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Sump Pump Not Working?

by B.Annie on June 7, 2018

A Sump Pump is used to prevent major flooding in your home. Usually placed in a basement and installed by a plumber, the sump pump is the first line of defense against flooding.  Unfortunately, as with anything electronic or mechanical,  failure is possible.

What causes failure?

There are several reasons a sump pump may fail including:

1.Debris in the pump –

When the pit that the sump pump sits in gets filled with debris it can cause major damage to the pump, rendering it inefficient if not useless. The debris from around the pit can make its way into the pump and make it shut down completely. Another possibility with debris in the pit surrounding your sump pump is that it jams the switch keeping your pump on. When this happens the pump will not turn off in the way it is meant to and will, eventually, burn out.

2. Clogged or Frozen discharge lines –

Clogged lines can cause failure in the sump pump.  A professional plumber can help install systems to prevent freezing of the discharge lines. Installing a grate over the lines can also help prevent mice or other small animals from getting in and creating a clog.

3. Broken Valve –

Because sump pumps are located in the basement of a house the water needs to be carried up before moving it out of the house. The valve prevents water from flowing back into the house and causing major failures of the system.

4. Power outage –

This is preventable with a backup power source, but without electricity your sump pump will not be able to operate.

Many of these problems can be prevented through regular inspections. Before a flood you can call your local plumber and have your sump pump checked to ensure that it will not fail when you need it.

After Sump Pump Failure

If you sump pump fails your first instinct by be to wade in or call a plumber.  Stop!

Call an electrician! An electrician cannot fix the flooding, but major flooding can cause electrical hazards. Once safety is cared for call a plumber to repair the damage. At Winstar Home Services this is one call.  We have electricians and plumbers on staff 24/7.

Often times it is not weather that causes flooding, but broken pipes, leaking dishwashers or washing machines, or clogged drains. These problems need to be solved before a flood happens again. A trained plumber is able to come into your home after flooding occurs to reestablish flow in your sewage line. This can clear out the water in your basement and help reestablish a working flow to prevent further damage.

Don’t do it yourself

Clean up sounds stressful and nobody wants to pay more than what is needed. But it is far more important that you and your family are safe. Flooding can cause electrical damage putting you at risk for electrocution.

In addition, the water may be contaminated, and if not treated properly or wearing proper protective gear the water can cause rashes or illness.

It is important to know when water may be contaminated, as it can affect any food or cookware that it touches. A person who has dealt with multiple floods, such as a plumber, will be better equipped to tell you whether it is contaminated water or safe tap water that has flooded your house.