facebook tracking pixel
bl-icon May 23, 2024
bl-icon By: Shaun Miller
Shawn showing the inside of a sump pump

The Essential Guide to Sump Pump Maintenance: How to Extend the Life of Your Pump

A sump pump is a critical component in many homes, especially those in flood-prone areas. It’s the heart of a basement waterproofing system, pumping out water that accumulates in the sump basin to prevent water damage and flooding. Regular maintenance is not just recommended; it’s essential to ensure your sump pump operates efficiently and lasts as long as possible. Here’s your essential guide to sump pump maintenance, packed with expert tips and insights.

Understand Your Sump Pump Setup

The first step in maintaining your sump pump is to understand what type you have and how it functions. There are two main types of sump pumps:

Submersible Pumps: These sit in the water in your sump pit and are specially sealed to prevent electrical short circuits.

Pedestal Pumps: These have motors mounted above the sump, preventing them from getting wet.

Knowing your sump pump type will help you understand the specific maintenance it requires.

Regular Cleaning and Inspection Of Your Sump Pump

The sump pit should be cleaned at least once a year. Debris, like stones, dirt, and other objects, can accumulate and interfere with the pump’s operation. Inspecting your sump pump regularly for any signs of wear and tear:

  • Check for clogs in the screen or inlet opening.
  • Inspect the cord for damage.
  • Make sure the pump is upright and not tilting, which can affect the float arm and switch operation.

Test the Pump Regularly

Testing your sump pump regularly is crucial, especially before the rainy season starts. Pour a bucket of water into the pit to trigger the pump. This should make the float rise and activate the pump. If the pump doesn’t start, check for issues and resolve them promptly.

Check the Check Valve

The check valve prevents the water that gets pumped out from flowing back into the pit. A malfunctioning check valve can cause the pump to work overtime, increasing wear and tear. If you hear a thumping sound when the pump runs, it’s a sign that the check valve might not be functioning correctly.

Ensure the Outlet Pipes are Secure

Make sure the discharge line is free of obstructions and securely attached. During winter, ensure the pipe does not freeze as this can cause blockages forcing the pump to work harder, which could lead to pump failure. If you choose a reputable crawlspace contractor, like Foundation Solutions Group, they will install a freeze guard on your sump pump to ensure our cold Kentucky winter weather doesn’t cause problems for your sump pump.

Battery Maintenance for Backup Sump Pumps

If your sump pump has a battery backup, regularly check the battery’s charge and replace it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This is vital to ensure that the pump operates during a power outage.

Professional Maintenance Checks

While DIY checks and maintenance can go a long way, having your sump pump inspected by a professional annually is a good practice. They can spot issues that you might miss and perform complex maintenance tasks safely.

Innovation in Sump Pump Maintenance

At Foundation Solutions Group, we offer advanced solutions like the dual sump pump system with a two-part lid for easier access and maintenance, and innovative attachments to manage radon gases and accidental water flows into the sump pit. These solutions enhance safety and efficiency, providing peace of mind.

Maintaining your sump pump may not be the most glamorous task, but it’s crucial for preventing basement flooding and water damage. By following these tips, you can ensure that your sump pump is ready to handle whatever comes its way. For more detailed advice and professional maintenance services, call Foundation Solutions Group – your locally owned and operated crawl space repair company.