Basement Sump Pumps
A Sump Pump Is a Permanent Solution to a Leaky Basement
Water in a basement can cause significant damage to your home and possessions. The mold and mildew that quickly grows in an environment with standing water and stagnant air can also be harmful to your family's health. With a sump pump installed in your basement, solving these problems is as easy as flipping a switch. Use this free sump pump buying guide from Home Improvement Educator to learn about different installations options and their related costs.
Installing a Sump Pump
Before installing a sump pump, it's necessary to figure out where the water is coming from and to devise a collection system. If the water is confined to one area of the basement, simply install the pump in the lowest spot in the area. If there are multiple locations where water penetrates foundation walls, however, a more elaborate system must be used to force the water to the pump. There are a couple of options to assist with this task:
- Basement Drainage Channels: The perimeter of the basement walls are dug out and replaced with drainage channels which, coupled with a main line dug out to the sump pump pit, funnel all water entering the basement to the sump pump and out of the house.
- Re-slope a Concrete Floor: Adding a few more inches of concrete to the floor abutting the perimeter walls with a gradual slope towards the center will promote water draining to the sump pump pit.
After one of the above methods has been selected (if one is needed at all), the pit that the sump pump will sit in is dug out. A type of sump pump-specific canister needs to be installed in the pit. The canister protects the sump pump from dirt and debris while still allowing water to freely flow in.
A means of expelling water from the basement must also be considered. A permanent solution is to install PVC or metal piping that extends up into the ceiling and out through the exterior wall. A simpler option is to attach a garden hose and run it through an open window.
Sump Pump Options
There are two main types of sump pumps on the market today: pedestal and submersible. For a sump pump system installed in a leaky basement, a submersible pump is recommended. Submersible sump pumps are installed in the pump pit and are activated when the water gets above a specified height. The motor is encased inside a waterproof chamber in the sump pump, allowing the unit to be immersed in water.
A pedestal pump has the motor attached to the top of the unit, making repairs easy, but it cannot offer the same water resistance that a submersible pump can. Most companies also offer a battery backup option for their pumps. This feature allows the pump to operate even in the event of power loss.
Basement Sump Pump Costs
These prices are based on national averages; actual costs will vary from state to state. The sump pump cost itself - not including installation - will vary according to the pump model and horsepower rating.
- Expect a sump pump designed for basement use to cost $50 to $300.
- Installation of a sump pump (including the sump pump pit, permanent plumbing for drain water, and electrical work) costs $500-$1,000.
- Installing basement drainage channels or other water collection systems can cost anywhere from $300 to $1,000.