Sump Pump Service FAQs | Bloomington, IL

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Bloomington, IL, receives a fair amount of rain every year. When storms strike, water can rush into the basement, leading to costly, messy flood damage. Fortunately, you can greatly decrease your risk of ending up with water in your basement with a sump pump. Read on for answers to your questions about sump pump services.

What Is a Sump Pump?

A sump pump is a machine that transfers water out of your basement. The pump gets its name from its installation location, called a sump or basin. Once the pump is installed, it detects increases in water pressure. Once the pressure reaches a certain level, the pump begins to pump out the water, pushing it through a line called an effluent that leads to a safe drainage area.

Where Does Water from a Sump Pump Go?

The basin for a sump pump is usually placed below the surface of the basement floor, and the drainage area is generally located 10 to 20 feet from a house’s foundation. Depending on where you live, there may be rules regarding where you can install a sump pump and where the drainage area must be positioned. A plumber experienced in providing sump pump services can help to ensure that you comply with local laws and regulations.

What Types of Sump Pumps Are Available?

There are two main types of sump pumps:

  • Submersible sump pumps have a motor and a pump in one unit and are completely submerged within the basin. The water in the basin acts as an insulator, reducing the amount of noise that the pump produces. Although they are highly effective, they may not last as long as some other pumps due to their full submersion. This may also mean an increased need for maintenance sump pump services.
  • Pedestal sump pumps have a separate motor that goes on a pedestal on top of the basin, while the pump is located inside the sump. A hose connects the two pieces. This design keeps the motor out of the water, helping to extend its life and simplify maintenance. On the downside, the motor can be noisy.

How Do I Know Which Type of Sump Pump Is Right for Me?

When shopping for a sump pump, you’ll need to consider the horsepower, which tells you how much overall power the pump has. Homes in areas of Bloomington, IL, that are considered a high risk for flooding will require a more powerful pump. You also need to ensure that you don’t purchase a pump too powerful for your needs. Doing so could cause the pump to turn on and off repeatedly, resulting in an increased need for maintenance. A plumber knowledgeable about sump pump services can provide you with personalized advice regarding which model is best for your home.

What Powers a Sump Pump?

Sump pumps use electricity as their main source of power. Unfortunately, this means that if a blackout occurs during a storm, a standard sump pump will fail. To address this problem, manufacturers offer units that have backup power either from a battery or water power.

What Is a Switch System?

A switch system is what allows a sump pump to turn on and off. There are many types available:

  • Pressure switches kick in when water pressure increases during flooding and turn the unit off when the water pressure decreases.
  • Float switches float on the surface of the water and respond to increases in water level.
  • Diaphragm switches become concave when water pressure increases and flatten out as it decreases.
  • Electronic switches use electronic sensors to measure water pressure.

Each switch type has its own advantages and disadvantages. A professional plumber can explain them to you during a sump pump services consultation.

Do I Need to Have a Sump Pump?

If you have a basement, installing a sump pump is a good idea. Flooding doesn’t just cause damage to property. The increase in moisture can give rise to mold that can pose serious health risks and worsen problems like allergies and asthma. By removing excess water, sump pumps help prevent dampness in basements to fight mold growth.

How Long Does a Sump Pump Last?

Like any machine, sump pumps wear out over time. Most sump pumps last between 7 and 10 years. Human error can result in pumps running too much. This can lead to excess wear and tear, making it important that you leave sump pump services like installation and maintenance to the pros.

What Are Some Signs That It’s Time to Replace My Sump Pump?

If you notice any of the following, contact a plumber for sump pump services:

  • Noise. If you are suddenly able to hear your sump pump run or the unit seems noisier, the motor or impeller may be wearing out. Normally, motors make a humming or droning sound. Rattling, clanging, and screeching noises are usually signs of a problem.
  • Excessive running. If your sump pump begins to run all the time despite weather conditions, it may be time for a replacement. The switch may also need to be fixed or replaced. In brand-new units, this is a good indication that the pump is not the right size for your home.
  • Unpleasant smells. When you give your basement a sniff, you should smell mildew or mold. The presence of these odors indicates that the sump pump is allowing moisture buildup.
  • Complete failure. If your unit doesn’t turn on during heavy rainfall, call an emergency plumber right away for sump pump services.

Whether you want to install your first sump pump or need your existing unit serviced or replaced, Covenant Plumbing in Bloomington, IL, is here to help. We always have a master plumber on staff to answer your questions, provide you with a quote and do the work needed. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for sump pump services.

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