Sump pumps are a must in areas of high rainfall and where there’s a high water table. No homeowner with a basement should be without one. Sump pumps in our region can get a workout, and that means you need to be mindful of maintenance. Among the problems you may encounter are sump pump odors. Here’s how to deal with them.
Troubleshooting Sump Pump Odors
If you’ve been beset by odors from your sump pump, here’s what may be going on. There’s a trap in the pump designed to hold water so that sewage gas doesn’t back up and enter your home. During a dry spell, and particularly if the drain hasn’t been used in a while, the water in that trap may have evaporated, and the gas has escaped. That’s likely the odor you are smelling.
To prevent this condition, try to always keep a little water in the trap — enough to cover drain lines and outgoing pipes. To dispel the odor, dilute bleach (a cup per gallon of water), and pour it into the basin until the float switch is activated. Also, scrubbing the sides of the basin will help.
Occasionally you may need to troubleshoot your sump pump. If it’s not running, is it plugged in? Plugs may disconnect due to vibrations or water action as it ebbs and flows. Check for a blown fuse as well. Because sump pumps are located by water, you’re bound to have a ground fault interrupter (GFI) switch. Check to see if it has tripped. If the pump has been dry for a while, try pouring water in the well to prime it.
Electrical outage in a thunderstorm obviously will turn off the sump pump. Invest in a backup battery. Gel-packs may be sufficient to power the sump pump so it can work without electricity from the home. This is also a good solution for when you’re away from home.
Learn how the pros at Carefree Comfort, Inc. Heating and Air Conditioning can help with sump pump odors, or contact us today at 847-388-0115 to schedule a service for your sump pump.