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How Do Sump Pumps Work?

June 17, 2016

Picture water-logged living, a life where a structure is always battling the elements. It'll be alright. The roof is waterproof and the walls are sealed. But what about the ground? Sodden land can really put the squeeze on our homes, so we install sump pumps to keep the basement dry. Simply put, the appliance protects the building from subsurface water ingress, but how does it work? It begins with a pit (sump pit) located at the lowest point of the lowest room.

Water Damage Guardians Live in the Basement

Sump pumps are designed to process water and light particulate matter. The dirty water, caused by seasonal runoff or a high water table, collects under a building and finds its way into and through the foundations. The job of the pump, therefore, is to remove this build-up before it can flood the structure, incurring expensive damage to walls, floors, and structural supports. Without it, look forward to water damaged foundations and damp conditions, an environment where fungal growths would flourish.

Don't Worry, Sump Pumps are Ever-Vigilant

Fortunately, we don't sit at a window, wait for the ground to flood, and run down to the lowest point of the building to turn on the water-removing mechanism. Instead, float switches rise with the water level. A small electrical contact is held inside the waterproof bulb, and, when the water level rises, the contacts close. An automatically operated electric motor then spins up to speed, using the volute section at the terminating end of the drive shaft to draw water out of the pit. The discharge exits the building through an installed drainage channel.

Twofold Design Characteristics

If a property manager or home owner is curious about what's taking place, they can head downstairs and see what's going on in the basement. Odds are, the pit is accompanied by either a pedestal-mounted pump or a submersible model. The up-top model draws water out of the sump pit, but the submersible form factor is located deep inside the water-filled basin. The submersible model is considered a more efficient solution due to this fact, but the pedestal type is easier to install and much easier to maintain.

A few more design aspects enter the sump basin design. For example, water ingress can be accompanied by an electrical power failure, so a backup battery pack is often added to the mix. Otherwise, natural and unnatural water migration is efficiently dealt with, water is properly discharged, and the basement is kept dry.

Parker Pumps

29B Ormond Rd., East Geelong VIC 3219

Phone: (03) 5229 7443

Email: sales@parkerpumps.com.au

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