COMPONENTS AND FUNCTIONS OF SUMP PUMPS

If you live in a building constructed according to federal laws, your house will already have a sump pump at the lowest point of the basement for water to collect. The sump is meant to hold a sump pump, which will drain out water from your basement to an acceptable external drainage.

Here are some reasons why you should have a sump pump installed in your basement and what could happen if water is not removed from your basement.

  • Loosening of plaster and breakage of paint, leading to unsightly cracks developing in the walls.
  • Constant damp conditions in the walls and floor of the house in conducive to development of algae and fungi, causing unhygienic conditions.
  • Damp walls also reduce the temperature of the room, and this may be problematic if you’re susceptible to fever, cold and coughs.
  • The water in the basement can weaken building foundations.
  • The damp in the walls can cause non-protected metallic pipe, wiring and rods to rust, thereby increasing chances of leaks, etc.
  • In case of heavy rains and storms, the sump may overflow and the basement may be flooded, thereby making the basement unusable for months.

If you purchase a sump pump for your home it is unlikely that you will regret spending the money since sump pumps are economical and can last anywhere between 5 to 20 years. It is better to invest in a sump pump  rather than spend a fortune fixing your basement or your house after stagnant water has flooded and/or weakened it.

Components of a Sump Pump  
  • A centrifugal motor is usually used in sump pumps. Most commercial sump pumps have between ¼ to 1HP, which makes them capable of handling even the worst flooding and water pressure without difficulty.
  • An impeller is a fan-like structure that is attached to the bottom of the motor assembly (most modern sump pumps come pre-attached). It rotates to create a centrifugal force that produces a low pressure region at the mouth of the discharge, thereby funneling the water into it and out through the discharge pipe.
  • Discharge refers to a cylindrical tube which is open at both ends. Discharges can be conical at one end, and cylindrical at the other. They help funnel the water into the discharge pipe, which in turn takes the water out of the sump.
  • The discharge pipe may be a simple garden hose, a copper pipe or a PVC pipe, but normally preference is given to the PVC pipes due to their sturdiness and freedom from corrosion.
  • Switches are many types, but the most common is the float switch. Comprising of a plastic float attached by a thin shaft to the switch, the float acts as the trigger for the switch. When the water pushes the float up, the switch turns the motor on and the sump pump begins to remove the water.
  • The check valve is placed in the discharge and (optionally) in the water inlet, in case the sump pump be a water-powered one. Once water has been pushed out and the motor stops, some water remains in the pipes and this can flow back into the pump, causing it to short-cycle and malfunction. The check valve blocks the return of water into the motor, and therefore keeps it safe.

Like every industry, the sump pump industry is evolving fast, and new products are coming up each year. However, it is not necessary that every product will have to be a new. Sometimes companies come out with improved versions of old products that have a good reputation in the market, and these prove to be better than the latest offerings.

At Ace Hi Plumbing, Heating & Air, we recommend going with the Zoeller M53. This is a great product that offers quiet operation and is energy efficient. To find out more or to schedule an appointment, call us today at 970-667-0300. We offer 24-hour emergency service in the Northern Colorado area including Loveland, Fort Collins, Berthoud, Longmont, Greeley, Johnstown and Estes Park.

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