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Sump pump basin depth question

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  • Sump pump basin depth question

    Hello! I have already read most threads that discuss this issue but I have not found the answer, so here's my question:

    I purchased my first house last year that has a finished basement. There is a very old sump pump in the basement sitting in a 5 gallong bucket (14 inch deep x 12 inch wide) underground. The top of the bucket is about 2 inches from the bottom of the concrete floor. I took the old pump out and have been draining the pit every day with a wet vac to see how much water accumulates, at what rate and up to what level. It has not rained in the last few days (maybe weeks) and currently it takes up to 24 hours for the pit to fill up to 12 inches, so it seems the 12 inch mark is probably the normal water table in the area at this time. I do wonder why it takes 24 hours for the water to get this high, though?

    Anyway, I am trying to replace the pump and also increase the size of the pit at the same time. I can see why increasing the width/diameter will help reduce the pump cycle frequency but why does it have to be any deeper than it currently is as 14 inches? I mean, if I want to maintain the water level at 12 inch in the bucket I already have to lift the sump pump 3 inches - it's a ridgid 1/2 hp with vertical float that kicks in at 9 inches and off at 3 inches. So, it makes no sense to me to dig a deeper pit. Actually, I wonder if I should make it 3 inches shallower so I don't have to lift the pump?

    Bit more info. There are no basement drain tiles or pipes that I can see, just a layer of gravel beneath the concrete floor. Water is basically coming in from the holes in the bucket. The first 5-6 inches of water fill in pretty fast and then it slows down and fills up to 12 inches over 25 hours. We had about 3 inches of water in the basement few months ago when it rained really bad for days and the sump pump did not work. I am also going to add a backup sump pump as my next project.

    I would appreciate some advice...