A sump pump in Garland helps to reduce the risk of your basement flooding in our area, which is unfortunately prone to this issue. Your pump is usually inactive, waiting for your home to need it. When heavy rains occur, this water starts to overly saturate the soil around your home. When the water seeps into the house and flows into the pit that contains the pump, it activates. The pump channels the water outside to a nearby dry well, storm drain, or detention pond and continues to run as long as there is water surrounding the unit.
Common Sump Pump Problems
You want to ensure regular maintenance of your sump pump so that you can avoid many of the common problems that may occur. However, being aware of these issues can also help you to know when to call in a professional.
There are several sump pump issues that Garland homeowners should know about:
- Gassy odors emitted by the pump
- Electricity loss
- Worn-out pump
- Stuck switches
- Clogged discharge lines
- Missing or broken check valve
- Incorrect installation
How Often Do You Need Sump Pump Maintenance?
The general recommendation is once a year for sump pump maintenance. However, if a major storm or any flooding hits the Garland area and causes your sump pump to work hard, you might call a professional to take a look and make sure it is still in good working order.
You should check your backup battery at least once a month to ensure that you are prepared for a storm. You can do this by making sure that it has a full charge. Since your sump pump likely runs on electricity, you will need this battery if the power goes out.
Routine Homeowner Maintenance Tasks
Routine maintenance helps to ensure that your sump pump lasts for as long as possible. It is best to have a professional do the maintenance since they have the right tools and know exactly what to do to keep your pump in good working order. When you call to schedule the service, there are a few things you want to know so that they can prepare for the servicing. The first is the approximate age of your pump and whether there have been past repairs. The second is if you are noticing any current issues that you need them to diagnose as part of the maintenance process.
When the pump is not in use, keep a cover over the area. This will prevent lint, sediment, and debris from getting into the pit. By doing this, you are helping to keep the pump and the pit clear so that you don’t have to rush to do this when a major storm hits. However, if you do use a cover, remember to remove it before the rain starts.
Professional Annual Maintenance Tasks
Once a plumber arrives, they will start by turning off the pump. If you have a washer or other appliances that drain into the pit, you will not be able to use these when they are performing the maintenance.
They will rinse out the pump and then scrape it. This will ensure the removal of any caked debris. Lastly, they will clean out the pit, usually using a wet vacuum. They will examine the inlet screen at the pump’s base. This is a filter that reduces the risk of pump damage by not allowing debris to get into the pump. Scrubbing away debris accumulation is usually enough to get it clean.
During a maintenance service, they will look at the discharge line. This is important because it can clog and make it difficult for your pump to get the water out. If there is a blockage, they can often take care of it during the appointment. They might check the pump bearings if the manufacturer recommends it. In some cases, you need to occasionally lubricate these to keep them working properly.
The GFCI receptacle must be in good working order to keep your pump running, as this is its electricity source. The technician will usually look at the area where the GFCI is and evaluate how much moisture is present. If there is too much dampness, this could cause the pump to shut down due to the GFCI tripping. Checking the outlet and the GFCI breaker to ensure that they are in good condition is an important part of maintenance checkups.
The plumber will look around the area and see if there is any mold growing. This is especially important if you have had to use the pump recently or it is taking a while for the moisture to dissipate. Checking the pump’s housing and its parts for corrosion also usually happens during this part of the process.
Once they complete all of the maintenance, they will put the pump back into place and securely fasten the connections. Then, they will turn it on to ensure that everything is working properly.
Cold Weather Considerations
While temperatures dropping significantly below freezing are not a major concern in Garland, they can occur. A few quick maintenance tasks can help to ensure that your pump does not freeze once it dips below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
Make sure that your discharge lines are buried deep enough underground. This will provide a bit more insulation against the freezing temperatures. You also want to ensure that there is enough insulation on the pipes to protect them. For even more protection, a plumber can talk to you about anti-freeze attachments for sump pumps. This helps to prevent freezing and clogs. Once the fall season begins, grab the flex hose and remove it. This will reduce the risk of freezing so that your pump will be ready for use by the time those spring rains begin.
Sump Pump Replacement
Even with regular maintenance, replacing your sump pump is something you will need to do eventually. Some experts say that you should consider replacing it about once every 10 years. Once your system is 10 years old, call us to come and do an inspection to see if this is necessary.
There are some parts that a plumber can often replace during a maintenance session if they notice that they need some attention. However, if something major like the motor is no longer working properly, you will likely have to consider replacing the system to ensure proper functioning.
Expert Sump Pump Maintenance in Garland
You always want to ensure that your sump pump is ready to go in Garland. We have been servicing the area since 1981, giving us a wealth of experience and expertise with sump pumps. We can also help with your plumbing needs so that you can alleviate any water-related worries that you might have. Our experienced technicians can also help with all of your home’s heating and cooling systems to keep you comfortable throughout the year. Contact On Time Experts today to get help keeping your sump pump ready for the next rain.