" Would a battery backup be the best bet?....or
better yet, which of those 3 options is the cheapest, without loosing
any reliablity. I just want to keep my finsihed basemnet finsihed...i
just spent about 7k in doing so. "
LOL That reminds me of a sign a guy had at work on his office door a
long time ago:
Pick any two.
As Joseph pointed out, a battery backup only lasts as long as the
battery will last. You just told us that your pump is currently
running 10 mins out of every 50 mins right now, during a heavy rain
storm. That's 20% of the time, a pretty hefty duty cycle, a lot more
than a typical sump pump would run. And you said the most water occurs
in the spring. You can go get specs on the battery backup units and
figure out how long the protection will last, depending on the battery
size. My guess is, you'd be looking at several hours.
Is that enough? Well, that's up to you and how much risk you want to
take, how likely it is the power will go off and how long it will take
for it to come back on. I'd take a hard look at the water powered
units that Joseph also recommended. If you can get one that can turn
on by itself, that would provide an unlimited solution, assuming of
course that you have municipal water. The only concern I can think of
is how reliable are they? In particular, you don't want it to come on
accidentally and run constantly while you're away for a week. That
could run up a big water bill.
A generator is certainly an option. For minimal cost you could get a
manual start one and just plug the pump into it if needed. That
assumes that someone is there to do it. Or you could get a natural gas
powered unit with an automatic transfer switch that comes on
automatically, capable of powering a good portion of the rest of the
house too, but that is going to cost thousands of dollars.
Finally, I'll tell you this, which you may not want to hear. And that
is that just about all basements that I've seen with a pump that runs
20% of the time during a heavy rain, wind up having some kind of
moisture and/or water problem sooner or later anyway. IMO, finishing
these basements is just asking for more trouble.