How Do Sump Pumps Work, and Which Type Do I Need?

If your basement floods every time it rains, that’s a sure sign you need a sump pump. The one-time installation cost is well worth it once you realize you’ll never have to worry about flooding again. From horsepower requirements to battery-operated backups, here’s everything you need to know before a Columbus, IN plumber installs a sump pump in your home.

How it works

Sump pumps are designed to redirect flood waters outside your home. They sit in a basin that lies below the basement floor and collects excessive rainfall. Once the basin reaches a certain water level, the pump automatically switches on and sends water through a discharge line. The line extends far away from your house’s foundation and releases water back into a pond, creek or French drain.

Different models

The cheapest and most common model is the submersible sump pump. The pump and motor are housed together inside the basin, which means it’ll be a lot quieter and save space in your basement. The only downside is that constant exposure to a damp environment will shorten the motor’s lifespan. Alternatively, you can install a pedestal sump pump. The motor sits above the basement floor so it lasts longer, but it will also be louder and take up space.

Homeowners who live in a flood-prone area of Columbus, IN should look into purchasing a sump pump that contains a battery-operated backup. Batteries serve as an emergency power supply in case the electricity goes out during a storm. There’s no point in having a sump pump if it shuts off every time you get a heavy amount of rainfall!

The type of sump pump you purchase will depend on multiple factors. Look for one with extra horsepower if your basement is prone to flooding or built below the water table. You might also need an extension for the discharge line in order to reach the designated drainage point. If you have any questions, reach out to your local plumber in Columbus, IN.

When to call the pros

A little bit of noise from your sump pump is normal. But if you hear loud screeching from the basement, something’s not right. Sump pumps that constantly make noise were either installed the wrong way or are reaching the end of the motor’s lifespan. Sometimes the pump will make alarming noises if the impeller is clogged with debris.

You should also contact a plumber if the sump pump is running all the time. Pumps that overwork their motor lead to premature failure. This problem usually occurs when the sump pump’s horsepower is either too large or too small for the flood levels of your home. In other cases, the issue could be as simple as a jammed float switch.

Installing a sump pump is no small task. Do-it-yourselfers looking to save a few bucks will likely end up forking over thousands more when their handiwork leads to a flooded basement. Skip the hassle and let the professionals at Barr Plumbing Service, Inc. do all the work for you. Read more about how we fix sump pumps so you know who to call when it’s time for a replacement.

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