Basement flooding during the wet season can really wreak havoc on your home's structural integrity and can lead to problems with mold growth. Thankfully, your home has a sump pump installed that is designed to pump out any excess water that gets into the basement space. When the pump is working correctly, it will pump out all of the water collecting in the sump pit and prevent flooding.
If your sump pump is getting older or you believe it may be having mechanical issues, then you should have it looked at by a licensed plumber. Additionally, these four telltale signs of sump pump problems are things you can look for:
Sign #1: The Sump Pump is Making Unusual Noises
During storms, it's important you make the effort to go down to the basement and checkup on the sump pump. You need to ensure the pump is running when water is present, and you need to listen to its sound to make sure it isn't making any unusual noises. Typically, a failing pump will make a noise that sounds like gravel griding against metal just prior to its failure.
Sign #2: The Sump Pump Cycles On and Off
The sump pump should run when there is water in the sump pit. Once the pit is dry, then the pump should shut itself off. If the pump continually cycles on and off, or if it runs when there isn't any water present in the pit, then this is a sign there is a mechanical problem with it.
Sign #3: The Sump Pump Can't Keep Up With Stormwater
If the storms in your area have been increasing in size and strength each winter, then it's important your sump pump can keep up with the additional water. If your current sump pump doesn't seem to be able to keep up with the stormwater or it never seems to shut off during even small storms, then these are signs it should be replaced with a more robust model.
Sign #4: The Sump Pump Is Over a Decade Old
As with many other mechanical devices manufactured today, sump pumps just don't last forever. Exactly how long your sump pump will last depends on many factors, including how often it runs, who manufactured it, and how well it has been maintained. But as a good rule of thumb, if your basement's sump pump is over a decade old, then it should be replaced. Sump pump replacement is a simple project any local plumber can do.