Maintaining your sump pump is not a large job – it is so small, in fact, it’s easy to overlook. The consequences of sump pump failure can be huge and as a result it is recommended that you maintain your sump pump at least once per year, ideally during spring. Spring thaw is when the sump pump is really put to work!
Here is a sump pump maintenance checklist:
- Make sure your primary pump is connected to power and turned on. If your pump is plugged into an outlet rather than hard-wired, make sure the ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) on the outlet has not been tripped.
- Test your pump for functionality by pouring a bucket of water into the sump pit. The pump should turn on automatically and pump the water away in seconds. Sump pumps use a float to detect water, and this float can become stuck due to dirt and sediment. If your pump is powered on but doesn’t start pumping during the test, try to loosen the float before calling for service.
- Disconnect and clean the pump. Disconnect the pump from its power source and discharge line. Remove the pump from the pit and carefully clean all accessible parts of dirt, sediment and small stones. If possible, remove the grate at the bottom of the pump and clean it separately. If the sump pit is messy, clean up the area while you have the pump removed. Model-specific instructions on how to clean a sump pump may be helpful and easily found online, but most pumps can be safely cleaned with a garden hose, paper towels and a stiff-bristle brush.
- Check the pump’s discharge line for obstructions. Small particles usually flow through, but sometimes small rocks get wedged in the pump, grate or discharge line where they can inhibit the flow of water.
- Perform model-specific maintenance to the battery backup system as needed. Again, this is easily available online.
If you have any concerns or want a service call placed to ensure your home’s sump pump is ready for spring, give Vigor Mechanical Ltd a call at 780-489-9939.