Why Do You Need A Sump Pump?

Why Do You Need A Sump Pump?

You might have friends or family who have installed sump pumps in their San Antonio, TX, homes, but do you need one? A sump pump can provide valuable protection, safeguarding your home from water damage caused by heavy rainfall or burst pipes.

Why You Need a Sump Pump in San Antonio

The primary responsibilities of a sump pump are moisture elimination and flooding prevention. You might think you don’t have moisture in your home’s basement or crawl space, but the American Society of Home Inspectors disagrees. According to their research, more than 60% of Americans have some amount of moisture in those areas.

Sump pumps remove excess water from the home’s foundation caused by heavy rainfall. When excess water around the home’s exterior walls isn’t removed, it begins to creep into the basement or the lowest level in the house through cracks in the flooring or foundation walls. You might not see the water, but it’s there, and the moisture encourages mold growth.

Aside from moisture buildup, sump pumps also prevent destructive circumstances should a pipe burst under the home’s slab foundation. Slab leaks can exist for days or weeks without you noticing because they’re hidden. They’re quite damaging to your home’s structural integrity. Even the tiniest leak can erode the soil and cause the foundation to shift. Concrete is tough but not indestructible. After a while, water escaping from the pipes causes hairline cracks in the concrete and the foundation walls.

How a Sump Pump Works

Sump pumps use electricity and contain two parts: the pit and the pump. First, a specially constructed pit is installed below the basement’s surface. This is where the water drains. If you don’t have a basement, the hole for the pit can be dug in a utility closet or bathroom at the lowest level or installed in a garage or crawlspace. The plumber you hire helps you determine the best location based on your home’s design.

Inside the sump pit is an automated floatation system and the pump itself. When water levels reach a certain level, it activates the float switch. Then, the water gets pumped out of the pit, through a pipe, and drains to an area away from the home’s foundation.

What Happens if the Electricity Fails?

When severe storms bring torrential rainfall, you want to make sure your sump pump can do its job effectively, especially if there’s a power outage. This is where a backup battery sump pump comes into play. A backup battery sump pump takes over for the electric pump when it loses power. Some benefits of a backup battery-operated pump include continuous operation during a power outage or primary pump failure and longer running times than an electric pump.

You’ve already spent the money to install the main sump pump. Spending a little more money to install a battery-operated backup pump is far less expensive than repairing foundation issues or hiring a restoration company to repair water damage. The best time to install a backup battery sump pump is before spring when rainfall is more prevalent. To ensure it’s set up correctly, always make sure to hire a licensed plumber for the installation.

Do I Need a Secondary Pump?

Most of the time, the battery-operated sump pump will work fine if the power supply goes down for a short time. If you live in a flood-prone area or have a yard that becomes saturated quickly during heavy rainfall and you think all the water will overrun your primary sump pump, then you might need a secondary pump.

A secondary pump works the same as your primary pump. The only difference is where it’s located. A plumber might recommend installing a secondary pump in another area of the home’s lowest level to handle excess water that enters the home in that area. This would generally occur in opposite corners of your basement if needed.

We suggest speaking with a licensed plumber to discuss your situation more in-depth and to find the best solution for your home. Plumbers can recommend the best dual sump pump system for your home and your budget. This will ensure that you have adequate sump pump coverage for your home based on square footage and design.

Who Installs Sump Pumps?

You might have seen sump pump kits at hardware stores, but we highly recommend you don’t attempt a DIY sump pump installation. While most new construction homes already have sump pump rough-ins, meaning the pit has already been dug, older homes might not.

Digging the hole requires jackhammering through concrete. It also requires installing an exterior pipe through the foundation’s wall to remove the water from the pit. In some cases, you might even want a more intricate perimeter pipe system. Only licensed plumbers can handle this installation.

How to Keep Your Sump Pump Primed and Ready

A sump pump does your home no good if it’s not working. Sump pump failure can lead to costly water cleanup services and damage your belongings. Maintaining your sump pump can help you avoid these circumstances.

Here are some ways to keep your pump maintained:

Check the Pump’s Orientation

The pump should always remain upright. If it’s tilted, the float arm can jam and won’t operate correctly.

Make Sure Pipes Are Fastened

You want to ensure the pipe that removes water from the pump is tightly fastened. You also want to make certain it’s at least 20 feet from the foundation to prevent pumped water from seeping back in.

Test the Float

Ensure the float switch is activated. The easiest way to check this is to fill a bucket with water and pour it into the pit. If the pump doesn’t start immediately when the water reaches a certain level, call for repairs. The pump should start, run for a few seconds, and then turn off promptly.

Clean the Pump

Submersible pumps need cleaning occasionally because rocks can get into the bottom grate and block the inlet. Remove the pump from the pit and thoroughly clean the bottom grate to remove rocks and any other debris.

Examine the Vent Hole

Blockages prevent water from flowing into the outlet tube. If the vent is blocked, it could cause backups in your basement, crawlspace, or wherever your sump pump is located.

Local Experts for All Your Sump Pump Needs

You want to keep your home watertight, and a sump pump helps you achieve this goal. At Rosenberg Plumbing & Air, our experts understand the importance and function of sump pumps. Our satisfied customers appreciate our workmanship and dedication to quality service. With over 37 years of serving the San Antonio community, we’re known for our high standards and affordable, fair prices. We’re proud BBB-accredited members with an A+ rating and a 2023 Nextdoor award recipient. In addition to our plumbing services, we also offer residents cooling and heating services such as new equipment installation, emergency repairs, and routine maintenance.

To learn more about sump pump installation in San Antonio, fill out our online form or call Rosenberg Plumbing & Air today!

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