A battery-powered backup sump pump can be a lifesaver when your main AC-powered sump pump breaks down or you are caught in the midst of a hurricane without electricity.
They are just as powerful and effective as your main sump pump and power automatically when they are triggered by certain circumstances. Although it is just as powerful, it is not recommended to use the battery-operated sump pump is your main system; reserve it for back-up situations because the batteries have a limited lifetime. Follow these steps when operating a battery sump pump backup.
How the Backup Sump Pump is Powered
Battery backup sump pumps serve as the backup to the main pump in the event the main pump breaks or can’t handle an increased amount of water. Most devices automatically power when triggered by specified situations. Older systems may not have this technological advancement. Check your owner’s manual to determine whether yours is automatic. If it’s not, learn how to turn it on.
Don’t walk on wet floors without all power being turned off. Call an electrician if your main power supply is in the basement with a wet floor. Don’t let your sump pump become exposed to snow or rain.
When you remove the plug from the socket, tug on the plug instead of the cord. Pulling on the cord can cause sparks. Avoid using extension cords. If you absolutely must use an extension cord, ensure that it’s the same configuration as the plug to the sump pump.
Avoid using any attachments that are not recommended by the manufacturer of your sump pump. Using attachments not recommended may cause a fire or shock. If your sump pump has a computer control box, do not operate it if it has been damaged.
Don’t ever handle the control unit of your sump pump if your hands are wet as you run a risk of electrocution. Be sure all plugs and the battery are disconnected and the power is completely off before cleaning and performing maintenance of your sump pump.
Choose a Battery
Before allowing the sump pump to operate on its own, it is vital to have a fully charged battery. A car or marine battery is not ideal, as both require occasional use to work when needed.
Some sump batteries don't need to be periodically run to ensure that they'll work when you need them the most. This battery is freestanding and is designed to be left off for long periods of time without harm to the battery.
Turn It On and Let It Go
As previously stated, new models of back-up sump pumps will automatically power when the moisture level reaches a certain point. There is nothing you will need to do; however, not all models contain this feature.
Some will alert you with a sound similar to a smoke detector, notifying you to turn the device on.