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Sump Pump Install & Repair

Why would I need a sump pump, and how would I go about putting one in? Should I call in a professional? These are questions that anyone could ask themselves when dealing with excess water entering your home from outside during heavy rains or times of thawing snow.

The purpose of a sump pump is to collect flood water entering your basement into a pit and, by utilizing a pump system, redirect the water to a point outside your home. By using this system, the likelihood of water pooling and causing damage and mold is significantly reduced.

Residential Plumber Outdoor
When to Call in the Pros:

Installing a sump pump requires a well-thought-out plan involving a few materials and tools. For a fresh DIY person, this kind of project may take a couple of days depending on what tools you have on hand or may need to rent. For an experienced DIY person, this would most likely take 1 day to finish, again depending on tools available and knowledge. I would recommend that anyone attempting this, who is not comfortable with concrete work and work of this nature, should seek a professional.

The first step in installing a sump pump would be to locate the lowest point in your basement, as that would be the point where moisture would accumulate. This can be accomplished with a long level or laser level.

Next, you would break open the concrete and dig a hole deep enough to accommodate your system. This will involve removing the drainage rock located beneath the concrete, so plan ahead of time where this material will be moved to out of your construction area to prevent it from impeding your project. This kind of work is usually done with the aid of a jackhammer or a sledgehammer and cold chisel. Work cautiously, and wear safety glasses and possibly a face shield to prevent flying debris from injuring your face. Once the hole has been dug out with enough space to accommodate the sump pump and tank, you are ready to proceed to the next step.

For the sump pump to operate efficiently, the well must have weeping holes in it to allow the water to enter. The best practice is to drill out holes in the sides and bottom if the manufacturer has not already done so. You then wrap the tank in some form of material to prevent any mud or debris from plugging the holes. Landscaping fabric is most used for this purpose. It is important to note to add some form of a solid base for the tank, usually by adding stone to prevent the sump pump from shifting.

Upon adding the sump pump to the tank, test the pump to ensure that the float valve moves freely up and down. This is an important checkpoint, as the pump will activate when the float arm is in the up position, and if it sticks in the down position, the well will overfill, causing flooding. An optional item to consider is a device called a high-water alarm that will sound a loud audible siren if the well does overfill. The next step is to add a hose to drain the well to a point outside your home far enough away from the foundation that the water won’t immediately re-enter. This can be run with a flexible hose or some form of PVC pipe with connections to allow for future inspection in case of a blockage. An important note on this is to make sure the sump pump is on a separate electrical circuit to help lessen the chances of it tripping into the “off” position during times of heavy demand on that circuit.

The final steps of installing the sump pump are to test the system by pouring water into the well high enough to raise the float arm and activate the pump. Observe the drain line for any visual leaks and make any adjustments to the slope of the drain to maximize its potential. Finally, after all the testing has been performed, close the space around the sump system with concrete, making sure that the concrete does not overlap where the tank lid will be placed. Do a final round of testing after the work has had a chance to cure, and you have a comfort level for any water issues in your basement that were not there before.

Ways that this system can go wrong are as follows. The float arm on the sump pump may not lift due to breakdown or debris preventing it from lifting during high-water points. This can be tested by manually lifting the float to see if the pump activates. If it does not, check the outlet/breaker to the pump and ensure it has power. If power is present, then there is an issue with the pump float, and a professional should be brought in to diagnose it. Another issue that may occur, more often in colder months, is the drain hose being plugged with ice, preventing the pumped water from leaving and instead returning to the tank, causing an overfill and flooding. Always check the drain hose during colder months to prevent this issue from occurring. If you have a PVC drain setup, look for any cracks in the colder months, as the water, if unable to flow out, will accumulate and freeze, causing the PVC to possibly split open due to ice buildup. If freezing occurs, then it is recommended to use a space heater to thaw it out where possible to get it flowing again. If there is damage due to ice buildup, replace the drain line.

Why Call The Gentlemen pros?

We Care About Your Health and Safety As Much As You Do

We want you to feel safe in your own home and be confident in your repair or replacement. So we thoroughly vet all our employees before hiring including background checks and drug testing. 

We employ experienced, knowledgeable, and licensed journeyman plumbers and apprentices. We also conduct ongoing training to make sure our employees are up-to-date on everything.  

We Care About Your Home As Much As You Do

When we arrive we will put on floor savers (a type of bootie) to walk through your home so we don’t track in dirt and muck from the outside.

Before we start our work, we will put down mats to protect your floors and limit the mess. When we are done, we will clean up after ourselves and remove all our garbage.

We Are Professionals

All our plumbers are journeymen plumbers or registered apprentices with the experience and knowledge to get your job done right the first time. 

Our plumbers arrive with everything we need. Our our vans carry all the tools and parts we need for the majority of jobs.  We call our vans our Warehouse On Wheels. There’s no waiting around as your plumber figures out what’s wrong and then goes to a plumbing supply store or back to the shop to get what is needed.

We Respect Our Customers

When you call, we will get someone out to you as quickly as possible. We will show up at the appointed time, diagnose the problem, and then give you a written quote for the job. There are no hidden fees and we will never pull a bait and switch on you.

Plumbing problems don’t always happen during normal working hours, so we have 24/7 emergency response. So if your toilet stops working at 4 a.m. give us a call and we’ll come out.

No matter what time of the day or day of the week you call, you will always speak to another human being. Having a toilet emergency is stressful and we don’t want to add to your stress by making you leave a message and hoping somebody gets back to you quickly. 

When you call we will answer!

On top of all this, we guarantee our work and we consistently receive excellent reviews from past customers.

Fun Facts
  • The use of toilets have increased our lifespans by 20 years over the past 200 years.
  • An average person goes to the toilet 6 to 8 times a day. That’s 2,190 to 2,920 times a year.
  • 85% of toilet-related injuries happen when someone falls in after the seat has been left up.
  • 7 million cell phones are dropped in a toilet a year. Keep a firm grip on your phones folks!
  • 75% of people report using their phones on the toilet. They are texting, shopping, surfing the web, and phoning people.
  • The more features your phone has, the longer you’ll spend on the toilet.
  • Most toilets flush in E flat.
  • In 1957, “Leave It To Beaver” was one of the first TV shows to show a toilet bowl.
  • In 1960, the movie “Psycho” was the first American movie to show a toilet being flushed. It apparently received a lot of complaints for indecency.
  • In 1971, a toilet flushing was heard on the TV show “All In the Family”, 14 years after the episode of “Leave It to Beaver” showed a toilet bowl.
  • In 1930, the first successful artificial Christmas tree was made by Addis Houseware Company from their toilet brush bristles and using the equipment they used to make their toilet brushes.
  • In South Korea, there is a toilet museum and cultural park. In English, it is called Mr. Toilet House.
  • Your cell phone carries 10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats.
  • NASA’s new space toilet costs $30 million CAD. It was sent the International Space Station in 2020. 
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