Sump pump maintenance
Sump pumps are a fairly reliable piece of equipment, something you don’t often think about, until the time it doesn’t work properly. Regular maintenance can help extend the life of your sump pump, plus give you piece of mind when the next storm event happens.
Sump pumps last an average of 10 years; some last longer and some don’t last that long, depending on how often and hard they have to work. If your current sump pump is older than 10 years, perhaps you should seriously think about getting a replacement.
Here are a few things you should do at least once a year to ensure your sump pump works properly.
- Check the wiring and the plug. If the wiring looks worn, or the plug has trouble staying plugged in, consider a replacement.
- Check for debris in the sump pit. Occasionally, debris can get into the pit, causing the float mechanism to be blocked, and may create an unwanted issue later on.
- Remove the sump pump from the pit and clean the bottom grate. During normal operation, strong suction from your sump may pull small stones up from the bottom and get wedged in the grate.
- Make sure the pump is sitting upright. After checking for debris and the bottom grate, place the sump pump back in the pit, sitting as upright as possible. You want to avoid the pump tipping when storm water starts to flow into the pit.
- Add water to the pit to check for normal operation. Using a five gallon bucket, add water to see if your sump pump both starts when it should, and shut off when it should. Any deviation from normal, think about replacing the pump. If you have to shake the pipe to either get the pump started or stop, replace the pump.
- Finally, check the outlet piping to make sure it is connecting properly, and not leaking anywhere.
If you have a backup sump pump, and/or back up power source, take a moment to check and make sure they are working properly as well.
If you suffer water damage from sump pump issues (sump pump not working or couldn’t keep up with extreme rain rates), call the water damage experts at SERVPRO of Bedford Park/Burbank at 708-430-3600. We can extract the water, dry contents and structure, and check for possible mold.