What is a Sump Pump?

A sump pump is a machine that pumps water out of a basement. The water might be the result of a flood or might be groundwater that’s welling up from below the basement. Sump pump installation is a job left to a highly trained and professional plumber. He or she can be a residential plumber or a commercial plumber.

To install a sump pump requires the plumber to find the lowest point in the basement and then excavate a sump pit. The pump is then installed on a gravel bed, and a drainage line to the sewer or septic system is installed. The system should come with a sump pump alarm and sump pump backup. The sump pump backup is powered by batteries. They will keep the pump working in case the power goes out in the rest of the building.

The sump pump begins to work when water rises to a certain level in the sump pit. The water lifts a balloon float that looks and behaves much like a balloon float in a toilet tank. The pump is then turned on and pumps excess water through the drainage pipe. The water is prevented from re-entering the pump through a check valve.

There’s also another type of sump pump that removes waste from a toilet that’s installed in the basement. Plumbing works through gravity, and the main drain might be above the level of the basement floor. A sewage sump pump grinds up solid waste and ejects it upward toward the main drain. It also has a check valve that prevents wastes from back flowing.

Before a home or business owner has a sump pump installed, he or she should consult with a residential plumber or a commercial plumber to determine just how much water the basement might receive in event of a flood. That way, the plumber can determine how powerful the sump pump needs to be.

Though there are some things a homeowner can do to service a sump pump, major repairs need to be left to professional plumbing services. Among problems that call for professional plumbing work are:

• The pump overheating
• A sump pump that’s noisy and cycles on and off
• A sump pump that doesn’t turn off
• A sump pump that doesn’t turn on
• A slow running pump
• A pump that doesn’t pump water at all

A home or business owner should also possess contact information for a highly trained, fast response plumber in case of emergencies.