Can I seal this sump pit?

Reply

  #1  
Old 02-01-16, 09:21 AM
K
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Can I seal this sump pit?

I purchased a home a little over a year ago and it has a sump pit with a sump pump. During the course of my first year living there I have twice experienced 30"+ snow that later melts and heavy rains and I've never seen any evidence that any water ever entered the pit, let alone caused the pump to turn on. At one point, to test a new sump pump I installed (the original wasn't working as I learned about 6 months into ownership just by testing out of curiosity), I ran a hose down to the basement and started filling the pit up. I let the water run for about 10 minutes and it soaked into the ground as fast as it came out of the hose.

The sump pit appears to have an old drainage pipe entering it that has been sealed with concrete. The only possible source of water for this pit is coming up from the ground. The reason I am interested in sealing it, if that is a possibility, is that I do believe this sump pit is the source of some radon and humidity entering the basement. If I were to seal it, I would plan on filling it with gravel/sand and then just putting 2" or so of concrete on top.

Does this sound like a candidate for a pit that just isn't needed any more? My guess is that the outdoor gutters used to drain into it and the previous owners had the pump fail on them, causing a flood, and decided to seal it up. The outdoor gutters now drain into pipes that run under my yard straight to the street.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 02-01-16, 09:37 AM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
IIWM, I'd get a cover designed to seal tightly to the floor and that has a rubber seal around the outlet pipe. They also have a second opening for a vent pipe, which I would install and run out the rim joist to vent to outdoors. If after a couple more years you continue to see no water at all in the pit and the pump never runs, then you could perhaps fill it in as you suggest.

If you test(and you should), and you do indeed have a radon problem, then the vent would provide a simple place to install a radon fan to see if that helps.
 
  #3  
Old 02-02-16, 07:50 AM
K
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 15
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I really appreciate the input. I think that is the best idea for now. Sealing one of those rings over the pit will be a little tricky because it bumps up rather close to a wall frame, but I think I might be able to make it work.

My only concern is that the only real possible use for this pit right now is to mitigate the damage of a flood from within the house. My hot water tank, for example, is right next to it. If I seal it from the top, I lose that entire "safety net". But, if I have radon issues (I am mailing in my test sample today), then I am pretty sure the sump pit must be sealed. Is there any way to find a balance between the two? My pit can't really fit one of those liners where you can install a trap (there is a large cement pipe at the bottom).
 
  #4  
Old 02-02-16, 08:29 AM
C
Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 3,138
Received 2 Votes on 2 Posts
So you might as well wait until your get your results. If there's no radon issue, then you can use a loose fitting cover that would allow water on the floor to enter.

If you do need a sealed sump, and are really concerned about water on the floor, then a floor drain feeding into the sump, with a trap in line to block gasses/radon would probably be your best approach. It would require cutting out a little bit of the slab, but not a big job if it's right next to the sump. You will have to remember to keep the trap filled with water or install a trap filler.
 
Reply
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: