A sump pump prevents water from getting into your home and flooding your basement. It can also help protect your home from broken water pipes when the drain in your basement floor isn’t enough. To make sure your sump pump is working properly when you need it most, include the following maintenance tasks once or twice a year or whenever you suspect there may be a problem.
- Visually inspect the sump pump. When excessive water is around the foundation of your house, the sump pump should turn on, pump out the water, and turn off again. If you suspect this isn’t happening, remove the sump pit cover and look inside. If the water level is low, the pump is probably working correctly. While the cover is off, examine the sump pump for signs of damage and check for obstructions in the surrounding pit area. Also check the outlet pipe that transports water from the pit to the outside of your home to make sure it’s clear.
- Inspect the electrical components. A sump pump should be plugged in to a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) to protect it from a potential electrical short while it’s submerged. To test if your pump is working, try unplugging it and plugging it back in to see if it turns on. You may also want to consider a battery-based backup pump or water-pressure-driven pump that will operate if the electricity goes out or your primary sump pump fails.
- Pour water into the sump pit. Fill a five-gallon bucket with water and pour it into the sump pit. The sump pump should turn on when the water reaches a certain level. If the sump pump doesn’t turn on, it may be blocked or damaged. Clear any visible debris away from the sump pump to see if that’s the cause. If not, call a professional and schedule an inspection.
If you’re not comfortable testing your sump pump or you think there’s something wrong, call a trusted advisor at IT Landes at 215-256-4221 to schedule an appointment for an inspection.