What size sump pump do I need? How do I know what size of sump pump I need for my house? What happens when you install a wrong-sized sump pump? All these questions wreck havoc on your mind when it comes to deciding what size of sump pump you must install. The reason why you are struggling to get the answers is that there is no one answer to these questions. The answers are all contingent upon the weather conditions of your area. You will have to do thorough research and get all the technical details.
Now, if you are not a professional, the discussion of all those technical factors and mathematical problems will be useless and will just go over your head. So, why don’t we stick to the overall factors in a language that is understandable to a layman? Sounds good? Great! Then keep on reading this article to the very end to get all the relevant information relating to this topic.
What Size Sump Pump Do I Need
1. Estimate The Capacity Needs
Many people have different opinions regarding this step. However, I would suggest you not get involved in any complex calculations or estimates that most of the time turn out to be a complete failure. What I would recommend you is to call in a professional. He will take all the measurements and do all the dirty work for you. You will just have to sit by and let him do the job. In any case, if you want to get a basic idea then let me give you a brief summary of the main factor that determines what size sump pump you should get.
Weather is one of the few major factors that should be considered while deciding what size of sump pump you should install. Areas that experience heavy rainfalls have a high water table, which is why you should install a larger sump pump as compared to the one you would have installed if you lived in a dry area (check out the small sump pumps for smaller or less messy areas). The same goes for mountainous areas with snowfall. So, you see how important it is to consider the weather conditions before you get a sump pump? Anyways, if you think that all this just goes over your head then do as I recommended earlier and call in the professional!
2. Choose The Correct Horsepower
Horsepower is the measure of how powerful the motor of a sump pump is. You can get ½, ⅓, and 3⁄4 Horsepower sump pumps in the market. All these sump pumps are good for domestic purposes however, that does not mean that you should just get one. You will have to consider the capacity of the sump pump and decide which one to get. Ideally, a ⅓ horsepower sump pump motor would provide sufficient power to keep your basement from flooding. However, if your area experiences heavy rainfall, then you must get either a ½ or ¾ horsepower sump pump.
3. The Static Head
The static head, interchangeably known as the vertical lift, is the distance the water from the sump pit has to travel before the pipes turn horizontal from vertical. The thing is, the greater the distance is between the two points, the harder it will be for the sump pump to push the water up the pipes and away and hence, you shall need a more powerful motor and a bigger sump pump.
4. Friction Head
You all must already be familiar with the term friction. It is what happens when two objects rub against each other. In simple words, it is a restraining force that slows down the speed of something. This phenomenon applies to the pipes of a sump pump too. However, it is not the pipes but the water flowing through the pipes that cause friction. So, in order to keep the water flowing through the pipes against the frictional forces, your sump pump motor should be powerful enough. Otherwise, the water inside the friction head will stop, and well, you know the rest!
Is it important to get the right size of a sump pump?
Absolutely! You will have to take all the measurements and do all the technical calculations on your sump pit as well as the surrounding area and the water table in your area before settling on a particular size of a sump pump. However, if you skip on this part and just get a random sump pump, you may end up getting an inadequate sump pump that hardly keeps your basement from overflowing with flood water. So, you must take this step very seriously and call in professional help if you think it is too much for you to handle. Trust me, it will save you a lot of money.
So, this was all from my side. I sincerely hope that you got all the information you needed to get started on your work. If you are a seasoned professional then understanding all this wouldn’t have been much of an issue for you however, if you are a newbie then you must have found all this a little vague and confusing. So, I would recommend you to either get proper training regarding all this or do more research. But if you are not a professional and just looking to get it done yourself just to save a few bucks, then I would discourage that and insist that you call in help.
Adam Wilson is the plumbing products Editor for Mechanics Gear, covering everything related to plumbing. He have 15 years of experience as a plumber and written about plumbing gear for over two years and plans to continue writing for a long while to come. Since he started sharing his plumbing knowledge on Mechanics Gear, he loves nothing more than relaxing in his home and and writing his plumbing experiences. Adam Wilson likes finding new plumbing products and dive into, from manuals, forums and different plumbing groups.