If you have a sump pump in your house/basement, does it mean you have (or potentially could have) a flooding problem?


Yes, generally you'll have a sump pump if the water table could reasonably rise to the level of the bottom of the basement.

The sump pump is most often used in combination with a drainage system around the foundation that directs water into a "sump pit". The sump pump then pumps water out of the sump pit once it rises to a certain level. If you have city sewer service, the water is usually pumped into the sewer system. If not, it's usually just pumped up through a PVC pipe and out into the yard.

  • So this would suggest that a sump-pump is a flood mitigator, and that the presence of one should not induce flood-related fear (assuming the power doesn't go out during a terrible storm)? – Michael Haren Jul 30 '10 at 20:37
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    Depending on the drainage type and where your basement sits compared to the water table level, a sump pump may be essential. You can get battery-backed sump pumps for these situations. – gregmac Jul 31 '10 at 3:38
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    And if you're in an area that may go days without power, especially if you travel a lot and might not be able to replace out the batteries, and you're on city water, consider a water powered backup : thisoldhouse.com/toh/video/0,,20260244,00.html – Joe Jul 31 '10 at 5:08
  • I'd say having a backup on the pump is very important as storms are the typical time the ground water level will be rising and one of the more likely times to lose power. Seems almost silly to have a sump pump that runs purely on your electrical service. – ManiacZX Aug 2 '10 at 12:42
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    In some areas it is illegal to have it run into the city sewer. – Brad Gilbert Aug 16 '10 at 17:07

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