My house is 24 years old. It is built on a hillside with a walkout
When I bought it 12 years ago I found the sump pump was installed
incorrectly and couldn't work. I fixed it and it worked fine when I flooded
the sump. It has never actually cycled because of water in the sump.
A few months ago we really heavy rains and snow melt; there was flooding all
around. The bottom of my sump had an inch of water in it, but it would have
to come up about 16" to cycle the pump. When I emptied my water heater into
it, it emptied immediately. So, you get the idea that I am pretty dry.
Okay, the problem. Just for the heck of it, I tested the pump today. It
It is so badly corroded I can't even read what brand it is.
Any point to trying fix it, or is the inside probably as bad as the outside?
Should I replace it, or just board over the sump? If it hasn't had more
than an inch in 24 years, the chances of it coming up 2' is pretty small,
but not absolutely impossible. I could use the extra floor space.
I drain my shop sink into the sump, but could still do that; I don't use it
Ground mositure after 24 years will rust anything, let alone the sink
Since your on the side of the hill I would do some digging, run a
underground line so gravity takes care of things.
dont bother trying to fix a pump so old.
realize when you go to sell the house someday everything will be a
Actually I wanted the extra floor space more then the $75; but I just
finished installing a new one.
Despite running a hose full blast, I couldn't get the water high enough to
test it; I guess I will have to wait until it is wetter out.
I'm glad you replaced it. If a house has a sump pump pit, it was
built to have one. The drain tiles drain in there and sooner or later
you will need it. It siezed up from lack of use. You got to run them
at least a few times a year. If the pit dont fill up all the way with
water, fill it partway and life the float manually to pump some water.
The pump you have there is a Zoeller. Although you got a new pump,
I'd recommend trying to fix your old one for a spare. The reason is
because Zoeller pumps are excellent and well made. If I was near you,
I'd be happy to take the old one off your hands. I have rebuilt
several of them. All that rust and crap will usually clean off. I
cleaned up my old ones, took them apart, rebuilt them and painted
them. They are like new. A new impeller is probably all it needs.
The bottom comes off with about 8 screws. There is a thing to know
about these, and that is to save the oil inside. It's banana oil
(yeah, I never knew there was such a thing till I tore that pump
apart, and went to buy parts and asked the parts guy what kind of oil
to fill it with. He sold me some).
I have one that's probably 40 years old and still works fine. I just
replaced the impeller and lower seal. painted it up and was good to
go. I think I replaced the switch once too. Thats under the top
cover, 4 screws remove that, and a new gasket is needed to keep water
You can go to
That is most likely the series 50 pump, probably the model 55
Spec sheet here:
Parts blowup here:
I also have a sump pump that does not come on very often.
I find that the bearings will seize up after a period of inactivity.
To avoid this, I make a habit of cycling the pump on for a few seconds
once a month or so just to keep the bearings from seizing up. Also I
check it when a big rain is expected. You can do this by lifting the
float or in some cases plugging the pump in directly instead of through
the float switch. I don't use water to do it. Make sure the pump is
actually turning and not just humming as it does when the bearing
seizes. You can tell easily by the sound with a little practice.
Consider yourself very lucky that you don't really need the sump pump.
Can't you build a lid for the sump, 1" plywood or two layers of 3/4",
Sumpun' like that.
I'm confused. Where does the water go? There must already be a
In that casel, you need a pump for when the drain is clogged, by some
critter or critter next, or a collapsed pipe or something.
Where does the water go now? Out into the dry earth? So when it's
wetter it won't go so fast? See my previous paragraph.
Remove NOPSAM to email me. Please let
me know if you have posted also.
Just into the dry ground. AFAIK, the ground has never been saturated enough
to get more than an inch of water in the sump naturally as long as I have
lived here. I will have to wait for a day like that to test the pump.
The inside probably looks the same as outside. Thats how my pumps look.
Either clean it up or replace the pump. The best answer though is to
talk to your local building department and see what the water level is
like around your house/neighborhood. Also talk to neighbors and see if
they have sump pumps. It could be that some modification happened to
the local area and your water is going elsewhere.
"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
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