Creating Lasting Repairs

Worried About Winter Flooding? 4 Steps To Test Your Sump Pump

by Marvin Gilbert

If you live in a flood zone, and you use a sump pump as part of your waterproofing system, now's the time to get it up and ready for winter. The last thing you want to deal with is a flooded basement because your sump pump wasn't up and running efficiently. To make sure your sump pump is problem-free this winter, here are four simple steps you should take while the weather is clear.

Give it a Test Run

There's no way of telling how well your sump pump is going to work this winter, without giving it a test run during the summer. First, make sure your pump is plugged in. You don't want to call the repair technician only to find that your pump wasn't connected to its power source. Next, turn the power on to your sump pump and fill the water basin. If your pump starts up and begins removing water from the fill container, your sump pump is working well. However, if it doesn't begin pumping the water out after a few seconds, you've got problems. It's time to call the repair technician.

Clean Out the Gunk

The next thing you'll need to do is give your sump pump a thorough cleaning. Grease and gunk can get stuck inside the pump, which can prevent your pump from working properly. The first thing you'll need to do is unplug the pump. This will prevent you from getting a shock when you start cleaning the pump. Next, remove the pump from it's water basin, and remove the gunk that's attached to the exterior of the pump, and the blades.

Clear the Intake Valve

Once you've cleaned the pump, and removed the gunk, you'll need to clear the intake valve. The water port can get clogged with debris such as lint, dirt, and even leaves. Remove the hose to expose the intake valve. Use a pipe cleaner, or small toothbrush to get inside the intake valve. Rinse the brush often to make sure the valve is thoroughly cleaned. Replace the valve hose, and place the pump back into the water basin.

Check the Water Flow

The last thing you'll need to check is the water flow. That's the direction the water will take once it's removed from your basement. If the drain pipe is pointed towards your home, you're going to experience a secondary flood when the water flows back into your basement. To avoid that problem, make sure the drain pipe is pointed away from your home, and that the incline of the soil allows the water to flow away from your home.

Don't risk flood damage this winter. Use the tips provided here to make sure your sump pump is ready for winter. If you identify problems with your pump, contact a handyman service like WeBe Works as soon as possible.