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How to Determine If You Should Replace Your Sump Pump

If you own a home, and frequently have to deal with your basement flooding due to melted snow or a severe storm, then you may need to focus on your sump pump.

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Water accumulation in your basement is something that you should try and avoid whenever possible. 

A sump pump is integral to the removal of water in the basement. It is a part of your basement plumbing equipment, and it may need to be replaced in due time. Here, we will help you determine if you should replace your sump pump or not.

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What is a sump pump?

Sump pumps are very useful waterproofing solutions that can help protect your basement and home from extensive water damage. They are designed to drain water from a basin or sump pit, which is usually situated in the basement.

Most homes with a subpar natural drainage system will be fitted with a sump pump for additional protection.

Types of Sump Pumps

Pedestal pumps consist of a state-of-the-art motor that is set on a pedestal. A hose is included that will be led down into the pit. As for the pump, it is designed to pump water up the outlet of the hose. 

They are recommended for homes that have a lowered risk of flooding. They are also not immersed in water, which makes it easy to service them.

Sergiy Marynchuk, CC BY-SA 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Submersible pumps are the most commonly used sump pump type. The motor is also situated in the same unit as the pump. It is located inside the pit or basin. If you live in an area that is prone to flooding, then submersible pumps are strongly recommended.

Submersible pump motors are far more powerful than pedestal-type motors, so they will protect your home in the event of a flood.

Installation Process

Sump pumps are very useful in areas that are prone to flooding, as they help drain water very rapidly. However, during the installation process, many factors need to be taken into consideration, including pit size, sound occurrence, and material specifications.

You will also need to protect your belongings. If you try and install a sump pump on your own, then you may be putting your life at risk. For instance, installing a sump pump may require that you form a hole in the foundation of the pit.

To do so, you will need special tools and equipment, as well as years of expertise. Any errors that transpire may cause injuries to you and others. Property damage may also ensue. Handling the sump pump itself carries its own set of unique risks. 

If the damage that occurs due to the mishandling is extensive, then you may need to replace the entire sump pump, which will double your expenses.

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The Signs That Your Sump Pump Needs to Be Replaced

As with most things in life, there will come a time when your sump pump will stop working as intended. If you have installed a sump pump and notice that your basement has become flooded, that means it is not working properly.

Below is a list of issues to look for in order to determine if your sump pump needs to be replaced. No one wants to be faced with emergency plumbing, especially in the middle of the night.

  • Sump pumps should not make a lot of noise, even when they are working. If you are hearing weird sounds that sound like a car engine running, then a failed bearing may be the culprit.
  • An issue with the impeller may cause a rattling or grinding sound. Your sump pump should also not vibrate excessively or shake violently while operational. 
  • Sometimes, rocks and compacted mud can accumulate inside a sump pump, which may cause your impeller blades to snap or bend.
  • Constant or infrequent running are also signs that something is amiss. Constant running may be due to a problem with the on/off switch. Your sump pump should also not stay off for a prolonged period of time because it will lose some of its shelf life.
Sergiy Marynchuk, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons
  • You should test your sump pump at least once a year to ensure that it is still working. Rust may also cause your motor to fail, which may require a motor replacement. 
  • You should check your power source to ensure that it is still working, as there may not actually be anything wrong with the motor itself.
  • Your sump pump will also be at increased risk of clogging if it does not have a lid, or has one that is ill-fitted.

Protect Your Pump

Sump pumps will help prevent your basement from being flooded. They are easy to use and maintain, but should be replaced at least once every 10 years, and that’s assuming they don’t develop any of the issues that we have already discussed.

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