What Size Basement Pump Do I Need for My Home?
If you fail to prepare properly for heavy rain, flooding can result in serious damage to your basement. It is ideal to use a sump pump to accomplish this, especially if you live in an area prone to frequent or flash floods. If you already have a sump pump, how can you make sure that you are adequately prepared?
First, let’s confirm what a sump pump does. It makes sure that water stays out of your basement and away from your home’s foundation by literally pumping out the water. This keeps your basement dry and free of the damage that comes along with flooding. The key, however, is having the right size sump pump. Here’s how to determine what size you need for your sump pump.
How strong your sump pump’s motor is will determine how powerful it is. There are several options when it comes to horsepower. The standard option is .33-horsepower, but there are other options, as well. Less or more power is available through the .25-hp (¼ hp), the .05 hp (½ hp)-hp and the ¾ hp.
In areas where rain is heavier and flooding occurs more often, the .5-hp or ¾ hp pump might work the best. These pumps can take out 3,000 gallons of water or more per hour. If you don’t need a larger sump pump, the .25-hp motor should work well. Keep in mind that this information should be available right on the packaging of the pump, so make sure to check it out before you purchase.
If you don’t have a sump pump, talk to your plumber to see what capacity is needed for your basement or potential flooding location.
If you already have a sump pump, here is what you can do to estimate the capacity of your sump pump. Here are the steps to follow:
- On a rainy day, run the pump until the water drops to the shutoff level.
- Unplug the pump, and leave it off for one minute.
- While the pump is off, measure how high the water rises in the sump pit during that time. Typically, a sump pit will take in around 20 gallons (20 inches) of water in one minute.
- Take the number of inches the water rose by, and multiply it by 60. That formula will allow you to estimate how much water you’re taking in over the course of an hour.
- Using the number you come up with, multiply it by 1.5. That will build in a safety factor for your pump’s capacity.
The estimate you come up with, and choosing the right motor size will definitely put you in a good position when considering a new pump. However, there are some other things to think about, as well. For instance, if you have a wider sump pit, the estimate may be off a bit. It’s also important to take a look at the height the water has to travel in order to be discharged through the discharge pipe. This is called the vertical lift, or static head. The longer the distance the water has to travel, the harder the pump will have to work.
Sump pump experts in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio
If you need some help in figuring out which sump pump is best for your home, the professional plumbers at Ohio Buckeye Plumbing can help. For recommendations and a free estimate to install or replace a sump pump in your home, talk to the pros at Ohio Buckeye Plumbing. To schedule an appointment, call (440) 283-9377.