Backup Sump Pump Question

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by rdgallo, Dec 12, 2008.

  1. rdgallo

    rdgallo New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Morton, Illinois
    I have a Zoeller Basement Sentry Series Model 507 pump installed in my sump pit along with the regular Zoeller Sump pump. I moved into to this house about 2 months ago and was just recently reading the info on the back up pump. It says to test the backup pump every 3 months to assure it still works correctly. Last night I tried to do that. I unplugged the regular sump pump and the backup pump battery charger and began dumping buckets of water into the sump. After numerous buckets of water and no activation of the backup pump, I got a flashlight and looked into the pit. This back up pump is mounted into a tee on the 1 and 1/2 inch pvc and is actually slightly above the lower part of the tile drain pipe that drains into the sump. If I am looking at it correctly, the sump would have to fill with water all the way up to the tile drain (water inlet to the sump) and then back fill this pip and the tile before water in the sump pit would ever get high enough to kick in the back up pump. This does not seem right to me. Once the tile starts backing up with water, won't that create a problem? I took the cover off of the sump pit today and I see no way the backup pump could be mounted any lower and still clear the top of the main pump. Am I seeing this set up all wrong or is the backup as installed virtually worthless?
    Thanks,
    Ron
  2. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Can you post a pic?
  3. rdgallo

    rdgallo New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Morton, Illinois
    I will try to post a pic as soon as I can get the cover off again. I have a heck of a time getting the cover off as I have some knee issues that keep me from doing much crawling around, but I will give it a shot soon.
    Thanks,
    Ron
  4. rdgallo

    rdgallo New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Morton, Illinois
    I know I haven't posted any pictures, but does anyone have any thoughts on this?
    Thanks
  5. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Not yet! I'd like to see it!
  6. It is installed right

    the unit is installed correctly...above the flood rim
    of the water.....

    if you install that wimpy back up pump
    down in the water it cannot withstand the elements and
    sediments in the water...


    It will seize up the first time you try to start it
    after sitting dormant in the water....for less than 6 months...


    you cant expect a little plastic pump to sit in the
    bottom of a sump pit for 2 years and then
    be expected to come to life and run a marathon.....



    your unit is installed properly for what it is....

    here is a pic of a "sumpo pro" that I recdently had
    to tear out becasue it was incorrectly installed..

    notice how both of the pumps have Indiana Lme built
    up on the outer caseing of them....



    the sump pro is actually a heavier duty pump over the little Zoeller
    unit you have , and I dont suggest installine either of them
    to be pernamantly down in the water....




    [​IMG] http://www.weilhammerplumbing.com/sumppumps/
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2008
  7. rdgallo

    rdgallo New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Morton, Illinois
    Thanks for the info. I know the wimpy pump is not designed to be submerged. I was basically asking if the fact that it is installed above the tile drain incoming line was a problem. Seems to me all the drain tile would have to fill before the sump would fill high enough to kick on this wimpy pump. I guess that is the way it is designed from what you have told me.
    Thanks,
    Ron
  8. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,453
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I would mount it as low as possible in the pit without water ever touching it during normal operation. The small pump needs the head start and you need the notification that your main pump has failed as early as possible.
  9. rdgallo

    rdgallo New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Morton, Illinois
    Thanks, Redwood.
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