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Sump Pump Guide The Ultimate Guide to Sump Pumps

How Does A Sump Pump Work?

To understand how a sump pump works, first, we need to know what a sump pump is.

A sump pump is an important safety device that helps to remove water from the basement. It is a kind of automatic water removal system which can be used for removing floodwater or other types of liquid.

The sump pump works by creating suction in the drain pipe and then it removes the water through the sump pit.

Next, we need to know about the parts of a sump pit. Let’s take a look at its basic components.

Read More: What Does a Sump Pump Do?

Important Parts of a Sump Pump

The parts of a sump pit are:

Sump Pump Motor:

This is the heart of the sump pump. It generates power to run the whole mechanism.

It has different power ratings, such as 1/4 horsepower, 1/2 horsepower, and 3/4 horsepower.  These power ratings indicate the amount of energy required to operate the pump. This is measured in watts.

It is also available in different GPH (Gallons Per Hour). GPH indicates how much water the pump can handle per hour. For example, if you have a sump pump rated at 1000 GPH, it means that it can handle up to 1000 gallons of water per hour.

Discharge Pipe:

It is one of the most important components of a sump pump. It connects the motor with the sump pit. It should be made of plastic material so that it can withstand high pressure.

This is where the water enters the sump pit and drains water into the sewer line.

how does sump pump work

Float Switch:

This is a float valve connected to the motor. When there is no water present in the sump pit, the float rises with air pressure. As soon as the water enters the sump pit, it pushes down on the float, making contact with the electrical contacts. Once this happens, the electricity will flow into the motor and start working.

Check Valve:

A check valve prevents the backflow of water from the discharge pipe into the sump pit. If the check valve does not work properly, it may allow water to enter the sump pit even when the sump pump is running.

Battery Backup System:

If your sump pump fails while you are away, it might cause damage to your home. To prevent this, you can install a battery backup unit. It provides a continuous power supply until the main power source returns.

There are models with a battery backup sump pump system to help you out during emergencies.

One such popular model is CITE-33 Sump Pump from The Basement Watchdog. It is a combination sump pump that comes with a primary pump as well as a backup pump. If one fails the other ensures the smooth operation.

Read More: How To Install A Sump Pump?

How Does a Sump Pump Work?

If you live in a house with a basement, having a sump pump installed is essential. The sump pump water discharge system helps in maintaining and controlling the water in the basement.

When there is heavy rain outside, the water flows towards the lowest point in the area. In case of flooding, the water level rises in the basement. Then, the water overflows into the sump pit, causing damage to the foundation walls.

In order to avoid this situation, a sump pump is needed.

sump pump installation

They are very useful devices that help to keep the basement dry and safe. In order to use them effectively, you need to learn more about their operation.

When water accumulates in the sump pit because of heavy rainfall or any other reason, the sump pump comes into action.

The float switch in the sump pump detects the presence of water in the underground part of the house.

The sensor sends an electric signal to the pump’s controller. This activates the pump.

The pump then starts operating. The sump pump creates a vacuum inside the sump pit and draws the water in using its suction hose. This is done using an electric motor.

Then, the water travels through the discharge pipe into the drain pipe.

check valve sump pump

Once the pump stops pumping, the check valve closes automatically. This allows the water to go only in one direction; it cannot return into the sump pit again. Then the pump will start again causing another cycle and the pump may wear out quickly.

What Are Different Types Of Sump Pumps?

Sump pumps come in different sizes and styles depending on the needs of each homeowner.

You can choose either a submersible pump or a pedestal type.

Submersible Sump Pumps:

Submersible Sump Pumps are placed inside the ground and have a submersible motor.

These types of sump pumps produce a higher volume of water since they have a larger capacity than a standard sump pump. These pumps are ideal for homes with large basements and crawl spaces.

People who use these are mainly those who want high flow rates.

Pedestal Sump Pumps:

Pedestal-type sump pumps are usually used in small houses which do not need a big flood control system.

They are also cheaper compared to the ones made for bigger houses.

These pumps fit well in attics too as they do not require space like a submersible sump pump.

Depending on your requirements, you can buy one type of sump pump. But before buying a sump pump model, always make sure that you know all its features and specifications well!​ 

How Long Does a Sump Pump Last?

A sump pump may last up to 10 years or more, however, if you don’t maintain it properly it won’t be able to perform efficiently.

Always remember to change the filter at least once every 6 months. If you notice any signs of clogging, remove the sediment build-up manually.

submersible sump pumps

Some people prefer to clean the debris from the impeller wheel regularly. Cleaning the sump pump impeller ensures that all parts stay clear and prevent any blockages.

You must perform certain maintenance measures regularly so that your sump pump works effectively.

In order to know more about how different factors impact your sump pump, we have written a detailed article regarding this topic below:

10 Important Factors that Determines Sump Pump Life

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