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Sump Pump Problems And How To Fix Them

Issues can arise frequently, and at times, their origins are evident, while other times they remain obscure. Consequently, being aware of the necessary checks to rectify a malfunction in your sump pump becomes vital. Luckily, certain sump pump malfunctions can be easily resolved. Among the most prevalent of these malfunctions is a power outage. Let’s delve into further causes of sump pump problems.

  • Incorrect Pump Size. It is common to have a wrong sump pump size. An incorrectly sized sump pump will not do its job effectively and inevitably fail over time. On the other hand, in cases where you may have fitted a sump pump that’s too large, the pump will be forced to work harder than normal, and as a result, it takes a toll on the pump’s lifespan.
  • Switch Problem. Faulty switch happens with sump pumps. Most sump pumps turn on through a pressure sensor or a float activator, and the switch may get faulty. A major reason for this problem is poor or lack of maintenance. This leads to an accumulation of debris, which could prevent the smooth operation of the switch and free movement of the float activator.
  • Overworked Sump Pump. Sump pump becomes overwhelmed for several reasons. An excessive influx of water can be one of the reasons. When flooding occurs or heavy rains fall, your sump pump may be unable to deal with the high amount of water, particularly if it is not powerful enough. This problems can be solved by using more than one device or upgrading your sump pump.
  • Power Failure. Blackouts can occur, especially during heavy weather storms when you need your sump pump to function the most. You can use a generator to ensure your sump pump won’t disappoint you, even during a power outage. This way, your basement will be protected even if a heavy storm causes a power outage. A backup generator gives you peace of mind if storms are frequent in your region.
  • Frozen Or Clogged Discharge Pipe. Most times, the discharge pipe usually runs from the sump pit to an exterior space, and if blocked, the entire system will stop working, resulting in water accumulation in your basement. In addition, discharge pipes can be clogged with dirt, roots, rocks, etc. Therefore, you should endeavor to keep your pipes clean and clear, so your sump pump will function optimally. During winter, sump pumps get frozen, and to solve these problems, first identify which part of the pipe is frozen.
  • Dysfunctional Drainage System. If you want an efficiently functioning sump pump, you need a fully functioning, properly designed, and installed basement drainage system.
  • Lack or Poor Maintenance. Good maintenance can immensely extend the lifespan of your sump pump. On the other hand, lack of maintenance diminishes it rapidly. Maintenance is highly recommended because sump pumps are not typical install-and-forget devices. It is advisable to carry out maintenance services at least once a year by a professional. If you have ignored maintenance recently, the cause of the failure is likely a clogged pipe or device or a jammed float switch.

How Long Does A Sump Pump Last?

Your basement sump pump works tirelessly to keep the lower level dry, but it also requires proper care to withstand the constant exposure to moisture. Typically, a sump pump can last anywhere from 7 to 10 years if it is well-maintained. However, it is important to note that sump pumps often remain idle for a significant portion of their lifespan due to the water table and flood conditions in the area. Depending on the time of year, some pumps may be used more frequently than others. Regardless of usage, it is crucial to service the pump annually to prevent rusting of the metal components that come into contact with water. Regular maintenance, replacement, or repair of small parts can help avoid any potential breakdowns when you need the pump the most.


Well, now you know! We’ve covered the reasons behind sump pump problems and provided solutions to address some of them, ensuring that your sump pump stays in top-notch condition. The importance of the sump pump cannot be stressed enough, as flooding can lead to major headaches and expensive repairs for your home. This is especially crucial if you reside in regions prone to heavy rainfall. If you require sump pump maintenance, reach out to us today, and we’ll be more than happy to assist you.