Compare Sump Pump Options
How Much Does a Sump Pump Installation Cost?
Most people only think about sump pumps when they fail - or as soon as they need one and don’t have it. But the best time to start thinking about buying a sump pump or replacing your old one is before an emergency strikes.
If your basement or crawl space is at risk for flooding, make sure you have a sump pump that is in good working order. Remember, it only takes a small amount of water to cause thousands of dollars worth of damage. Wet or damp basements can also lead to mold and mildew, which pose serious health risks.
Types of Sump Pumps
Sump pumps are installed in the lowest part of your basement or crawl space to keep the area dry and prevent flooding. They pump water out of your basement or crawl space and send it away from the home, usually to a storm drain or dry well. Sump pumps are common in areas prone to flooding, and in homes or buildings where the water table is above the foundation.
There are two main types of sump pumps: submersible and pedestal. As the name suggests, submersible pumps go underwater in your sump pump basin. Pedestal pumps are above your sump basin, not in water.
Most sump pumps are hardwired to your home’s electrical system. Some of these electricity-powered pumps have battery backups so that they work during a power outage. Other sump pumps are powered by water pressure from the home or buildings plumbing system. These work in a power outage, too.
Cost of Sump Pump Installation
You can install a sump pump on your own for about $200. However, most people don’t have the experience or expertise to do the job properly. If you don’t know what you’re doing, it’s best to hire a professional.
According to HomeAdvisor (formerly ServiceMagic), most homeowners spend around $850 to $1,200 for sump pump installation, with a national average of about $1,000. However, some spend as little as $350 and others spend more than $1,600. Your geographic location has a lot to do with the price.
Submersible pumps are more expensive than pedestal pumps and they don’t last as long. However, they do a better job at keeping basements free of water because they start pumping before water reaches the floor. Pedestal pumps are fairly inexpensive, but they’re noisy and not as effective.
Choosing a Sump Pump
Pedestal or submersible should be one of your first decisions. Keep in mind that while pedestal versions are much cheaper, they tend to operate only 5 to 15 years. Submersible sump pumps can last up to 30 years. No matter which type you choose, make sure it is approved by the Sump and Sewage Pump Manufacturers Association (SSPMA).
Here are some other factors to consider:
- Voltage - For residential use, a standard 110-volt sump pump should do just fine. Keep in mind that you’ll want a cord long enough to plug directly into an outlet. Never use an extension cord with a sump pump.
- Horsepower - Most sump pumps range from one-quarter to 1 or more horsepower (HP). The rate of pumping is directly related to the horsepower, so you don’t want to end up with a system less powerful than you need. However, a too-powerful system is a waste of money and energy.
- Capacity - Your sump pump is only as effective as its capacity, which is measured in gallons per minute (GPM). Consult a professional if you’re not sure what capacity is appropriate - this is an important decision.
- Backup systems - Battery powered or water pressure powered? Every sump pump has a backup system for extra protection, and that system will turn on automatically if the main pump fails. With a water-powered system, you don’t have to worry about whether the battery is charged. However, water-powered system cannot handle heavy water pressure.
- Materials - Be sure the sump pump is made of a corrosion-free material, particularly if it is submersible. Material choices include bronze, stainless steel and epoxy-coated cast iron.