Many American homes with basements have sump pumps installed in order to prevent flooding. Depending on where you live and what the weather is like, you may or may not need one. How do you tell whether or not you need a sump pump? If you notice any of these signs, you may want to consider investing in one before your home suffers water damage. For further information on waterproofing services, visit our website at https://foundationrepairbowlinggreen.com/.
1. Your Basement Is Flooding
When water ends up in your basement, especially if it happens more than once, it’s a clear sign that something needs to change and that your basement needs to be waterproofed in some way. It’s recommended that after a flood, you look into sump pump installation and basement waterproofing in order to prevent flooding from happening again.
2. Your Sump Pump is Aging
If your home already has a sump pump but it’s beginning to age, it may be time to look into installing a new one. Typically, sump pump installations last 7-10 years. Even if yours seems to be still working properly as you come up on 10 years since installation, don’t wait until your basement is flooding to look into a replacement.
3. You Live Below the Water Table
The water table is an invisible boundary line underground. The ground below the water table is saturated with water, while the ground above it is unsaturated. If your home is built so that your basement sits below the water table, you will likely need to have a sump pump. You may even want to “double up” and waterproof the basement as well.
4. You Get Lots of Snow or Rain
April showers bring May flowers, but they also bring basement floods. Spring is the most common time for basement flooding to occur, so if you live in an area that sees large amounts of snow or rainfall, consider looking into your options before spring rolls around.
5. You Have a Sump Pump, But Still Notice Water in the Basement
If your sump pump is working properly, there should never be water in the basement. If your sump pump is running but still allowing water into the basement, it’s time to consider replacing it.
6. Mold Growth in the Basement
Even if you don’t see any water in your basement, mold is a good indication that it’s been there. Mold growth begins within 48 hours of initial water damage, so if you find any in your basement, you may have a flooding or leaking problem.
7. Your Sump Pump is Always Running
Your existing sump pump should only run when you need it to. If it’s running constantly, that’s a clear indication of a problem and you may need to call a sump pump installation professional to replace it.
Sump Pump Alternatives
Any home with a basement, even ones that don’t necessarily need a sump pump, should have some sort of waterproofing done in the basement to prevent damage. Here are a few alternatives to sump pump installation.
- Basement waterproofing. There are two types of basement waterproofing: interior and exterior. Interior waterproofing involves installing moisture barriers along the walls and floor of the basement from the inside to protect the basement from water when it gets in, while exterior waterproofing is a more involved process that involves digging a trench around the house and installing equipment that directs the water away from the basement in the first place.
- Your gutters play an important role in keeping your home dry. When gutters are properly installed, they should direct rainfall away from the building at a safe distance. If you live on a slope, you may run into problems with that water coming back down towards your home, but that’s where sump pump installation can come in handy.
- French drains. A French drain goes by many names, including perimeter drains, land drains, and trench drains just to name a few. They are relatively simple, consisting of a small trench and a perforated pipe that water drains into. The pipes are covered with gravel or rocks for aesthetic purposes, then the pipe takes the water away from the home and out to a safe area like a sewer.
Handling Water Damage and Floods Without a Sump Pump
What happens if your home does not have a sump pump and your basement floods? First of all, do not panic. There are ways to get the water out without the use of a sump pump.
First, you can try using a hand pump to remove water from your basement. This is a great option if your electricity goes out. Even if you do not have a sump pump in your home, you will likely have a hookup for sump pump installation. A hand pump will hook into that, then you will thread a garden hose onto the other end outside and proceed to pump the water out into the yard.
Though it’s hard work, using buckets to scoop out the majority of the water may help bring the water down far enough that you can use a wet/dry vac to clean up the rest. You can usually rent these from a hardware store.
Does Every Home Need a Sump Pump?
Now that you know some of the signs that you may need a sump pump, you might be wondering whether every home needs one, or whether you can get by without one. It’s important to note that no, not every home needs a sump pump. If you do not have a basement- for example, homes that are built on a concrete slab- you won’t need one. Additionally, if your home has a “walk out basement,” you likely will not need a sump pump. Walk out basements typically appear in houses built into the sides of hills and feature at least one wall above the ground.
If you are wondering whether you should have sump pump installation done on your home, the best thing to do is to call a local basement waterproofing company and have them do an inspection.
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