Backup sump pumps are designed to act as a failsafe in case your main sump pump fails, preventing your basement and foundation from flooding during heavy rainfall. There are two main types of backup sump pumps, differentiated by their power source: battery and water powered. Despite performing the same function, their different power sources confer a distinct set of advantages and drawbacks to each type of backup sump pump. Knowing what each type of backup pump has to offer can help you choose the one that best fits your plumbing needs.
Battery-Powered Backup Sump Pumps
Battery-powered backup sump pumps, like their name suggests, make use of a battery to pump water out of your home during periods of excessive rainfall. This means that during a power outage, they are able to continue operating for a period of time. They can be easily installed into an already existing plumbing system, and typically make use of the same discharge pipe as your main sump pump (though this will depend on the specific model). This helps reduce the installation costs.
However, battery powered backup sump pumps are not able to run indefinitely. The battery will only last so long before giving out in the event of a power outage, and if it does not outlast the storm, your home could end up flooding or suffering from water damage anyway. Additionally, every few years the battery needs to be replaced, as its capacity will gradually decrease, increasing long-run maintenance costs.
Water Powered Backup Sump Pumps
Water-powered backup sump pumps operate by passing water from your water supply at a high speed through their system, which creates suction. This draws water out of your sump pit and will carry it out of the discharge pipe. This means that they are not dependent on an external power source and can continue to run indefinitely. Additionally, this helps reduce the amount of maintenance that you have to do on your sump pump system, as there are no batteries or parts that need to be replaced over time.
However, water-powered sump pumps cannot be installed on all plumbing systems. Any homes that use a well will be unable to use a water powered sump pump, and the water pressure and flow rate of your water supply even if you're connected to a city water system has to meet a certain minimum for the pump to work.
If you're not sure what type of backup sump pump is best for you, contact a plumber like those at Dependable Plumbing for assistance.Share