Battery backup sump pumps

Posted Mar 31, 2021 in Waterproofing, Sump Pump Solutions


You may not know it, but your sump pump could be the dif­fer­ence between a dry and wet base­ment or crawl space when heavy rains hit. As a quick reminder, house­hold sump pumps:

  1. Are installed in the low­est part of a base­ment or crawlspace;
  2. Pump ground­wa­ter away from your home’s foun­da­tion so the base­ment or crawl­space stays dry;
  3. Are typ­i­cal­ly fed by a base­ment water­proof­ing sys­tem, french drains, or nat­ur­al migra­tion of ground­wa­ter through the soil.

Adding a bat­tery back­up sump pump to your home means bet­ter pro­tec­tion against flood­ing and peace of mind dur­ing times of heavy rains and pow­er out­ages. Is a back­up sump pump right for your home?

If a heavy thun­der­storm knocks out your elec­tric­i­ty, your pri­ma­ry sump pump is unable to oper­ate. This is where a bat­tery back­up comes in. A basic bat­tery back­up sys­tem con­sists of a bat­tery and a sec­ondary, back­up pump. Many fea­ture alarms and charg­ers to ensure the bat­tery stays at a full charge.

There are many fac­tors to take into con­sid­er­a­tion when decid­ing on your bat­tery back­up sys­tem. Here are a few of the biggest factors.

  1. Mon­i­tor your sump pump to see if you detect a big dif­fer­ence in activ­i­ty dur­ing heavy rain­fall. Does it have trou­ble keep­ing up?
  2. Are pow­er out­ages com­mon in your area? Even if they aren’t, a bat­tery back­up can still ensure back­up in the rare instance the pri­ma­ry pump does lose pow­er. Think of it as insur­ance” for your pri­ma­ry sys­tem. You might not think you need it until the lights go out and the rain starts seep­ing in!
  3. Is your pri­ma­ry pump con­stant­ly run­ning? Depend­ing on the water table in an area, some homes have pumps that seem to run all the time. If your pump is one of these, you may want to think about a bat­tery sys­tem for peace of mind in case the sump pump malfunctions.
  4. Some home­own­er insur­ance poli­cies have sump pump rid­ers avail­able as add-ons, which offer addi­tion­al cov­er­age in case of a flood or leak. How­ev­er, these rid­ers often require a bat­tery back­up sump pump to be in place.

What should your back­up sump pump sys­tem include?

There are a num­ber of options on the mar­ket – so where do you begin? Here are some quick tips on under­stand­ing the basics of the sys­tem, com­par­ing fea­tures and select­ing the right one.

  • If your base­ment has a liv­ing space, you may pre­fer a sub­mersible pump as opposed to a pedestal pump. Sub­mersible pumps allow you to put a lid on the pit which reduces noise and keeps out any debris. The lid will also help keep mois­ture con­tained and pre­vent it from being released into the home.
  • Pumps are built out of either plas­tic or cast iron. Plas­tic pumps get the job done and are more afford­able, but cast iron is often pre­ferred for its much greater reli­a­bil­i­ty and dura­bil­i­ty. Cast iron also helps dis­si­pate heat to the sur­round­ing water, which length­ens the life of the pump.
  • Mechan­i­cal switch­es, instead of pres­sure switch­es, are pre­ferred. A sol­id float can ensure the switch can’t become water­logged, fail to switch off and it’ll burn out.
  • Com­bi­na­tion pack­ages with two or three pumps are also available.
  • Pump­ing capac­i­ty and out­put of the sec­ondary pump can play an impor­tant role. If you go with a small­er sec­ondary pump with less pump­ing capac­i­ty, and the pow­er does go out, the back­up sys­tem ren­ders essen­tial­ly use­less. Most pri­ma­ry pumps have an out­put of 35 – 60 gal­lons per minute. Make sure your sec­ondary pump can pump an equiv­a­lent amount of water!
  • If seek­ing a pro­fes­sion­al instal­la­tion, con­sid­er the war­ran­ty on sump pumps offered by dif­fer­ent water­proof­ing con­trac­tors. In the case of an issue or mal­func­tion, hav­ing a rep­utable and respon­sive ser­vice depart­ment is just as impor­tant as the length of the warranty.

If you are inter­est­ed in back­ing up your pri­ma­ry sump pump sys­tem with a bat­tery back­up sump pump, con­tact the water­proof­ing experts at Fam­i­ly Water­proof­ing Solu­tions today (708) 330‑4466 to dis­cuss the best options for your home.

What our customers say

  • We con­tract­ed Fam­i­ly Water­proof­ing Solu­tions for exte­ri­or wall seal­ing and foun­da­tion crack repair ser­vices. Ken was very thor­ough in explain­ing the work that would be done, and his crew did a great job. This busi­ness was a plea­sure to work with.

    Stacie T.
  • Work­man­ship and ser­vice were excel­lent. Would rec­om­mend with­out reservation.

  • You and your crew did a great job in our base­ment and crawl­space. You went the extra mile to insure that all of our water seep­age prob­lems are over. We would rec­om­mend you high­ly to oth­er peo­ple. Your qual­i­ty and time­ly work out­match­es all the others.