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Sump Pump Buying Guide

Battery Backup Sump Pump features differ from a primary sump pump.  To help you understand the differences, we provide a summary explanation below and an additional page to explain each of the features listed below. Find the page links within the explanations.

  • What is battery group size – Why is battery group size important? How do battery group sizes differ? This information will help you in selecting the correct battery for your specific battery backup sump pump.
  • What is continuous runtime – Why is continuous runtime important? Is there a difference in runtime between backup pumps? Not all battery backup sump pumps have the same length of continuous runtime. This is important to know, especially if you live in an area with many power outages.
  • What is DC and DC/AC? Some battery backup sump pumps run on DC (direct current – battery) only; others run on DC and AC (alternating current – watts). Having a battery backup sump pump that runs on both DC and AC is advantageous when your primary sump pump fails mechanically, and the electricity does not.
  • What is the manufacturer who makes battery backup sump pumps? There are not as many backup pump manufacturers; therefore the selection is much less than for primary submersible sump pumps.
  • What is the float switch type used for battery backup sump pumps? Most battery backup sump pumps have adjustable vertical floats. Those with tethered float switches require more pit room. Two pumps in one pit may not fit.
  • What are gallons per minute? Battery backup sump pumps do not have the same pumping capability as primary submersible sump pumps. Horsepower does not rate these pumps; thus it is important to know their GPM.
  • What is the construction material used? Most battery backup sump pumps are not made from cast iron because they are used only for emergencies. Usage of cast iron for the housing, volute, and impeller would raise the selling price.
  • What is the warranty? Two years is the average warranty for backup sump pumps. The best way to maximize the benefit of the warranty period is to test the backup pump frequently before the warranty expires.

What does Battery Backup Sump Pump Battery Group Size reveal?

  • Larger Battery Group sizes are used for pumps with greater GPH pumping capability.
  • Using a larger Battery Group size increases the runtime.

What is Battery Back Up Sump Pump Continuous Runtime?

  • Knowing the continuous run time of the backup pump when the battery is fully charged will help you determine if the pump would provide enough basement flood protection in an emergency. You may decide that an additional backup system should be installed. It is wise to plan for the ‘worst case scenario.’
  • Intermittent running could provide days of pumping. The length of time the battery will provide power is dependent upon how frequently the backup pump runs.

What is the Battery Back Up Sump Pump Powered by DC or AC/DC?

  • Some pumps run on both AC (electrical) and DC (battery) power.
  • Battery Backup sump pumps that run on both AC (Alternating current – electrical -wall outlet- power) and DC (Direct current – battery power) are more versatile.
  • If the primary pump fails but the electricity does not, the battery backup sump pump will run on AC. This saves the use of the battery.
  • If the electricity fails, the pump can run on DC (battery power).
  • Battery Backup sump pumps that run only on DC must use battery power to operate.

What is Sump Pump Battery Charger?

  • The Battery charger keeps the battery charged and in ready-state.
  • When the battery is partially or fully drained, the battery charger will recharge the battery.
  • The greater the battery charger amperage the quicker a partially or totally drained battery can be recharged.
  • 2 amp battery charger takes 42 hours to charge a completely drained battery.
  • 10 amp battery charger takes 18 hours to charge a completely drained battery.
  • 20 amp battery charger takes 6-8 hours to charge a completely drained battery.

What is a Battery Back Up Sump Pump Construction Material?

  • The pump housing material is made to slow down the corrosion process.
  • Thermoplastic will not destroy; however, the sump pump is not built to last as long because internal parts are generally thermoplastic as well.
  • Cast iron housing, volute and impeller backup pumps are more durable, sturdy and have a greater pumping GPH.
  • Just because the pump housing is cast iron does not mean the volute and impeller are cast iron. Check out our construction material review, by comparison, to see which sump pumps are all cast iron.
  • Generally, cast iron pumps have replacement parts.
  • When thermoplastic pump parts fail, it is time to buy a new backup sump pump.
  • Cast iron can dissipate motor heat better

Don’t forget to check some very well-written reviews for the best sump pumps.

What is the Battery Back Up Sump Pump Float Switch?

  • The Float Switch is the mechanism that triggers the operation of the pump.
  • Without some trigger, the pump will not operate.
  • Tether float switches require more sump pit diameter and can get caught on something.
  • Vertical float switches are more reliable. They are less likely to get caught and take less sump pit diameter.  Many of them are adjustable.
  • Basement Watchdog (Glentronics) has dual float switches to provide extra protection. When one float switch fails, the other one begins operation.

What is the Battery Back Up Sump Pump Manufacturer?

  • Zoeller has both submersible battery backup sump pumps and pedestal style battery backup sump pumps.
  • Wayne models ESP45 and BSP45 pump housing and volute are cast iron.

Both of these models also run on electricity or battery.

  • The Simer backup sump pump has the shortest continuous runtime of all pumps included.
  • The Hydromatic models provide an area light to illuminate a powerless work area.
  • Flint Walling/Star model SB12DCC pump housing and volute are cast iron.
  • Base Products HydroPump RH1400 sits outside the pit, requires only 6 inches of pit diameter area, and can be hooked up to two batteries to double the runtime.
  • Basement Watchdog and Glentronics PHCC series have dual float switches for double protection. When one float switch fails, the other one takes over.

What is Battery Back Up Sump Pump GPM?

  • Back Up pumps are not rated by HP.
  • Gallons pumped per minute or gallons pumped per hour is the best way to compare primary and back up sump pump capability.
  • If you know the HP of your primary pump and wish to review a comparable back up pump, you can use the following as a guideline.
  • 1/4 HP sump pump output generally ranges between 1500 to 1999 GPH at 10 ft.
  • 1/3 HP sump pump output generally ranges between 2000 to 2499 GPH at 10 ft.
  • 1/2 HP sump pump output generally ranges between 2500 to 3000 GPH at 10 ft.

Facts about Gallons Per Minute

  • Most manufacturers measure gallons pumped by gallons per hour (GPH).
  • Therefore, we are presenting pumping capacity by gallons per hour.
  • If you need to know gallons pumped per minute, divide GPH by 60.
  • The pumping lift varies per pump application. We have chosen a 10 ft lift because that is most common.  If your lift is less than 10 ft, the pumping capacity will increase up to 20% more. For example, at 10 ft lift the StormPro BA33 pumps 50 gallons per minute.  At 5 ft. Lift the StormPro SP3301 pumps 60 gallons per minute.

What is the Battery Back Up Sump Pump Warranty?

  • The warranty provides an opportunity to check the pump after installation to ensure it works properly. Zoeller is the only company that tests each pump before shipment.
  • Testing the backup sump pump periodically will help discover any existing pump defects before the warranty expires.
  • Warranty periods vary by manufacturer.
  • Your receipt for proof of purchase and date of purchase will allow you to claim the warranty.
  • Some manufacturers provide a Registration site to record your proof of purchase.

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