How Long Do Sump Pumps Last?

A flooded basement is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Basement flooding can destroy valuables, compromise building materials, and give rise to mold and mildew growth. A sump pump can protect your home from heavy rains, melting snow, and rising waters. However, even with the best of care, it won’t last forever.

How will you know when it’s time to upgrade your sump pump? Read on to find out.

As with any appliance, a sump pump will work better and last longer if it is regularly maintained, typically between 7 and 10 years. However, failure to maintain the pump can result in rust, corrosion, clogs, leaks, and power problems that shorten the lifespan and reduce the effectiveness of the pump.

Depending on the water table and flood status in your neighborhood, your sump pump may spend most of its life dormant or be in near-constant use during the wet season. Whether yours experiences heavy or infrequent use, it should still be serviced annually. A regular inspection can catch those small problems and repair them to keep the pump in fine working order. A maintenance technician will check for rust, cracks, and leaks in the basin, drainpipes, valves, and body of the pump, along with the electrical supply and float arm mechanism. They’ll also test the alarm and battery to make sure both function properly.

Warning Signs

1. How will you know if your sump pump is acting up, or worse – needs to be replaced? Look and listen for these 8 common warning signs:

2. Loud, unusual noises can indicate worn or damaged parts or a motor nearing the end of its using life.

3. A pump that vibrates excessively while running may have a bent or damaged impeller – the component that moves the water out of the pit.

4. Infrequent sump pump usage will reduce its shelf life; test your sump pump regularly to ensure proper operation.

5. A pump that runs continuously may be due to a problem with the on/off switch or because the pump is not able to handle the water load it’s supposed to. In this case, it will likely need to be replaced.

6. If your sump pump cycles on and off frequently, it could be due to an incorrectly adjusted float switch or a short in the electrical system.

7. Visible rust can often occur from corroded battery terminals. However, it can sometimes be due to bacteria.

8. Regardless of maintenance, a sump pump won’t last forever. If yours is approaching the 7-year mark, you may want to consider replacing it before it fails when you need it most.

Added Peace of Mind

Unfortunately, sump pumps are often called into service during major storms, which is also when power outages are likely. A battery-back-up sump pump can provide extra protection should the primary one fail unexpectedly. Features to consider are the runtime of the battery as compared to the time that outages normally last in your area, the flow rate (the amount of water the pump can push in a given time), and the ease of installation. For many homeowners, a battery backup pump can make the difference between a dry basement and major water damage.

Our team of sump pump experts are here to help you prevent and eliminate basement flooding problems once and for all. If you are experiencing any kind of issue with your sump pump, would like a quote on a batter back-up sump pump, or complete new system installation, contact Pann Home Services today.