Some homeowners never have to worry about their homes flooding thanks to rainwater and high water tables. But in our area, flooding is all too common. We need the right equipment to pump water out of our basements fast, and that’s something you’ll only get from a quality sump pump (or two!).
Here, you’ll find some expert advice for homeowners. We detail the things we think any sump pump owner should know, and some of these may come as a surprise. For more information, get in touch with our friendly team, or call us for sump pump service in Ketchum, ID.
#1: Not All Designs Are the Same
You may think that nearly any sump pump will serve your needs. But the fact of the matter is that some models are not built as well as others. As you may know, there are two subcategories of sump pumps.
- Pedestal Pump – Perches above the sump pit, with a hose leading in.
- Submersible Pump – A waterproof case sits in the pit, pumping water out from within.
Each pump has its advantages and disadvantages. We often recommend a submersible pump, though, for the benefit of being able to cover the pit to keep the pump out of hearing range.
Then, there are other factors to consider.
- Screen – There are sump pumps with a no-screen intake designed to process solids and avoid clogging the screen. Look into this option with new sump pump installation.
- Material – You want a sturdy sump pump, so choose one made of cast iron rather than plastic.
- Switch – The switch that signals the equipment to turn on may be activated digitally, something we recommend against due to reliability. A manual float switch is preferable.
#2: You Should Always Have a Backup
A battery backup can ensure that water can drain from your basement even if the power should fail. Often, we recommend having two or three sump pumps right next to each other. These may actually be sold in a combination pack; just make sure there is a battery backup included.
#3: You Cannot Afford to Ignore Maintenance
Regular maintenance of your sump pump helps you to avoid a catastrophe in the middle of spring. We recommend inspecting your sump pump as often as possible: a quick test once a month and a full inspection once a quarter. Spending 20 minutes on your sump pump is worth avoiding a flood!
- Check the drainpipe leading out of the home for excessive buildup, which may require cleaning.
- Check the electrical components of the pump for any signs of wire damage, etc.
- Look for mechanical failures such as a stuck float or check valve.
- Test the pump by pouring a bucket of water into the pit and ensuring water moves out quickly enough.
- Call a plumber if you notice any signs of a problem.
#4: Your Sump Pump Will Stop Working
Someday, no matter how much maintenance you put into your sump pump, it will fail. Sump pumps have a lifespan of about 10 years, so we recommend replacing yours well before this date. That way, you can ensure that you have a new pump in good working order (just make sure it’s installed by a professional).