Buying A Sump Pump: Keep These 5 Tips In Mind
During hurricane season especially, a sump pump can be a worthwhile investment to reduce the risk of your basement from flooding. But what kind should you get? What do you need and what should it be able to do? Here are five tips for buying a sump pump.
1. Horsepower – How much horsepower you need depends on how much water needs to be pumped. If your basement is flooding, you should choose a sump pump with higher horsepower. But if you only have a bit of standing water, that much power will just waste energy, and you should choose something smaller.
2. Head pressure – A sump pump pumps water through a discharge pipe that extends up to the ground level, where it can drain safely outside. The pump’s head pressure is how high it can pump water up the pipe before it stops flowing. Make sure you take the height of your basement into consideration and get a sump pump with enough head pressure to get the water through the pipe and drain properly.
3. Manual vs. automatic – An automatic sump pump senses when there’s a build-up of water inside, either through water pressure or a float switch similar to the one in a toilet tank, and begins pumping. If you don’t need to pump very often, you might decide to save money by buying a sump pump that you activate manually, as needed. In general, though, the convenience of the automatic system outweighs the slightly higher cost.
4. Power cord – Your sump pump should never be plugged into an extension cord, but always into a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI): an outlet that monitors power flow, preventing electric shock. Therefore, when buying a sump pump, you need to choose one with a power cord long enough to reach the nearest GFCI.
5. Backup or alarm system – Make sure you have an alarm to alert you and/or a battery-powered back-up pump to take over in case something goes wrong with your pump.
For further information on buying a sump pump or to get more plumbing or general home comfort advice, contact our experts at Sobieski Services.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Wilmington, Delaware and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).
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