Sump Pump Failure

If your house has a basement, a sump pump is a great appliance to prevent against flooding. A pump sump essentially diverts water from the house safely, especially at times when there is a threat of your home getting flooded and the risk of water damage.


If there is sump pump failure, your basement can get flooded and if this occurs, you must act very quickly. Water damage can be a progressive problem and if not handled quickly, can lead to the growth of mold and mildew, structural damage, etc.


Sump pumps are extremely important and help to keep the basement in your home dry. When there are heavy rains, the pump switches on and removes the water away from your home. However, sometimes your sump pump can malfunction and fail, which can cause damage to your home. In this article, we will discuss some of the causes of pump failure and what to do when this happens.


Causes for Sump Pump Failure

Pump Is Overworked

If the water is coming in very fast or your sump pump is very old, the appliance cannot handle the amount of water alone. Typically, this occurs when there are very heavy rains or in the case of flash floods. The quality of the sump pump also makes a difference. A flimsy plastic model cannot withstand a thunderstorm.


What You Can Do

Either you can buy a sump pump with a larger capacity or buy another pump to get twice the quantity of water to be pumped out. This way you will not have to get worried about water damage each time there are heavy rains.


No Water in the Sump Pump

This essentially means that the sump pump has not been installed properly or it is not connected to the drainage system. The drainage system is extremely important and it is ideal to have the drain tile installed along the basement lining or inside or outside the sump pump. There will not be any problem as long as the drain collects the water and drains it into the pit. However, even a sump pump will not help if the drain tile is damaged.


What You Can Do

Have the drainage system inspected by a licensed plumber and repair or replace it.


Clogged Sump Pump

There are many ways in which the sump pump can get clogged and this can cause a backup resulting in water damage. Some of the reasons for clogging of the sump pump are:

  • The sump pump pit may be clogged with dirt and debris.
  • The sump pump can get dirty and clogged when the pit gets clogged with silt.
  • The switch that turns on the pump gets clogged or jammed.
  • Cheap models of switches that get jammed or tangled and will not switch on or off, causing a huge water mess.


What You Can Do

Get a plumber to inspect the sump pump and see if it can be repaired or if it is required to be replaced. Ensure that it has an airtight lid which does not allow any debris from entering.


Clogged Discharge Lines

The discharge lines of the sump pump may be clogged or frozen causing the system to malfunction.


What You Can Do

Clean the sump pump properly and in winter, unfreeze them. You can add some insulation around the discharge lines in the colder months to prevent them from freezing.


Sump Pump Loses Power

If there is a loss of power and you’re not at home then you may face a serious risk of the basement getting flooded. Some of the common reasons for a power outage are power lines that get knocked down. Circuit breaker trips or if the sump pump is unplugged.


What You Can Do

You can control things like the circuit breaker. However, for a power outage, installing a battery backup can keep the pump working and prevent water from entering.


Non-Stop Running of the Sump Pump

If you have the pump running continuously, but there is no water, then there is a problem which requires to be sorted or the pump will burn out. Some of the common causes for this are:

  • Broken or a missing check valve that allows the water to flow back into the pit and into the basement.
  • Wrong liner size or sump pump. The pump may be too small to handle the water coming in or the pit may be too small and the water may fill very quickly causing the pump to go on an overdrive.
  • The float switches in the sump pump may be clogged and tangled.


What You Can Do

Get a plumber to check the sump pump before a rainstorm and ensure that it is working properly.


Your sump pump can malfunction due to several reasons. Our Water Mold Fire Restoration team can help you if your sump pump fails and help restore your home in case of any water damage. So, call us at 800-874-2122 for 24/7/365 emergency response!