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Sump Pump

Sump pumps are an integral part of a home's drainage system. They are designed to pull water in and away from the home during periods of flooding to keep the house's structure and belongings safe from water damage.

Sump pumps are located in the home's basement in a pit that rests below the lowest part of the floor. A network of channels that surrounds the home's foundation directs excess water away from the home and into the sump pump. The pump is activated when a float located in the appliance is lifted to a particular level by rising water. Once the pump is automatically turned on, the collected water is pushed into a dry well, detention pond or storm drain.

Sump pumps are powered by plugging the appliance into an electrical outlet or by directly wiring it into the home's electrical system. It is wise to purchase a pump with a battery back-up system in case of a power outage.

Many homeowners give little thought to their home's sump pump until the threat of flooding is at hand. Regularly testing the pump is a good idea and can be performed by pouring a standard bucketful of water into the pit in the floor. Correctly working systems should turn on, empty the water and shut off after the pit is emptied. While the appliance is working, it should be checked to make sure the float and valves are working properly.

Sump pumps should be inspected and maintained on a regular schedule. The best time to make an appointment for a check is before the snow melts-off and subsequent rains in the spring. Areas that are more prone to flooding such as regions existing among a high water table or close to large rivers may require more frequent inspections. Pumps that are activated more frequently are more likely to wear out faster than those located in relatively dry areas.

Homeowners can help keep their sump pump working at optimal levels by performing regular cleaning of the sump pit. Debris should be removed from the pit and the lines should be inspected for any blockages.

Many homeowners in flood-prone regions have an extra sump pump on hand for quick installation if necessary. Rite-a-way can help families avoid the destruction caused during flooding by helping homeowners find the best back-up method whether it be a battery installation or an extra standby appliance.