Sump Pumps, what are they for? How do they work? If you live in Las Vegas and do not have a basement then you may wonder what exactly is a sump pump? Many Las Vegas residents will never encounter a sump pump because basements are not common thus there is no need for a sump pump. A sump pump is a pump usually located in a basement or crawl space (the lowest point of a home or structure) and is intended to prevent flooding. The pump itself is usually located in a “sump pit” where water from drains or from the soil beneath the pit fills the pit causing the sump pump to activate and pump water away from the building. As mentioned before a sump pump usually stands in a “sump pit”, which is a large hole usually with a gravel base and is sealed to keep the pump within it. Once the pit fills with water the pump turns on and through a specifically placed drain line evacuates the water away from the property. That drain line usually has a check valve to prevent backflow to the pit. Most modern pumps in homes now days are automatic, meaning that the pump will turn on automatically through either a float within the pit that when reaching a certain water level will turn on or a pressure sensor that when exerted will activate the pump. Additionally, pumps also have a manual failsafe if the float or sensor do not work, and you need the pump to kick on. If the pump you have is not adequate and cannot evacuate enough water quickly it is recommended that you go from the standard submersible pumps to a pedestal sump pump. A pedestal pump is outside of the pit and connects to the bottom of the pit and pumps the water out. The benefit of a pedestal pump is that it usually can evacuate more water than a submersible and is usually cheaper. The draw back to a pedestal is that because they are located outside of the pit, they can be much louder, for this reason it is more common to find submersible pumps.
It is important to also note that a sump pump and ejector pump are two separate things, often confused as the same thing, they have very different purposes. An ejector pumps purpose is to remove waste from basements or areas that cannot use gravity to transfer away waste. They are specifically designed to remove human waste and paper not ground water. Where as sump pumps cannot move waste and paper, only clean ground water or storm water.