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Commercial Services: Sump Pumps

Sump pumps are devices that take away water from crawlspaces and basements. Because of this, they can resolve most flooding and leaking situations in these areas of a building.

What’s A Sump Pump?

A sump pump is placed in the bottom of a sump pit, which is dug into what’s usually the lowest point in the crawlspace or the basement. Ground water around the foundation of the building is channeled through a drain system that's built around the outside of the foundation’s base. Water flows through the drainpipes and into the sump pit. The sump pump is provided with a float switch very much like a toilet tank's. This switch turns on the pump, which then pumps the water into a nearby storm drain, detention pond or dry well. The float switch also makes sure that the pump is turned on only when the water rises to a certain level. Most new homes now have sump pumps, and older homes can have sump pumps installed to stave off basement or crawlspace flooding.

Nowadays, sump pumps can also be plugged in or wired into a building’s electrical system. A lot of sump pumps also have battery backups that let them work even when the electricity has been cut off, which is a risk during severe thunderstorms. This makes sure that water can still be removed from the basement.

Test Regularly

A sump pump needs to be tested regularly to make sure that it’s ready for the next storm. The way to test a sump pump is to pour a bucket of water into the pit. When the water reaches a certain level, the pump should come on, get rid of the water then turn itself off. The sump pump’s check valve and float should be able to move easily.

Cleaning and Maintenance

As with all appliances, the sump pump works best when it’s well-maintained. It should be cleaned and inspected every year. If it needs to work frequently because the water table is high or because the climate is wet, it may need troubleshooting and maintenance more than this. The pump’s moving parts will inevitably wear out and need replacement, though there’s no hard and fast rule on how often a sump pump needs to be replaced. This depends on how often it has to work.

The sump pit also needs to be cleared of any dirt and debris to make sure that the pump works efficiently and has a long life. The discharge line opening must be clear so that the water can be freely pumped through it and away from the crawlspace or basement.

Battery Backup

A home that's subject to frequent power outages or power outages that last a long time can benefit from a battery backup system or backup powered by the home’s own water pressure. A Rite-a-way plumber can give a customer several options when it comes to backup.