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How Does A Battery Backup Sump Pump Work?
How a battery backup sump pump works is revealed in its name. It is an independent sump pump that sits in a pit and relies on a battery to run it. It activates when its float rises to the preset ON height which causes the switch circuit to close and release power current from its battery to provide the necessary power to pump water from the sump pit. The battery backup sump pump acts as a backup pump for the primary sump pump when it fails.
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Listen to the sound of a battery backup sump pump in operation.
Five Key Components Needed To Make A Backup Sump Pump Work
The battery backup sump pump works when five key components are present: 1) The float and switch 2) The battery 3) The battery charger 4) The pump and 5) The controller.
The float raises as the water rises until it reaches its ON position. When in the ON position, the switch circuit closes and battery power flows to the pump and causes the pump impeller to swirl water from the pit through the attached discharge pipe to its intended destination. Usage of battery power eventually depletes the battery. The controller provides status updates regarding the batteries charge and its system. When electricity is available, the battery charger restores the battery from its depleted state to a full charge state.
How A Battery Backup Sump Pump Works Dos And Don’ts
- Do use a check valve with it. A check valve makes the pump more efficient and eliminates the need to re pump water that falls backwards down the discharge pipe when the sump stops running.
- Do make sure the right sized battery backup sump pump is installed. Battery backup sump pumps are not measured by horse power; therefore it is important to know how much GPM (gallons per minute) is pumped by the primary sump pump so a comparable pumping performance battery backup sump pump is installed. After a battery backup sump pump must be capable of keeping up with the water during a heavy rainstorm if the power goes out. GPM ranges from 15 GPM to 37 GPM.
- Do estimate how long the electricity could be out so the battery backup sump pump installed can handle the right sized battery group size and Amp hours. Not all battery backup sump pumps use the same size battery. If long battery run times are required,backup systems like Zoeller and Basement Watchdog are built to handle two same size batteries connected in parallel so the run time is doubled.
- Do remember, battery backup sump pumps can be installed in-line above a primary sump pump if the sump basin is small.
- Do decide if self-testing is an important feature for your battery backup sump pump. Not all battery backup sump pump models perform self-testing. Self-testing is a very helpful feature because it is too easy to forget about the battery backup sump pump until it is needed.
- Do decide if Wi-Fi connectivity is important. Receiving notifications by mobile phone that the primary pump failed and the battery backup pump is running is convenient when away from home.
- Don't use a battery backup sump pump as the only sump pump in the basin. It is not built for heavy, day after day use like a primary sump pump.
- Don't wait until your basement floods during a power outage to determine that a backup sump pump is necessary. Time, potential mold growth, and loss of personal property is too costly when a flooded basement occurs.
Common Questions On How A Battery Backup Sump Pump Works
How long will a battery backup last for sump pump?
Most battery backup sump pump systems will last for 6 to 8 hours if running continuously. If running intermittently a battery backup pump could run for three days or more. Doubling the run time is possible with the Zoeller and Basement Watchdog backup sump pump. The battery itself lasts 3 to 5 years before needing replacement. AGM batteries can last 8 years though the price point is much higher.
Is a battery backup sump pump worth it?
A battery backup sump pump is worth it if cleaning up from a flooded basement will take time, cause loss of appliances and personal property, result in frustration, and cause potential mold growth and health issues.
How do I backup my sump pump when power goes out?
There are three options available: 1) Battery backup sump pump 2) Water powered backup sump pump 3) Power Station, also known as a power inverter which converts battery power to AC power and runs an electric pump.
Which is better, battery backup or water powered sump pumps?
Which backup pump type is better depends upon your water pumping needs and where your house is located.
A water powered sump pump that has no batteries and can run endlessly as long as city water is available sounds like the perfect solution. However water powered sump pumps only work with city water, the water pressure must be at least 40 PSI, pounds per square inch, and the GPM is low compared to battery backup sump pumps. A water powered sump pump's GPM is lower than most one-third horse power primary pumps and the most common sized primary sump pump used is one-third horse power.
Battery backup pumps require more maintenance. A lead acid battery lasts only three to five years and an AGM battery lasts around eight years. Plus a fully charged battery has limited run time. Some manufacturers design their backup pumps to accommodate multiple batteries hooked in parallel. There is no perfect solution. The best solution is based on your water pumping needs.
How much does it cost to put in a battery backup sump pump?
The cost to install a sump pump battery backup depends on the cost of the battery backup sump pump system itself and the labor to install it. The average cost of the backup pump system is $300 to $700, the cost of a deep cycle marine battery is $150 to $300. Hiring a plumber to install it can cost $400 to $700.
A do-it-yourself handy homeowner can install a backup system using videos and the manufacture's installation manual. For those home owners less experienced, it may be smart to have a plumber put the first one in and then you can install replacement pumps when necessary.