Who Can Benefit From a Sump Pump?
Located in a hole in the basement floor (the sump), sump pumps are responsible for pumping excess water from beneath the house out and away from the foundation. This prevents the basement from flooding and causing expensive water damage. The peace of mind a sump pump provides is well worth the initial cost.
In this article, homeowners will learn about the types of sump pumps, how to tell if theirs need one, and how to choose the best sump pump for their home.
Signs a Home Needs a Sump pump
Where the home is built and how it is built dictates whether it will need a sump pump. Houses with a basement mostly or completely underground often need a sump pump, especially if they are built-in lower elevations. Areas that receive a lot of precipitation (rain or snow) usually require sump pumps.
Use this checklist to decide if a sump pump is needed:
- Does the house have a basement?
- Has the basement flooded before?
- Is there a sump already in place (a hole where water collects)?
- Does the area get a lot of rain or snow?
- Is the house built at the bottom of a hill or in a valley?
- Is the basement finished? Are there valuable items there in need of protection?
- Is the current sump pump six years old or older?
For homeowners that answered yes to most of these questions, they definitely need a sump pump. A licensed plumber can help them choose and install one that will work best for their needs.
Types of Sump Pumps
There are two main types of sump pumps available on the market today. Both require electricity to operate, but if power outages are common where they live, they might consider looking for a battery-powered backup pump, as well.
- Pedestal Sump Pump: Once the industry standard, pedestal sump pumps have the motor situated above the sump. An external float measures the water level and dictates when the pump should turn on. Pedestal models are generally cheaper but do not last as long, as the motor is susceptible to overheating. They are also louder than submersible pumps.
- Submersible Sump Pump: Now the more popular choice, submersible sump pumps are totally submerged in water, which offers cooling benefits for the motor. Quieter than pedestal pumps, they can be more difficult to repair and maintain. Can be more powerful and more expensive.
- Battery Backup Sump Pump: A smaller version of a submersible sump pump, these models run on battery power and should be used in combination with an electric sump pump. They turn on and prevent flooding if the power goes out. But they are not very powerful and have a short battery life, making them an option for emergency use only.
How To Choose a Sump Pump
Whether a homeowner chooses a pedestal pump or a submersible pump is a matter of preference. Submersible pumps are stronger and longer-lasting, making them the more popular choice for residential use.
Here are three factors to consider when shopping for a sump pump:
- Cost: Pedestal sump pumps are typically cheaper, but may need to be replaced more often. They are a good choice for areas with infrequent, light flooding. If the area floods often, homeowners would be better off investing in a higher-quality pump.
- Quality: Cheaper sump pumps are made with cheaper parts, and usually break down faster. Sump pump motors may be housed in thermoplastic, cast iron, or stainless steel. Metal pumps are more expensive but are resistant to corrosion and damage.
- Power: The strength of a sump pump is measured in horsepower. Sump pump motors are available as small as 1/6 HP and as large as 2 HP. The higher the HP, the more expensive the pump. Fortunately, 1/3 HP or 1/2 HP is adequate for most homes; homeowners in very wet areas often choose 3/4 HP or even 1 HP.
An experienced plumber can help determine which sump pump will work best, and will be able to provide additional installation and maintenance tips.
Sump Pump Help From Apple Valley Plumbing, LLC
Established in 2013, Apple Valley Plumbing, LLC is happy to help with sump pump installation or repair. With upfront pricing, fully-stocked trucks, clean, courteous service, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee, Apple Valley Plumbing, LLC is Apple Valley, MN’s first choice for plumbing assistance.