As the basement watchdog, your sump pump needs to be prepared for a flood at any moment. But during a storm, anything can happen and impact your sump pump’s ability to keep your basement or crawl space dry. Expect the unexpected and install a water-powered or battery backup for your sump pump as soon as possible. With a backup solution, you can have peace of mind that your sump pump is always ready to protect your home!
What Happens to My Sump Pump if the Power Goes Out?
Just like all other appliances and devices that require electricity, your sump pump will not function in a power outage.
Once the power goes out, the sump pump will stop pumping water, which can spell disaster for your home. This will cause the water to build up in the sump pit until it spills out and floods your basement.
Sometimes, a malfunctioning or unmaintained sump pump may lose power even if the rest of the house does not. For peace of mind, install a backup system for your sump pump as soon as possible.
How Can I Tell if My Sump Pump Has a Backup System?
Now, you know how important it is to have a backup for your sump pump—but before you call a local plumber for an installation, let’s check if your system already has an extra power source in place.
Luckily, it’s pretty easy to tell whether your sump pump has a battery backup. Look for something resembling a car battery that sits right next to your sump pit or a water line to the pump system and is connected to the sump pump system.
How Many Hours Does a Sump Pump Backup Last?
A new or fully-charged battery backup for your sump pump can last several hours if it’s pumping water continuously. It might even last 1-3 days if it’s only pumping intermittently. Obviously, the longer the pump runs, the shorter the battery’s life.
A water-powered backup doesn’t depend on a battery to operate, it works off of your home’s municipal water supply. When your sump pump fails this backup is powered by water to ensure that there is no damage to your home. They can run as long as the water supply to the home is uninterrupted. Some areas require an annual test to be completed on the system, AP Plumbing’s technicians will go over the options and help you make a decision that is best for your home.
To make sure you get the most out of your sump pump backup, it’s important to maintain it. The next time you inspect your sump pump—which should be at least once a year, preferably in the spring—also check on the backup pump and/or battery.
How Often Should My Sump Pump Battery Backup Be Replaced?
You don’t want to install a battery backup for your sump pump just to find out it’s not working when you need it most. Like every system in your home, the battery needs regular maintenance to function properly. With good upkeep, a high-quality sump pump battery backup should last about 5 years before it needs to be replaced.
However, if you haven’t so much as looked at your battery (let alone touched it) since it was installed, you might find that your unit will need to be replaced in the first 2-3 years instead.
Keep an eye out for these indicators that your sump pump battery backup is nearing the end of its lifespan:
- Weak Water Pumping: How many gallons per minute is your battery capable of handling? Pour water into the sump pit and unplug the primary sump pump so that the battery backup takes over. If you notice weak water pumping or water levels that are slow to dwindle, it’s time for a replacement.
- Slow Charging: You’ll need a new battery if your current one is slow to charge or doesn’t last as long as it’s supposed to.
- Visible Damage: Any swelling, frayed wires, or other signs of visible damage should be a red flag. Don’t use a damaged battery backup for your sump pump! This can be hazardous.
- Old Age: Last but not least, a battery that is past its prime should be replaced with a new one.
Contact AP Plumbing for All Your Sump Pump Backup Needs!
Your neighbors at AP Plumbing are here to help. We can handle everything from a battery replacement to a new sump pump or backup pump installation in Syracuse, NY, and more.
As winter turns to spring, there’s no better time to put your home’s health at the forefront of your mind and schedule an inspection with a trusted team. Our plumbers will thoroughly check valves, float switches, and even the motor itself to make sure your sump pump is ready for the stormy weather ahead.
If you need a new sump pump, we’ll walk you through our recommendations as well as top pump ratings to help you choose the perfect system for your home.