Battery Backup vs Water Powered Sump Pump

Battery Backup vs Water Powered Sump Pump | Learn 5 Differences

Last Updated on June 21, 2023

A sump pump protects your home from potentially devastating flooding and water damage. You can choose between two powerful solutions: battery backup pumps or water-powered systems. Whichever you choose, rest assured that both provide an effective defense against groundwater or heavy rainfall.

However, the two types of sump pumps have distinct differences. The installation process is the key difference between them. While a battery version can be set up without connecting to any household plumbing, with a water-powered system, you’ll need access to your home’s water supply.

They also differ in power output, pumping capacity, maintenance needs, and cost. So choosing the right sump pump to protect your home during a flood can be daunting.

Should you use a battery-powered backup or one relying solely on water? By exploring and comparing both types of pumps, this post aims to help you decide.

Battery Backup vs Water Powered Sump Pump: How They Differ?

Differences Between Battery Backup vs Water Powered Sump Pump

With so much riding on the right sump pump choice, it’s important to explore what sets one type apart from another. Knowing these differences can help you make a confident decision for your home or business.

Let’s Uncover the Varied Differences:

ONE: Installation

Battery backup sump pumps are significantly easier to install than water-powered ones because they do not require any connection to the home’s water supply piping. All that needs to be done is to connect the pump to an outlet or a generator, and then the pump is ready for use.

On the other hand, water-powered sump pumps must be properly installed due to their need for connection with the home’s water supply piping. This requires additional time and effort and knowledge of plumbing systems and how they work.

TWO: Power & Pumping Volume

In terms of power output/pumping volume, battery backup pumps are more powerful than their water-powered counterparts. Battery backups come equipped with high motor ratings – typically 1/4 HP or 1/3 HP – which allow them to pump out up to 2,000 GPH (Gallons Per Hour).

Additionally, these pumps can lift up to 10 feet in new conditions – much higher than most standard sump pumps on the market today.

Meanwhile, while water-powered pumps typically have lower motor ratings, they use about 1 gallon of city water to pump out around 1 or 2 gallons of sump water. Giving them a ratio of 1:2 at 1000 GPH while using 5,000 gallons of city water to prevent 10,000 gallons of basement flooding.

THREE: Maintenance

Water-powered sump pumps require minimal maintenance since they have fewer moving parts than other types of pumps. All that is needed is to conduct twice-yearly testing to ensure everything functions properly.

Alternatively, battery backup pumps require more frequent maintenance due to their reliance on batteries for power. These pumps need regular battery replacement to ensure proper operation. Furthermore, frequent use can reduce the lifespan of their batteries. 

FOUR: Dependability

Water-powered sump pumps are incredibly reliable since they never lose power due to an outage or other electrical issues. Additionally, they have unlimited pumping rates, ensuring they can easily handle even large amounts of water.

Conversely, battery backup pumps do not have an unlimited pumping rate and can lose power if either the battery runs out or experiences a malfunction. 

FIVE: Cost

Battery backup sump pumps are generally more expensive than water-powered systems because they come with additional components such as batteries and backup systems. The price will depend on the size and pumping power of your system. 

Higher-power systems typically cost more money than lower-powered ones.

Sump pumps powered by water are much more affordable and easy to install, which makes them ideal for budget-conscious homeowners. However, it’s essential to consider how much water your basement takes in before deciding on a system, as this will greatly affect which type of pump is best for you.

Battery Backup Sump Pumps: How Do They Work?

Battery Backup Sump Pumps

Battery backup sump pumps are an important tool for keeping homes safe from water damage due to flooding. These backups provide a reliable power source during a power outage or if the primary pump fails.

A battery backup sump pump works by being separate from the primary pump and powered by a marine or deep-cycle battery. This battery can last up to 10 hours, providing continuous protection against water damage caused by flooding.

The battery backup sump pump is installed in the same sump pit as the primary pump. When water enters the sump pit, it activates the primary pump, which drains the water away from your home into a suitable area like a storm drain, sewer line, or dry well.

If either the primary pump fails due to mechanical issues such as clogs or if there is an extended power outage, then the battery backup sump pump will automatically activate. It then pumps any remaining water out of the pit and away from your home, ensuring that no further water damage is done.

How Does Water Powered Sump Pump work?

How Does Water Powered Sump Pump work

Unlike traditional electric pumps, the water-powered sump pump relies on the power of water to move water through the system. The process begins with the float switch activating and signaling that the water level has risen in the sump basin.

This sets off a chain reaction where the pump jet draws water from the sump basin into the pump, which is then controlled by a valve allowing a combination of municipal and sump basin water to exit through a discharge line.

Due to its reliance on water pressure rather than electricity. The water-powered pump is generally much more energy efficient than traditional electric pumps. It can be used as an eco-friendly alternative for drainage basins or pools of excess liquid.

Is It Possible to Install a Battery Backup on Any Sump Pump?

Battery backups can be installed on any sump pump. This type of installation requires a few parts, which include the battery backup system itself, PVC pipe and fittings, check valves, electrical wiring, and PVC cement.

Installing the battery backup system correctly is paramount for a successful installation. It’s important to make sure all components are securely fit together and that there are no leaks in either the plumbing or electrical connections.

The battery backup system should be installed near the existing sump pump. The batteries need to be connected to the sump pump for it to receive power from them when utility power fails.

Check valves are necessary to prevent water from flowing back out of the discharge pipes and into the basement or crawlspace when power is lost. To ensure nothing leaks, PVC pipe cement must be used between the existing plumbing and the battery-powered installation.

What’s the Lifespan of a Water Powered Sump Pump?

The average life expectancy for water-powered sump pumps is 10 years, depending on the frequency and intensity of their use. Proper installation and maintenance are key components to getting the most out of your sump pump.

Regularly cleaning the intake filter, ensuring all suction hoses are in good condition, and keeping an eye open for any signs of wear or tear can help extend the life of your sump pump. To ensure optimal performance and longevity, ensure the impeller is properly lubricated and free of debris.

To ensure your sump pump is in tip-top shape and lasts for years to come, regularly inspect the connections and watch out for any signs of leakage. Investing in a high-quality model upfront ensures you get optimal performance with maximum durability.

How long do battery-powered backup sump pumps last?

How long do battery-powered backup sump pumps last

Power outages can put a damper on your day, but you don’t have to worry about flooding in the basement. Battery-backup sump pumps provide dependable coverage for between 5 and 8 hours of steady draining or 1 to 3 days with non-continuous use.

To ensure its performance remains at peak levels, it is recommended that you replace the unit every five years, depending on how often it’s used.

Factors that may reduce the lifespan of a battery-powered backup sump pump include high electrical load, extreme temperatures, and overuse. Exposure to such conditions can cause a reduction in the overall lifespan of the battery, leading to decreased performance or even premature failure.

Regular maintenance and storage in an environment with moderate humidity and temperature will maximize the device’s life expectancy. Battery backup sump pumps should also be recharged regularly according to manufacturer instructions. This will help extend its life and keep it running reliably.

When the Battery Goes Out, How Do You Keep the Sump Pump Running?

Using a generator is the best way to keep a sump pump running when the battery goes out. A portable generator can be used in this instance and can provide a quick, easy solution in an emergency.

When your sump pump is ready to go, fill the generator with fuel and connect an extension cord. Once that’s done, flip on the switch and watch as it springs back to life thanks to the generator’s steady stream of power.

Remember that when using a portable generator for such an application, you should always run it outside because there’s a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Additionally, any cords or hoses leading from your home should be kept away from contact with water sources or wet surfaces so as not to create any safety risks.

Is It Worth It to Have a Water-Powered Backup Sump Pump?

Is It Worth It to Have a Water-Powered Backup Sump Pump

Having a water-powered backup sump pump is often worth the cost for many homeowners. As it can provide substantial peace of mind and protection from flooding

Unlike traditional electric pumps, water-powered pumps use municipal water pressure to pump out excess ground or surface water from your basement or crawl space. This means that you won’t have to worry about power outages obstructing your sump pump’s performance.

Something that can be particularly important in areas known for power cuts due to storms or other environmental events. But how do you choose the right backup pump? Choosing the right one can be hard because there are so many options.

But don’t worry. Our best water powered backup sump pump guide can help you make the right choice. We’ve researched for you and compiled all the necessary information to help you make an informed decision.

Choose Smartly: Battery Backup or Water Powered Pumps

Regarding sump systems, choosing between a battery backup and water powered pump could be the difference between total protection or an expensive inconvenience. Battery backups are typically more costly but provide peace of mind thanks to their independence from municipal power supplies.

Water-powered pumps are cheaper, but you will need access to water for them to work. Think about what is most important to you: cost or dependability. Look at all the factors before deciding which type of sump system is best for your needs.

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