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Chaddjurg

back up sump pump

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In a recent storm, our power was lost which left no power to our sump to remove the water from the sump basket, thus flooding the basement (not a lot, but enough to be annoying). Since then I have been checking into different options for back-up pumps. I have come to three options:

1) Battery Back up - I think that these would work just fine, but an detoured from them because of their cost and also the need to purchase batteries.

2) A generator - this is also a good solution, although someone would need to be home to start the generator...we would have another wet basement if we were gone.

3) Water powered pump - a neighbor of mine has one and swears by it, they don't depend on electricity which would give me peace of mind if we were gone. I don't know too much about these and can't seem to find much about them when I try to research them. The only problem that I can tell is that if the pump would fail, you have the potential to be adding to the problem of water in your basement since the pump is powered by water (and lots of it).

I am just looking for the best option with out spending a fortune for it. Any help would be appreciated.

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I did the battery back up in my old place, it worked, in my case the the slide on the pump stuck so I had the water back up too, major damage.

Piece of advice for you and anyone else, maybe I was just unaware, if you have a sump pump get a sump pump rider on your homeowners..... lesson learned the hard way, of course the agent always could have told me too. I think it ended up being about $4-7/month extra

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I was worried about this with our recent storms. As soon as the power flashed out, I got a sinking feeling thinking about that sump pit. I just ordered [Note From Admin: Please read forum policy before posting again. Thank you.] today.

Does double duty as a jump start pack, and it also has a radio on it. Great for an emergency storm pack.

As for the water powered pumps, they're great. As you know, they don't rely on electricity, they use your home's water pressure to start a siphon. It's not really possible for them to flood your basement. The water they use goes right out the drain, just like the sump water. I'm pretty sure their failure mode is to fail "open", so the worst that happens is that it always runs, and you have a larger water bill if you don't notice it's broken, which you would if you were home. I looked into them for a bit, but in the end it was cheaper just to get a battery backup.

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I was worried about this with our recent storms. As soon as the power flashed out, I got a sinking feeling thinking about that sump pit. I just ordered [Note From Admin: Please read forum policy before posting again. Thank you.] today.

Does double duty as a jump start pack, and it also has a radio on it. Great for an emergency storm pack.

As for the water powered pumps, they're great. As you know, they don't rely on electricity, they use your home's water pressure to start a siphon. It's not really possible for them to flood your basement. The water they use goes right out the drain, just like the sump water. I'm pretty sure their failure mode is to fail "open", so the worst that happens is that it always runs, and you have a larger water bill if you don't notice it's broken, which you would if you were home. I looked into them for a bit, but in the end it was cheaper just to get a battery backup.

I hope you realize that you are never going to be able to power a sump pump with that.

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I rigged up a boat sump pump so I could put a hose on it. I can use it to get water out of the sump basket that way using a spare car battery. of course it would only work when I was around to use it, but it also only cost about $40. If I am so unlucky as to be gone from home when the power goes out and there's enough rain to get the drain tile system going then I guess that's what homeowners insurance is for.

Sanka, the Spearman is right. That rig you bought won't get you very far in an attempt to pump out the basement.

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I rigged up a boat sump pump so I could put a hose on it. I can use it to get water out of the sump basket that way using a spare car battery. of course it would only work when I was around to use it, but it also only cost about $40. If I am so unlucky as to be gone from home when the power goes out and there's enough rain to get the drain tile system going then I guess that's what homeowners insurance is for.

Sanka, the Spearman is right. That rig you bought won't get you very far in an attempt to pump out the basement.

It wouldn't be too hard to rig up a battery tender charger and a float switch. That is all the back up kits are anyway. A deep cycle would be better since a starting battery can be ruined by discharging it too far, but in an emergency I wouldn't be afraid to use it.

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An automatic bulge pump and a deep cycle battery would be a cheap and easy of an option.

Set it in the pit just above the level that the sump pump kicks in at.

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Are you hooked into city water or have a well?

If you have a well, the water powered pump wont work, because your well will be disabled along with your pressure tank if the power goes out.

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how much is this sump giong to draw on a battery? you could always do a computer type back up system that when the power goes out, the internal battery keeps the thing going. you could simply connect it right to the pack so the battery is charged while power is on and sump is powered from the 120v but when power goes, the pump is still being supplied 120 volts only by the battery back up.

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jeffreyd, that is another option but I think you'd be lucky to get an hour out of the backup power supply. Typically two 12 v1 4 amp hr batteries in series. Then there is the issue you are using the same pump the pump failed or the float.

A 500 GPH bulge pump draws 5 amps. On a 120 amp hr deep cycle you have roughly 20 hours of use. The pulse is you have the backup power but you have a small backup pump as well.

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how much is this sump giong to draw on a battery? you could always do a computer type back up system that when the power goes out, the internal battery keeps the thing going. you could simply connect it right to the pack so the battery is charged while power is on and sump is powered from the 120v but when power goes, the pump is still being supplied 120 volts only by the battery back up.

This would not be a good option. They are not made for this and the current draw would be too much to get more than a few minutes use if it worked at all.

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If you use the 12 volt boat sump and a deep cycle battery you're going to have a pretty decent amount of power. Push comes to shove you can run it off a vehicle battery and recharge it in your vehicle.

The only issue with the boat sump is that they don't have a lot of oomph. You're not going to be able to pump very much water very high. A floor drain or out a basement level garage door works fine. I don't know how well it would work if you had to lift it up and out a basement window.

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I did the automatic bulge pump and a deep cycle battery for a back up at my house, I keep my battery tender on it all summer.

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I have had 2 pumps fail on me - once the float got stuck and wouldn't activate the other time was a power outage - both happened while I was out of town. I purchased an Ace in the Hole and never looked back or had a flooded basement again. It was worth the money to know I was covered under any circumstance. The kit came with a tender so it was constantly charged.

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The Ace in the Hole is just a DC pump, not any different than a bilge pump if you get the right capacity one.

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And its got terrible reviews on Amazon, for whatever that's worth. Nothing like a backup that has a habit of failing! frown

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And its got terrible reviews on Amazon, for whatever that's worth. Nothing like a backup that has a habit of failing! frown

I don't know how good they are, but I do know that most people post on the reviews when something goes wrong, not when it go well. Why feeling is that all of the backup solutions are expensive and seem cheaply made, but if they work once, they are worth their money.

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There are alot of things online that get good reviews by customers, this is not one of them. Take it for what it is, all reviews should be taken with a grain of salt.

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Have seen this done before and it works great. If you have a floor drain cut a trench in concrete from floor drain line to sump pump. Add a Wye into the line and run it into sump pump tank. Put a trap in the sump pump so that you dont get sewer gas smell but if your pump ever goes out it will go into there and out the sewer. I Believe it is against code because they dont want you to dump your sump into sewer but for emergencies it works awesome.

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thinking about this, we use to use a 12 volt pump on a spray rig. it had a rubber impeller with garden hose fittings on each side. you could put it on a float to cut the power and cycle it on and off as needed. i guess it would be similar to a bilge pump but might last a tad longer since it is designed for a longer run period. i will see if i can locate the name and a source for you to check out. look at grainger for dayton or jabsco pumps,

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Another item that interests some of our customers that we put near the sump pits is a water alarm. This is just like a smoke detector but sits on the floor. They are about the cost of a smoke detector to. $15 to $30 on average. These wont stop water from filling up your basement but will let you know what is going on so you can try to limit the damage.

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Another item that interests some of our customers that we put near the sump pits is a water alarm. This is just like a smoke detector but sits on the floor. They are about the cost of a smoke detector to. $15 to $30 on average. These wont stop water from filling up your basement but will let you know what is going on so you can try to limit the damage.

reminds me of a deal in the cub scout book 1,000 years ago. take a 12 volt battery and an old fashioned spring clothes pin. Wrap two stripped wires around the end of the clothes pin and put one end on the battery and another end on a 12 volt door bell. Finish the circuit with the second wire to the battery. Put an aspirin between the two sides of the spring clothes pin that have the wire wrapped around them. When the aspirin disolves because of water - rain or water in your sump - the bell sounds and you're in the know. Wonder if they still sell 12 volt door bells.

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Schmoe, why even mention something that doesn't meet code? Sure, it'll work but why add more to sewage treatment when it can go out to the gutter?

Not to mention that if some inspector catches it, they'll have to fix it.

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