Do-It-Yourself: Sump Pumps - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Do-It-Yourself: Sump Pumps

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     People will look for a water cement for their sump pumps. This a great product. This will actually set up under water, but the truth is it won't hold up under water pressure from the outside walls. For example... several years ago, I patched a hole in the wall with this, when the water came in it blew this about six feet into the basement. So stopping water pressure is quite a difficult thing. We want to get rid of the water problem and that's why we want to talk about getting a sump pump like this in our house. Many of your homes have a sump hole and all you have to do is drop the sump pump into it. And sometimes you have to start drilling through the concrete.

     Some advice from a pro is to check the depth of that concrete make sure you are not too close to the footings, you could damage the house. This is called a sump crock -- this is normally what would be in a new home, a big receptacle for your sump pump. But when you are retro fitting a house, it's kind of hard to dig down that deep and put one of those in, so quite often what we will do here at the hardware store is well someone a five gallon bucket. The sump pump fits nicely into this bucket, what you want to then is drill some holes outside the bucket. Sump pumps burn out very quickly if there is dirt getting into the bucket. The filter is on the bottom or sides so if those get full of water and sand, it will burn the pump out. So what we want to do is, when we drill those holes in the bucket, we don't do to the bottom where all the dirt is going to get in, we drill up a little so that it's just clean water getting into that sump bucket instead of dirt and muck. In here is a little mercury to turn the pump on or off. On this one, it goes straight up and down in a narrow bucket. Or in most sump holes, a float switch could get caught on the side and may not shut off, allowing the motor to burn out.

     Another problem is, everyone likes to run a garden hose from these pumps. So they will come and buy some adaptors and restrict that flow down to a 5/8 garden hose.  That will burn your pump out. It's very important that if you are going to run a sump pump with an inch and a half hose, you maintain that inch and a half flow going out.

     The other thing we will talk about is the check valve. This a one-way valve and if you don't have a check valve, all that water coming in will run into the pump hole.  Those excessive on's and off's can be very bad for the pump. What a check valve will do is allow the water to go just one way.  A little flapper in there will allow the water to shut off the pump and it can't go back into the hole. Check valve, inch and a half flow with inch and half tubing, and a good clean bucket or sump pit to keep the dirt and debris out.  These are all things you can do with a little help and knowledge.

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