You might have heard of a sump pump after heavy rainfall when your neighbor says that they would be hip deep in water if it wasn’t for that device. They would also be up to their neck in repair bills to fix the water damage and restore their plumbing system. A sump pump is a very helpful device, think of it as extra insurance against flooding, and if you don’t have one, you may be considering one for your home. In this article, we will explain what a sump pump is and how it works to allow you to make a more informed decision.
What is a Sump Pump?
This is a submersible device that you would find installed inside a sump pit that’s located at the lowest point in a home that has one. This is typically some kind of crawl space or, more often, a basement location. The sump pit is small, but it’s a very important addition to your home if you want to prevent flooding in your basement.
How Does a Sump Pump Work?
For the vast majority of the time, the sump pump is simply waiting on standby for a water based emergency situation. When the heavier rainfall begins, the soil around the base of your home becomes oversaturated with water. This creates an excess of groundwater that is funneled into the sump pit, which begins to fill with this water. As the water rises, a sump pump float switch is activated automatically, and the water pump is turned on. The water pump then removes the water from the sump pit and deposits it in the nearest useful location, such as a dry well, a detention pond, or, more typically, a storm drain. Removing this excess water from the sump pit prevents it from rising up to the level of the basement floor, where it would cause localized flooding. So, essentially installing a sump pump is like taking out some extra flood insurance for your home.
10 Sump Pump Benefits
As you can see, a sump pump is a relatively small investment when you think about the protection against water damage for your home. To put this into perspective, here is a brief overview of ten sump benefits for your home.
- A sump pump will protect your basement against flood.
- Installing this device will reduce the levels of mold, fungus, and mildew growth in your home.
- When the home is drier, it will discourage the attention of termites and other invasive insects.
- A sump pump will help to keep the foundations of your home dry and intact.
- Installing a sump pump can improve your indoor air quality (IAQ).
- A drier basement will protect the appliances in that location such as your dryer, washer, and spare freezer from corrosion, rust, and water damage.
- The paint and any other wall coverings will be better protected against peeling under damp conditions.
- A sump pump will make the basement drier, there will be no moldy odor, and the space will be comfortable for all year round use.
- When you have a sump pump, you can relax no matter what the weather is doing outside.
- Installing a sump pump may help you to meet a homeowner’s insurance requirement for any basement flood damage that does occur.
It’s important to understand that a sump pump isn’t infallible; it could be overwhelmed is very severe rainfall or if a nearby river has burst. But, under normal to bad weather conditions, a sump pump is a very handy device if you want to protect your basement and it’s contents. Plus, as you can see from our list, it does have many other positive effects on the rest of your home too.
Do You Need a Sump Pump in Your Home?
Hopefully, you now understand the significant benefits that a sump pump installation can bring to a home. But, it’s fair to say that some homes probably need a device like this far more than some other homes. Although any homeowners could install a sump pump in their basement, we would highly recommend an installation if any of the following four circumstances applied to their home.
- The Climate
If your home is located in a climate that can receive a heavier fall of rain and/or snow, installing a sump pump is a good idea. In certain parts of our nation, we receive very heavy rain and snow for long periods of the year, and this adds a great deal of moisture to the soil. But, if you lived in a more desert like climate, it’s not likely that flooding is at the top of your priorities, although flash floods do occur there too.
- Flood Prone Homes
Many modern homes in recent years have been built on a plot that is flood prone. A combination of conditions, such as properties surrounded by hills, poorly draining soil, and low lying homes, make flooding more likely. The surrounding groundwater can become saturated during heavy rainfall, spring runoff, and snowstorms that are followed by melting snow.
- Previous Flooding Problems
If you’ve experienced a number of water related problems in the past or the basement has flooded in previous years, a sump pump would be a worthwhile investment. Many people struggle along with higher than normal moisture levels in their basement that can ruin anything stored there.
- A Finished Basement
Many people have a finished basement to add an extra level of useable living space in their homes. This can represent a significant investment, and it needs to be protected if you want to get adequate insurance coverage. Even if your home doesn’t fall into any of our previous three categories, you should consider adding a sump pump to your home if you have a finished basement living space.
Scheduling Your Sump Pump Installation
If you want a sump pump installation for your home, consult your local certified plumber first. They can offer expert help and advice on how to proceed without causing too much disruption in your home. A sump pump installation is very affordable, and the system can run on batteries, so you’re protected even if the power goes out.
By Giovanni Longo President Flood Brothers Plumbing
Giovanni Longo is a 3rd generation master plumber who has been practicing his craft and trade in the greater Los Angeles area for well over a decade and a half. A plumbing and hydraulics-engineering innovator, Giovanni’s particular world-class expertise focuses on dealing with challenging sewer system designs as well as resolving complex commercial and residential draining issues. As a certified Flood Mitigation expert, he is also well versed in a wide variety of water damage and remediation solution.