MOISTURE PROBLEMS ARE A MAJOR CONCERN IN BASEMENTS!
A sump pump is used to draw storm water up from low areas and discharge it into a designated drainage area, well away from the house. The water can be drained directly onto the ground surface, provided the ground level slopes downward, away from the house, or into a French Drain below the surface. The pump is installed in a pit located below floor level in the basement of the home. The pit is generally concrete, but older pits may have earthen walls. The sump pump should never drain into Municipal water lines, as they can cause severe damage if freezing occurs.
HOW THE PUMP WORKS
As storm water rises, a float switch activates the pump as the pit begins to fill. Regular maintenance is required with sump pumps, especially the floats, as they are the trigger that sets the system into operation. Many homeowners will keep an extra pump or parts on hand, as they are usually less costly to replace than to repair. Once the pump has been activated, the water is drawn up through a pipe (usually plastic), and discharged into a municipal sewer, a storm ditch or a French drain. On a property where the ground slopes away from the house, the storm water can be drained directly onto the ground. Where a high water table exists, a home owner may have an auxiliary pump which is powered by the pressure of the water in the supply plumbing. This type of pump is used in the case of an electrical failure or a malfunction of the electric pump. It can be identified by opening the water supply valve to the pump. This type of pump, referred to as an “ejector pump”, is also activated by a float valve.