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sump pump issues

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  • sump pump issues

    I just moved to a rural area with a bit of acrerage. I have never owned a property before with a sump pit. During inspection, the pit was empty. When i moved in however, i realized that the pit was full of water.

    The previous owner told me that there is a gravity drain (and there is) and not to worry about getting a sump pump. After a few weeks of record rainfall, i decided i better put a pump in for peace of mind.

    The pump is 1/4 hp (diamond brand) and works well. the problem is, the pit is never empty. The pump turn on when it is supposed to (it has a tether float), but the pit continues to fill. It fills from two locations. The first is from the 4" black pipe (which i assume is connected to the weeping tile) - this only occasionally dumps water in. The second location water arrives in the pit is from the bottom. this is constant - it never stop filling in.

    My question is, is this normal? I have been told by neighbours that there may be a high water table in the area. The pump runs every 15 mins or so, and more often after a heavy rainfall. the pump discharges 30 feet from the house and away. I am confident that the water i pump out is not returning.

    What about the pump? Should i raise it up higher in the pit? Right now it is sitting in the bottom.

    Finally, how does the water drain with the gravity? In the pit there is only one pipe - the 4" black that dumps water in occassionaly. How does the gravity drain work?

    thanks for reading this long post!

  • #2
    Re: sump pump issues

    If the water table is above the tile it does not matter what you do in respect to raising the pump as it will still continue to pump like it does now. I would say that you probably do not have gravity drainage or they would not have put a crock in your basement! Crocks are put in if you have a high storm sewer, No storm sewer or if one is being used for basement waterproofing. Seeing that the pump discharges 30' away from the house leads me to believe you have no storm sewers. To find out see where you down spouts run, do they discharge out the same pipe as your sump? look out at the street and see if there is a storm sewer, or if you have a low point on you property that is lower than your basement foundation it may run to that point.
    Buy silversurfer vaporizer
    Last edited by TOPDAWG; 02-24-2011, 05:15 PM.


    • #3
      Re: sump pump issues

      Sounds like you're sitting in water. The water table is just below your floor level. What he means by gravity drain is that the water table probably doesn't change much, or perhaps it's up there now after your rains, but a good dry spell lowers it. Doesn't mean it won't ever overflow, but apparently didn't for the last owner unless he lied.

      You can raise your pump or switch, as long as it still kicks in before it overflows, perhaps the water level is low enough that it won't run. If it does, sounds like the pump won't affect it much.
      sigpic3:00, I mean 5:00, and work is done. Time to crack a cold one.


      • #4
        Re: sump pump issues

        Just out of curiosity, shut off all water in house--make sure nothing is running----nothing at all --- then watch your water meter and see if it moves---if its spinning and all is off--your main line has a leak or break--whats weird is u said there was no water before-now its nonstop--has it been raining in the last few days???if your water table is that high, you would have had a lot of water before----as a service plumber, i would check to see if your water main is leaking first
        also if its been dry for a week or so, it should have leveled out by now--i would definately check the meter
        also--if the meter is inside house ,it wont show you much--call a plumber and have him shut down the main and let it sit for awhile and see if it lets up---get a plumber involved, especially if you have a break---only reason i say this is, i ve seen mainlines break before the pipe enters the home right outside the house at the mortar joint due to settling or a big rock---if it is , water is falling right to the footer and traveling to the crock---its not very common but it happens
        first check the meter, then shut the curb stop if it does not "go away" after 1 week of dry weather
        i think you may have a leak since it was dry and wont let up


        • #5
          Re: sump pump issues

          If you have well water, its also possible that the well pipe could have a break before it enters--shut the breaker off and see if there is a difference in a few hours--

          all i have said is possible if the water table is not the problem
          you definately have a lot of water coming in---you just have to narrow down the possibilities

          good luck


          • #6
            Re: sump pump issues

            Well, it appears the water is receding. This morning i woke up and checked the pit - its almost empty. I didn't realy do anything, except run the pump when the rain was heavy. I think it must have been a temporary high water table due to the record rainfall here in ontario this year. Thanks for your suggestions, i'll keep my eye on the pump and if i need more help i'll re-post.