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Top Three Sump Pump Mistakes To Avoid | WaterWork Plumbing

Sump Pump Mistakes

Sump Pump Mistakes To Avoid


Your basement will get wet. It’s not a matter of “if”, but “when.” There’s a difference between a basement underwater and a wet basement.

One way of preventing your basement from going underwater is a sump pump. Sump pumps help to remove excess water in basements.


Avoid Sump Pump Mistakes


Your home may or may not require a sump pump. Needing a sump pump depends on a variety of things: your home’s age, where you live, and your area’s water table level. In the midwest, sump pumps are typically standard.

The sump pump is the heart of your plumbing system, extracting excess water out of your home through a discharge valve.

Most sump pumps are placed on a bed of gravel at the bottom of pit with a discharge pipe hooked to the circular ring on the left side of the unit. If installed properly, your sump pump collects all excess water surrounding your house.

If your home justifies having a sump pump, replacing it can be an expensive endeavor. Dodge sump pump mishaps by understanding the key component to its function and up keep:


Sump Pump Mistakes

Rule Of Thumb: Keep Your Home Dry


Keeping your basement dry is essential to the foundation integrity of your home. Water problems can wreak havoc on your basement—and on your wallet. There doesn’t have to be a big flood to cause damage. Smaller, slow leaks and cracks in your house structure can lead to unwanted water in your home.

And a wet basement is no fun.

Basement dampness and flooding is due in part to inclement weather and poor foundation. The other part of the equation is the system that’s controlling your water flow—your sump pump.


Avoid Sump Pump Blunders


1. Installation And Maintenance

Do it right. If you’re not experienced in sump pump installation, don’t do it yourself. Contact a plumbing professional. Proper installation and maintenance is paramount.


“We fix many mistakes. If you’re not a competent installer, we suggest not doing it yourself. We often see homeowners trying to cut corners with a sloppy DIY install. Call a professional if you need to. The cost to do it right is a whole lot less than to have to redo it.” —Rob D., R & D


Buy A Submersible Sump Pump


Purchase a submersible sump pump that can be placed inside the sump basin. Secure an airtight lid over your sump basin.This sealing lid will hold moisture inside the sump basin, preventing dampness. Submersible sump pumps make less noise and are terrific for finished basements that are used as living quarters.

Don’t install your sump pump and forget about it.


  2. Loss Of Power

Sump pumps run on electricity. Fierce storms, gusting win, and lightning often knock out power—the same power that runs your sump pump. How can you avoid this?


Have A Back-Up Plan


If your sump pump is electrical, have a backup source of power. If there’s a strong storm in your area, your home can lose power.

Have a 12-volt deep cycle marine battery pack or a generator on hand to power your sump pump if your electricity goes out. Battery backup pumps cost around $300-$500. An electric charger keeps the backup fully charged.

Use a plastic case or build a wall mount to install this battery. Don’t install this battery on the floor. If your power goes out and your sump overflows, you don’t want your backup battery to get fried from its overflow of water.

Make sure an outlet is near your primary system and is mounted well above floor level. Avoid running extension cords across your basement from a sump pump motor to an outlet.


3. Lack Of Testing

Sump Pump mistakes are common. Be proactive.

Test your sump pump often. Regular maintenance testing will give you ample time for repairs if needed. Don’t neglect testing for trouble.


How Do I Test My Sump Pump?


Slowly pour a five (5) gallon bucket of water in the drum to check for proper function. The pump should turn on immediately. If there’s a problem, shut it off and discharge the water. Repair may be necessary.

At night, inspect for slow leaks by taking a reading on your water meter. Don’t use any water overnight. Take a reading in the morning. If the reading has changed drastically, troubleshoot the leak and seek repair.


Sump Pump Mistakes

What Level Sump Pump Do You Have?


Level 1 Sump Pump: Poor drainage sump pumps run incessantly, even with little to no rain. Here it’s critical to keep your sump pumps well maintained. This sump pump is going off every two days. Testing is not required as often. In the event of system failure, keep a spare pump for quick replacement.

Level 2 Sump Pump: Ideal sump pump system design. This sump pump isn’t always running except in heavy rain. These sump pumps will require occasional testing to ensure proper performance.

Level 3 Sump Pump: Sump pump gold standard. This sump pump rarely turns on. Even in sideways downpours and thunderstorms, this system doesn’t go off. City municipality civil engineering is on your side if you own a system gem like this one. Test each year only.


Bad Discharge Pipe To Blame


All sump pumps have a discharge pipe that turns and angles along its travel path to remove water away from your house. A discharge pipe angle below the ground can break from unruly tree roots or debris. Inspect the end of your discharge pipe outside you home. If there’s an interior clog in your pipe, contact seek assistance right away.

If this unfortunate event happens, you’ll have to combat both your natural water flow, plus your backflow of everything your sump pump already pumped. Your sump pump won’t be able to keep up and your basement can flood.


Other Sump Pump Failures


Clear stuck float valve: Dislodge it by tapping on top of your sump pump pit.

Check for disconnected valves: If someone unplugs your pump and forgets to plug it back in, your unit won’t work. Basements don’t have a lot of plugs. Plug the pump back in!


Professionals Can Provide Sump Pump Tips


It’s advantageous to work with a trusted plumbing team who can inspect and fix sump pump systems.

Avoid sump pump mistakes! Contact your WaterWork Plumbing today: 248-542-8022


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