Do you have a backup sump pump?

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Do you have a backup system for your sump pump in case of a pump or power failure?

Many insurance companies now require home owner’s to have a sump pump installed in order to qualify for proper flood coverage. Some companies offer subsidies to help offset the cost. Very recently, we had a combination of heavy rain and lightening resulting in a power failure that lasted several hours. As is always the case after this type of event, people were calling our office the next day to ask about what can be done to help avoid the flooded basement which resulted.

Here are three options to consider…

  1. Is there a floor drain nearby which is connected to the sanitary sewer? If so, this is always your best option. As long as the top of the floor drain and the top of the sump pit are lower than the rest of the basement and the water is able to overflow to the floor drain, there will be no flood.

  2. You can install a water back up system. These are powered by your municipal waterline and do a reasonably reliable job of removing up to 800 gallons/hr. out of the pit (depending on the model, water pressure and discharge head pressure). This type will work indefinitely, but you can use a significant amount of municipal water is the problem is not corrected soon. Also, be very careful of the type you buy. Many of the units on the market are of very questionable quality! Finally, be sure to install an approved back-flow prevention device to ensure the safety of your potable water

  3. Install a battery backup system. This has a higher short term discharge capacity than the water-driven model, but it is dependant on a marine battery which has sufficient charge for a somewhat limited amount of run time. They generally recommend battery replacement every 3 or 4 years so this can be a bit of a recurring cost factor to consider. Again, before purchasing, compare the quality and capacity. We recommend that either system be professionally installed to ensure code compatibility and peace of mind.