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Avoid Disaster With A Back-Up Water-Powered Sump Pump

Posted on November 13, 2012

If your Wichita area home has a basement, you likely have a sump pump. If you do, your home needs the backup protection of a water-powered sump pump. There’s a substantial likelihood of a flooded basement during the sudden inundation of a rainstorm, or gradual water seepage if you’re in a location with a high water table. The consequences can be disastrous. You’ll sustain damage to the structure of your home, its electrical system and valuables stored in your basement. Often some of the same conditions that produce flooding, such as a severe storm, may also interrupt the electrical grid and disable the sump pump. In addition, the primary sump pump may also fail to operate due to a clogged intake or a defective float switch.

A water-powered sump pump takes over if the primary electric pump fails, even if the power’s out. Here’s how it works:

  • The water-operated pump takes water from the municipal water supply with a pressure of at least 20 psi or more. Installed by a plumber, they are usually supplied by a dedicated pipe leading straight to the water meter for total dependability.
  • Municipal water entering the backup sump pump under pressure flows through a constrictor, then out through an ejector. This creates a pressure reduction that induces suction, a process called the Venturi effect. The suction draws flood water up out of the sump pit, merges it with the stream of incoming municipal water and discharges it out of your basement through a separate pipe. For every one gallon of municipal water passing through the pump, two gallons of water are removed from the sump pit.
  • Battery-powered backup pumps will only operate a limited amount of time — usually about eight hours — before the battery is discharged. Water-powered backup continues to operate as long as the municipal water pressure is sufficient. In most cases, storms and other conditions that temporarily interrupt electricity do not affect the municipal water supply.

Comfort Systems combines four long-established Wichita companies into one source of heating, cooling and plumbing expertise. For answers to more questions about a water-powered sump pump, call us today.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Wichita, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about water-powered sump pumps and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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