DIY Tips From the Warner Service Blog

(Sump) Pump the Jam: Is a Sump Pump Right for Your Home?

Posted by Warner Service on Jan 12, 2016 8:00:00 AM

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It doesn’t take much water to cause some serious damage to your home, and it can cost thousands of dollars to fix the result of surplus rainwater and/or snow. In order to avoid these potential problems, it’s a good idea to invest in a sump pump. This is a device that uses a “float” to activate a machine that begins pumping water away from your home’s foundation when a certain water level is reached.

Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, like all good things, sump pumps come with their pros and their cons. To help you decide if this device is right for your home, here is Warner Service’s guide to the advantages and disadvantages of sump pumps:

Pros:

  • If you purchase a pedestal model sump pump, the motor sits above the water, which means that the device lasts longer and performs better and smoother. This model is typically also cheaper.
  • Sump pumps are durable and reliable, making them a necessity for newly finished basements. Also, most sump pumps last between 8 to 10 years with proper care and maintenance, so repairs and replacements aren’t frequent, especially with the one-year warranty offered by most companies.
  • Back-up systems use batteries to activate the sump pump, which means you will get the same results without the high electric bill. This also makes it more environmentally friendly.
  • Using a sump pump is more effective than putting a moisture barrier around your home’s foundation. With sump pumps, water cannot seep through cracks or drown crawl spaces.
  • Sump pump systems are quick. With major leaks or unexpected heavy weather, these devices are proactive in handling overflow in a relatively short amount of time unlike a curtain drain system.
  • Sump pumps help prevent electrical fires because water can’t reach your wires to short-circuit them during thunderstorms. It also helps reduce mold and mildew from a damp basement, preventing health hazards to your family. 

Cons:

  • Because of its positioning, the pedestal model is noisier than most home appliances.
  • Sump pumps that run on electricity can drain your electric bill even when they’re not on the job.
  • Heavy thunderstorms often lead to power outages, which means that every electric-powered sump pump (and your home) are out of luck. No power, no pump.
  • Sump pumps cost between $300 to $700 plus installation charges, so they’re not recommended unless your home’s location experiences heavy rainfall or snow year-round.
  • The “float” can catch on debris, which can prevent it from detecting the rising water level. If the “float” can’t detect the rising water level then the whole device becomes useless.
  • Air can seep into the device’s valves, locking it up. This will prevent the entire pumping motion while still charging your electric bill for being on. It could also shorten the lifespan of your apparatus.
  • With the required digging to put a sump pump into place, radon could be emitted from the ground, creating a potential health hazard.

With the unpredictable weather in Maryland, a sump pump may be a good investment for your home, especially if you live in an area that receives heavy rainfall during the spring or heavy snowfall during the winter. However, if you reside in an area that doesn’t experience that type of weather often, you may want to invest your money in something else like these cool eco-friendly gadgets for your home.

If you have any questions about how sump pumps work or if the device is right for your location, contact Warner Service today.

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Topics: Plumbing, Maintenance