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A sump pump can give you peace of mind regarding flooding in your home. These devices are designed to detect excess groundwater and flooding, particularly in the basement, and automatically pump it out. They are usually installed in basements where flooding is common (both from exterior and interior sources). 

Having a sump pump in your home could save you thousands of dollars in home repairs if you were to have flooding. But with every invention that makes our lives easier, there are new concerns and considerations. 

For sump pumps, this means mold and other water-related problems. If your sump pump breaks, the results of flooding could be catastrophic for your home – not to mention expensive.  

Broken Sump Pump & Mold

Basements are common places for excess water and humidity. High humidity and poor ventilation are a terrible combination, but unfortunately, they are conditions often found together in basements and crawl spaces. This can quickly lead to mold 

If your home has a basement, take active measures to reduce humidity in this room, regardless of how the space functions. This includes the use of dehumidifiers and good ventilation. 

Sump pumps are easy to maintain and one of the best ways to reduce moisture levels and prevent flooding in your basement. But when they fail, you can end up with a huge mold problem. The trouble with mold in the basement is that it can spread to the rest of your home easily through the ventilation system and the air itself. 

When the pump is working properly, it can remove water from the basement quickly before mold has a chance to grow. A malfunction means that the water has nowhere to go. As you probably know, water is the main risk factor for mold growth. 

Other Common Sump Pumps Issues 

Mold isn’t the only thing you’ll have to worry about if you have a sump pump. While they do serve a very important purpose, these appliances will need some basic care and maintenance over the years. 

Here are a few things to watch out for if you have a sump pump: 

  • Having the wrong size – Your sump pump may be too small or just have too much water to deal with at a certain time. This can happen during rainy weather or after indoor flooding, causing the pump to become overwhelmed.  

On the other hand, you don’t want to spend way too much money on a sump pump that is too big for your home. A professional plumber can recommend the right size sump pump for your home. 

  • Sump pump burn out – Burn out happens when you have a sump pump that is of poor quality. It sometimes occurs after years of overwork as well (a subsequent result of having a sump pump that is not large enough to handle your home’s needs). 
  • Power outage failure – Sump pumps run off electricity. During severe storms, it is common to lose power for any amount of time. Unfortunately, the storm that knocked your power out probably also bringing loads of precipitation with it. 

A power outage in your home, right when you need your pump most, can have terrible effects. Power loss to your pump, while less common, also leaves you without a very important home protection tool. 

  • Clogged or frozen pipes – The pipes that serve your sump pump are just as likely to get clogged or freeze as the rest of the pipes in your home. If you have an issue with your pipes, you will need a plumber’s help to make repairs or clear the lines. 

You can expect a sump pump to last at least 10 years. Regular inspections and maintenance prolong this lifespan. Some homeowners are fortunate enough to get 20 or more years out of their sump pumps.

Here are some tips to get the most from your sump pump: 

  • Test it each spring. Pour just enough water into the basin to make the pump turn on. If it successfully pumps out all the water, you don’t need to do anything else! 
  • Periodically clean out the basket where dirt and sand can collect. Debris can reduce your sump pump’s efficiency and lead to clogs. 
  • Have a professional plumber inspect your sump pump every few years to make sure it is functioning properly. 

Calling a Plumber for Major Sump Pump Problems 

If you have had a small sump pump failure, you can probably handle the cleanup yourself. (You still need to call a plumber to get the issue fixed, though!)

A power outage, for example, should not be a lasting problem for your sump pump. Once power is restored, your pump should be able to remove any water that has accumulated. 

If this happens, it’s a good idea to run a dehumidifier in your basement and use towels to dry up any standing water so that mold does not have a chance to start growing. It also may be necessary to remove furniture that has been exposed to the water so that it has the opportunity to dry out. 

For complete sump pump failure, you need to get a plumber to your home as soon as possible, especially if water is still flooding the area. This is also true if it is a rainy time of year. 

Plumbers have high-capacity equipment that can pump out excess water fast. This prevents issues like mold that result from standing water, and it also allows them to get to work quickly on your sump pump issue. 

If a repair is needed, they will know exactly where to start, and they’ll have the tools on hand to get the job done quickly, before any lasting damage occurs.

If there is mold in the basement, Pure Maintenance of Central Illinois is the company to call. We offer demo-free mold remediation throughout Central Illinois.


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