Our Sump Pump Reviews – 2016
If you’ve ever experienced flooding during the rainy season, a sump pump will be a valuable asset. Investing in a sump pump will save you a lot of money from the damage water can cause. But there are many different types, models, and specifications for these pumps and it can be tough to identify exactly what you need for your home or premises.
To start with, the Pedestal sump pumps and submersible and portable units are some of the most common options available. Their reviews, along with many others, are covered within this website. So, if you are considering purchasing a backup sump pump, check below to see some pointers on the different types of sump pumps available, as well as, the features and elements that the best sump pumps have in common.
Our Sump Pump Buyer’s Guide
If you stay in a dry environment that does not get engulfed with water, you may not need a sump pump. However, if you reside in a waterlogged environment and have the need to constantly keep water out of your building, a sump pump will be of great use to you. They are perfect for houses built on low-lying or flat areas and for areas that experience heavy rain. But before you go out to buy a sump pump, there are several things you need to consider. There are different types of sump pumps for different drainage tasks. Below are certain things you need to know before selecting a sump pump for your needs.
Submersible or pedestal sump pumps?
First, you need to decide whether you want a submersible pump or a pedestal pump. In accordance with our buyer’s guide – submersible pumps sit in the water most of the time and are suitable for areas with high flooding. But pedestal pumps are less expensive and are usually kept above the water level. Pedestal pumps last longer than submersible pumps because they spend most of their time out of the water, unlike the submersible pump. And if you need a portable unit (then go with portable!).
- On Pedestal sump pumps the motor and pump are out of the water or sump pit. This can be advantageous if you need to troubleshoot the pump because you have direct access to the motor and pump. Pedestal models can be a cost-effective option and often last longer since they’re easier to repair (because they’re not in the sump).
- Submersible sump pumps it in the sump pit and is a great option if you want the pump hidden from sight in your basement. They will typically be higher flow rate models as they require less suction head to draw the water into the pump. Because the pump is in the sump itself, the motor and associated instrumentation need to be waterproof. Submersible sump pumps can be quieter than pedestal sump pumps and are easier to install, but can be more expensive in the same duty class.
What You’ll Need – Sump Pump Instructions
You will need a few things to ensure that you can properly install one.
- A power source– to power the pump when required. Some models have a backup battery, i.e. they can run if you have a power blackout.
- A sewerage system– this is where the water that’s filling up the sump will be pumped to. If you don’t have access to sewerage facilities at your premises, you will need to find an alternate location to pump the water to.
- A sump– this is where the sump pump will draw the water from, it needs to be a certain depth and occasionally will need to be cleaned out. You can find some more details on basement waterproofing here…
How to choose Your Sump Pump
It’s best to look at your circumstances in order to determine which sump pump will be the best option for your needs.
Estimate the potential water flow – Your sump pump needs to be able to perform in any worst case scenario (storm, flood, mains water pipe leakage, taps left on…) – you don’t want to purchase a sump pump only to find that it pumps at a slower rate than the water fills up!
Check the ‘head’ that’s required (the pressure)
Decide on a budget – Ordinarily, your first step would be to decide on a budget, but in order to choose the correct sump pump – you have to ensure that the flow rate of the unit is adequate first and then look at the different options. Another consideration you need to take into account is the ‘head’ required, especially in a scenario where you can’t connect the sump pump outlet to a sewerage service. Your budget for a sump pump should be in the vicinity of $60-$500, excluding installation. You do get what you pay for – but we aren’t necessarily recommending the most expensive options. But the better brands and models typically last longer and have better service support as well as a few extra features. In general, a better quality sump pump will cost you less in the long run.
- Why will a better quality sump pump cost me less?– There are a couple of reasons for this. We will summarise the main ones here: To start with, the unit will last longer – which means it will need to be replaced less frequently. A better quality unit will also break down less, requiring less maintenance. A better sump pump will also have a higher specification motor that will use less power. There are other benefits as well – such as service and availability of parts and safety.
Which type of Backup Sump Pump to choose
Basically, the type of sump pump you buy will depend largely on your water needs and the place of instalment. There are both primary and backup sump pumps. Primary sump pumps operate on electricity and it is important that you have one of these. But when you stay in an area where there are power outages, getting a battery backup sump pump will be a big advantage.
These combine both the primary sump pump and its battery backup process. This type of sump pump comes in handy in situations of flooding while having a power outage. With a battery backup sump pump, you can be assured that your sump pump will keep working at its full capacity to keep water out when the primary pump is overwhelmed by the level of the flood that enters the basin. One of the things you need to check with a battery backup sump pump is the rate at which it can pump in an outage and how long the battery will last for without the pump being connected to the main power. Then do some calculations on what your safety factor would be in case of an emergency.
Some backup sump pumps are powered by a battery while others are powered by water. Battery powered types are not the best option when you anticipate a lengthy power outage. You will be better off making use of a water powered option in this case.
Primary Pedestal and Submersible Backup Sump Pumps
These are the most common backup sump pumps and can be found in many homes. They are highly valued since they prevent flooding by pumping seepage water. If you are looking for a pump device that has the capacity to pump several thousand gallons of water per hour, these pumps can do the job effectively, keeping your home dry and safe. Both types of pumps are effective, but the difference lies in safety, longevity, and cost. The submersible sump pumps are safer but more expensive while the pedestal sump pumps last longer because they are always at the surface and not submerged in water.
Sewerage Sump Pump Reviews
These pumps have a different design than the traditional sump pumps. Their main purpose is the removal and transfer of sewage from the home to a septic tank. However, they can be used for drawing out water as well. Their main job is to transfer solids, and you should not be going for this type of pump if your intention is to use it for the removal of water. Once they are installed, they run automatically without any operational assistance. Sewage backup sump pumps have a lower volumetric flow, but as stated, can handle grit and solids if required. If you have a spare one you could use it for a sump pump application. That being said, we wouldn’t recommend combining your sewage waste transfer with your sump pumping – using the same unit as the suction head can be an issue. This means multiple lines to draw from as well.
What do the best-rated sump pumps have in common?
The best sump pumps are usually able to lift water over 10 feet. Their pressure capacity (head) is designed to help you transfer water over fences and walls. This is particularly important in applications where you use the sewage system to dispose of excess water in your basement or sump. Depending on the efficiency of the pump, you’ll see that the higher the horsepower, the higher the gallons per hour removed in general. Choose an automatic sump pump if you’re not always around to manually drain out water when your basement is waterlogged. According to many reviews and buying guides, Wayne sump pumps and Zoeller sump pumps are some of the more well-recommended automatic sump pumps. If the amount of water that needs removal is very high and you are certain you will be home when the flooding occurs (predictable) a manual sump pump will be adequate. Many of these models are designed to have more horsepower than other types of sump pumps. Some features that all good backup sump pumps have in common are float switches for automatic start and stop, motor overload trip protection, low water flow pump protection and battery backup in case of loss of power. Manual override is also important when you want to draw down water levels manually, for example, if you are cleaning out a sump pit.
Overall, the best-rated sump pumps have resistant housing materials and outperform others in terms of effectiveness and lifespan of the machine. Whenever you are looking for the best sump pump for your basement,consider these features and you’ll be sure to get the right product that can help you effectively keep your basement safe and free from water. We hope you find our pedestal and submersible sump pump reviews helpful and wish you all the best in finding the finest product for your home, basement or application.
Sump Pump Technical Specifications
The degree of flooding in your basement determines the strength of the sump pump you select. If your house witnesses a great deal of flooding, it would be more ideal to purchase a pump with greater horsepower. For an average basement water pump, the pumping power of 1/4 to 1/2 Horsepower should be enough. But those residing in flooded areas would need higher ratings. However, the most important criterion here is the GPM (gallons per minute) and not the power of the motor itself as there are many factors that result in the specific flow of a sump pump. These factors include motor rpm (revolutions per minute), pump volumetric displacement, the type of pump, and pipe sizes used. The motor’s job is to supply enough torque for it to run at the desired RPM without tripping on overload.
The head pressure (suction head requirement) is also very important. It entails the vertical height the pump can be placed at and still able to draw water. Usually, the ideal head pressure ranges from 20 to 40 feet. The type of pump you choose should be able to provide you with the required pump speed when placed at your specified pumping position.
The brand of sump pump you choose is also important. Some leaders in the market include Utilitech, Liberty, Wayne (OEM site here..), and Zoeller pumps. Some brands like Campbell Hausfeld and the Liberty Pumps are more concerned with the water powered backup pumps while other brands such as Wayne and Zoeller specialize in battery backups. So, depending on the type of water pumping you need, the brand you select is as vital as any other criteria for selecting the ideal type of sump pump.
Warranty and Installation Advice
Any good and dependable product should have a warranty of more than one year and the installation costs should be reasonable. Most good sump pump brands, such as Zoeller, have warranties that fall between 1 and 3 years. A warranty gives you the confidence and assurance that the product was made without any defect, and even if there is one, you are guaranteed repair or replacement without any additional cost.
Which type of Sump Pump Switch should you buy?
Sump pump buying guides will tell you that switches come in a wide range of types, including mercury, diaphragms, and float switches. All of these are good options, but make sure you select an automatic switch that won’t give you a lot of problems. It’s also very handy in a ‘backup’ arrangement. An automatic switch turns on the sump pump whenever floodwater begins to creep into your home, whether you are at home or not. With a manual switch, you can only turn on the pump by yourself, which makes it useless when you are away and your basement begins to flood. Also, the pump gets more protection from burning out because of the automatic switch.
Go for sump pumps that have a capacity switch to ensure hassle-free operation. This switch will help you automatically turn the machine on or off in order to complete the task. The switch is designed with a microprocessor which determines the water level in the sump basin. It turns the sump pump on when the water reaches a preset level and turns it off when it goes down.
Sump Pump Materials and Parts
The materials used in making the sump pump are equally important. Look for parts that will not corrode such as stainless steel, alloy, or cast bronze. Always avoid sheet metal because their regular contact with water could easily lead to corrosion.
Always choose a sump pump that’s been made with high-quality materials. A good material will not only work more effectively but will also ensure that your sump pump lasts for a very long time. The toughest materials are the ones made of specially engineered PVC, thermoplastics, and cast iron. These are the most durable materials and are corrosion resistant. The impeller should be made of plastic or metal, but metal or alloy types are usually the best.
There are some really good tips on things to look out for with a sump pump in this short video here..
Finally, before you decide on a particular sump pump, take note of the height of the lift as it measures the pressure to remove water when the pump is placed vertically. The most common pumps out there are made for up to 10 feet of lift. You also need to measure the area where the pump needs to sit to find out how many gallons it can hold. This and the other considerations above will help you select an ideal sump pump to enable you to effectively discharge the water in your basement.
- The buying guide at comis a handy reference
- Plumber surplus have some excellent tips in a buyer’s guide here..
How to find the best sump pump brands?
A Sump pump is mandatory if you’re living in a low or flat area or if it snows/ rains a lot. You run the risk of your basement flooding, which can damage your property and can result in several other health and property risks. You should consider this system even if there are occasional threats of basement flooding such as during a hurricane. You should take the best sump pump brands into consideration when looking to make a purchase. There are many and the brand you choose should be serving you seamlessly for a number of years to come.
What are the best brands for sump pump products?
The best sump pump brands always go the extra mile to satisfy their customers. However, there are certain basic things that all the best sump pump brands should offer. Any manufacturer which isn’t capable of maintaining and fulfilling the basic requirements cannot be labelled as the BEST. The following are some of the basic things which all the best brands must ensure to offer:
- Their products avoid any loosening of plaster or any breakage of paint. Furthermore, there shouldn’t be any cracks in the walls of the basement after installation.
- They should ensure no dampness on the floor or on the walls, which could result in the development of fungus and algae giving rise to unhygienic conditions at home.
- There shouldn’t be any reduction in the temperature through damp walls, which may result in several health conditions such as flu, cough or fever.
- The product should maintain and secure the foundation of the property by not letting any unwanted water stay behind.
- The sump pumps should work to avoid any rust on metallic pipes through the dampness in the walls, which may lead to some leakage.
- The product should perform exceptionally well in severe conditions such as heavy snow, heavy rainfall, flooding and hurricanes etc.
Pump Brands – considering the technical aspects:
There are some technical aspects the best brands should address. The following is a brief description of all the main features:
- Motor – They should use only the best centrifugal motor, which should be able to sustain a heavy water load in case of severe conditions.
- Impeller – This is a fan like structure that is associated with the motor of the pump. It must be durable as it’s responsible for producing the centrifugal force by rotating.
- Discharge –This is a cylindrical tube with open ends on both sides, which helps with funnelling the water that goes into the discharge pipe.
- Discharge pipe –Commonly, manufacturers use ordinary garden hoses or copper pipes. But the best brands would always go for PVC pipes due to their durability and corrosion avoidance capability.
Pick a sump pump that you like, from a brand that you trust and have it installed. We like to say that if you do your research upfront then you can rest assured that the sump pump will take care of business and you won’t have any issues.