Why Backup Sump Pumps are So Important

"My sump pump is new and works great, why do I need two of them?"
"My power never goes out, do I still need a backup pump?"
"My neighborhood has a low water table and never floods. I should be okay without a backup, right?"

If you've ever found yourself asking those questions, you're not alone, and we're here to provide answers. In this post, we'll outline a few situations in which a backup pump will save you.

Power Outages

While a primary pump runs on electricity, a backup pump is powered by either a battery or water pressure. This is perfect for an event like a power outage or a tripped circuit breaker; when your primary pump loses access to electricity and stops working, your backup pump will take over without skipping a beat.

Storms that cause basements to flood are often strong enough to knock out the power, rendering your primary sump pump completely useless right when you need it the most. And although unlikely, emergencies like a blown transformer somewhere in your neighborhood can happen, leaving your home vulnerable to flooding. So even if your home rarely loses power, it's still a good idea to be prepared for a power outage.

Primary Pump Malfunctions

Just like any other mechanical device, your sump pump is not going to last forever. After years of pumping water out of your basement, the sump pump's motor will eventually burn out. And before that happens, a number of other things can go wrong that will cause the pump to stop working: debris entering and clogging the pump, a stuck or tangled float switch, electrical problems, and more. Even something as simple as leaves getting into the sump can cause problems.

A backup sump pump ensures that if any of these things happen, your basement will stay dry until you replace or repair the primary pump.


In certain emergency flooding situations, like melting snow followed by heavy rain, sometimes the large influx of water into your sump is just too much for your sump pump to keep up with on its own. A sump pump can even completely burn itself out by working too hard. The backup assists the primary pump in these situations, lessening the load on your primary pump and extending its life as well as keeping the water in the sump at a safe level.

Still not convinced? Even if your basement is only used for utility, things like water heaters, furnaces, and washers/dryers can short out when exposed to a flood. Not only that, standing water rots wood, promotes mold and mildew growth, and has potential to cause serious water damage. Don't take the risk! If you need help installing a backup sump pump, or your primary pump needs maintenance or repair, call us at (586) 459-0040. We're even available 24/7 in case your sump pump fails in the middle of the night.