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5 Warning Signs Your Sump Pump May Fail

5 Warning Signs Your Sump Pump May Fail

A functioning, and reliable sump pump is a basement’s best friend. When your sump pump is in proper working order, it removes excess groundwater that may otherwise cause flooding and harmful moisture build-up in your basement. When a sump pump fails, results can range from a wet basement floor to floods, mold, and damage to your home.

Below are just a few indicators that your sump pump may not be up to the task of keeping your basement dry.

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Nonstop Operation

Does your sump pump run too frequently (or continuously) regardless of weather conditions? If this sounds familiar, the pump motor may be in danger of burning out. Three major causes of an overworked sump pump are:

  1. Sump pump is the wrong size

Biggest is not always best when it comes to getting the right sump pump for your home. An undersized sump pump may not be big enough to keep up with demand. If your sump pump is too large, and your sump pit too small, your pit will fill too fast and trigger the sump pump to work even harder.

  1. Float switch is stuck

The float switch is a critical part of your system that engages the sump pump. Always keep this switch unobstructed by debris with plenty of room to move freely.

  1. Check valve is broken or missing

Your check valve ensures that water flows out, and not back into the pit. If the check valve is not working, your pump may be working overtime.

No Water in Sump Pit

A sump pit is a hole, usually with gravel at the bottom, that has been dug in the lowest part of your basement. Water collects here and is drained away by the sump pump.
If your sump pump is running, but there’s no water in the pit, odds are that it’s not connected to your drainage system correctly. The best thing to do is have a professional inspect your drainage system.

Loud, Irregular Noises

Most sump pumps do make sounds when working. However, loud rattling, grinding, gurgling, and clunking noises are signs that something is wrong. Those noises may indicate issues with the motor. Caught early enough, defective motors can be replaced—which is much more cost-effective than replacing the entire system.

Clogs or Blockage

An uncovered sump pit will collect dirt and debris over time. Objects can fall into the pit and clog the pump’s mechanics or obstruct the drain line. Either situation can cause your sump pump to operate inefficiently or shut down completely.

Today, open sump pits are not common. However, if your home system is uncovered put an airtight lid in place to keep contaminants out of your sump system.

Old Age

As with any mechanical device, parts get old and worn. Motors fail over time. The average life expectancy of a sump pump is seven to ten years. Of course, there are contributing factors to your sump pump’s longevity, including:

  1. Frequency of use
  2. How far the pump has to divert water to discharge
  3. Quality of system
  4. Maintenance

If you suspect you’re reaching the end of the road with your sump pump, have it inspected by a professional.

When it comes to keeping your basement and its contents dry, your expert Horizon plumbing team delivers over 30 years of A+ rated experience. Call us any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to solve your sump pump issues. Our work is backed by industry-leading warranties, and our own 100% Satisfaction Guarantee! Call today, and we’re on our way!