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Choosing The Best Option
What goes into being the best, you may ask. The criteria we've looked at include:
If you’ve ever had a flooded basement, then you know the dread that is associated with a rainy day. Rather than enjoying a movie with the kids, you’re in the basement with a flashlight ready at a moment’s notice to catch the leak in its tracks. Stop the worry and find the drainage system that will make you love rainy days again.
To find the best sump pump for your home, you’ll need to know what it will primarily be used for. Sump pumps in the basement are equipped to tackle the floods that can leave walls moldy and wooden beams destroyed. When searching for a product to handle this kind of disaster, you need to be diligent in your choice. Or maybe you’re a hobbyist who just tried out their new DIY boat for the first time, and it took on a bit of water. Get that sump pump out and save your dream boat.
Regardless of why you need a drainage system, you don’t need to be a master of sump pumps to make the best decision. Take a look at the differences in power, materials, pricing and switch style to pick the sump pump that is right for your home.
Power - Sump pumps use horsepower to measure their motor’s power, and this can range from ⅓ HP to 1 HP. For typical residential uses, ⅓ and ½ HP motors can get the job done, and these will be the numbers you see on our picks.
What Horsepower is Right for Me?
There’s quite a difference between a house on a flood plain and a house on a slope. One collects water whereas the other doesn’t.
If your yard and home are prone to flooding, higher horsepower can drain more water faster, but you’ll also see a price increase.
How Far Does the Water Discharge Need to go?
On top of this, if your sump pump setup is built to discharge water above the sump pump itself, then you need to consider the distance that this covers. For example, if the sump pump is 7-10 feet below the point of discharge (let’s say that your pipes lift up and carry the water out and away from your basement), then this requires less power than a sump pump that needs to carry the water 35 feet away.
Powerful Enough vs. Too Powerful
It’s tempting to go after the motor with the most power for any size space and use... after all, won’t this just get the job done? It might be a faster fix for a small flood or simple job, but with a motor that is working faster on a smaller job, this means that the motor life is going to be short and sweet.
And, of course, on the opposite end of the spectrum is the too-small dilemma. When the horsepower is too low for a job, your motor will be running tirelessly to eliminate a large job. This can easily cause your motor to be overworked, and once again, you have a lifespan that was just a little too short.
Materials - It’s simple: All sump pumps are not created equally. Durability can be measured in what the sump pump housing is made of. The housing protects the motor, so you want to make sure that it provides a shell that won’t compromise the functionality of the entire sump pump.
Some manufacturers take every step to ensure that their product is airtight and protected against the elements. When your drainage system is constantly running against water and waste, you’ll need it to be tough. They’ll coat their materials in epoxy to give them that added layer of protection.
Sump pumps are typically housed in cast iron, thermoplastic, or stainless steel to ensure longevity. Our top picks are either made from cast iron or thermoplastic, depending on the model. Cast iron will sit higher on the durability scale, but again, that also means going a little higher on the budget.
Switches - Along the same lines as the materials used, every sump pump uses its own style of switch. Three types of switches rule the sump pump world: tethered, vertical, and electronic. The size of the sump pit, or the area where the sump pump will be located, can easily help you determine which switch is best.
If a sump pit is too small, it may hinder the activation of the sump pump. This can happen if the switch gets stuck or jammed on the sides of the pit, causing the sump pump to remain in the off or on position.
To avoid this, you can measure the size of the sump pit before choosing your next sump pump. For pits that are larger in diameter and deeper, a tethered switch can help your motor last longer by resting in-between uses.
For more narrow pits, a vertical switch can turn the pump on and off with little space. In comparison to a tethered switch, the vertical switch will cause the sump pump to run more frequently, but will not allow for as much water to build up before starting the operation.
Electronic switches require the least space and are perfect for compact sump pumps that are small in diameter. These can’t be blocked since there is no flotation device to interfere with. However, when using the sump pump in water with soapy or filmy debris, the electronic switch can easily malfunction and may not be as durable as the vertical and tethered switches.
Now find that pump!
Take note of your installation, setup, and overall expectations for your sump pump, and then turn to our top 10 comparisons to find the sump pump that will get the job done for your beloved home. When taking these factors into consideration, it’s easy to narrow down which sump pump in our top 10 picks is right for you.
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