

Arduino can go to sleep most of the time, so batteries would work..

+1 for what Terry said. No need for batteries, there should be 120v present for the pump and alarm circuitry.

Light sensors would be prone to false triggering due to ambient light, too awkward in general. I would use optocouplers to bring the alarms into an Arduino and then use the NRF24L01 for comms.

If the distances are more than 30 feet, use the high power board on the outside unit. Make sure the Arduino and associated electronics are not exposed to sewer gases, they are very corrosive (hydrogen sulfide).