4 Things You Should Know About Your Home Sump Pump

Posted April 7, 2010

The Chicago area receives over a foot of rain during an average summer. This can keep your home's sump pump working nearly continuously to keep your basement dry.

As mechanical things go, we don’t often think about the sump pump. It’s down in the basement, out of sight and out of mind. In reality, your sump pump is one of the hardest working pieces of equipment in your house.

A typical submersible sump pump drains water year-round, and when a rainstorm hits, the water pump works extra duty, keeping your basement from flooding. Most suburban Chicago homes have sump pumps to aid in basement drainage. So, here are a couple of things to consider:

  1. Sump pumps are mechanical and will eventually fail.  Average sump pump life is 10 years. The most common reason for failure is the sump pump switch.
  2. If your sump pump fails during a rain storm, hundreds of gallons of water can flood your basement in a matter of minutes. It doesn’t take much water to cause thousands of dollars in damage.
  3. Basement flooding can ruin your furnace, water heater, and other mechanical and electrical devices. According to the Gas Appliance Manufacturers Association, these appliances must be replaced.
  4. Sump pumps should be checked for proper operation a couple of times per year – pour some water into the sump pit until the submersible pump cycles. This is usually an easy process and only takes a couple of minutes.  Don’t wait for a failure during a rainstorm to find out your sump pump doesn’t work.

Again, all sump pumps eventually fail, so you should protect your home with a battery backup sump pump.  If you have a finished basement, a battery backup system is essential.

Battery backup systems range from basic to very elaborate.  My experience has been the basic systems seem to fail when you need them most.  While you don’t need to spend a fortune, you will find that for a few extra dollars, you can get a good quality battery backup sump pump. These systems give you an extra measure of defense. They not only protect your belongings in case of a power failure but automatically kick in should your primary water pump fail.

ABC Plumbing offers a variety of quality sump pump and sump pump backup systems, including ABC Commander dual pump, Zoeller sump pump, Aquanot, Hydromatic sump pump, and the ultimate backup system,  Tramco pump.  These systems provide around-the-clock protection and, in fact, can pump more water per minute than many primary sump pumps. We can help determine which sump pump system is right for your home. 

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