Monthly Archives: June 2013

Sump Pump Maintenance Tips

Sump pumps protect homes from flooding and water damage by rising groundwater and accumulated water due to surface run off. Without their protection, homes can be susceptible to not only basement flooding, but also moisture accumulation within the interior of the home that can lead to water damage and dangerous mold. It is easy to forget how much you rely on these devices until they stop working, which is why it is important to keep up on their maintenance.

Maintenance Tips
Just like any type of power equipment, a sump pump needs regular maintenance to perform properly. Sump pumps are self-activating or automatic, turning on when the sensors detect water at a certain level. If not maintained, these pumps can become clogged or jammed and not able to remove water when needed. Some maintenance tips to ensure sump pumps are kept in good working order include:

- Remove excess debris. Although sump pumps will have a screen to keep dirt and other debris out of the pump, these screens can become clogged if not cleaned regularly. These screens should be checked throughout the year, more often in pumps that are constantly running.
- Annual performance tests. Sump pumps should be tested at least once a year and whenever a home is sold. Performance tests can be done by adding water to the pit to ensure that pump turns on and removes the water.
- Check movement of float device. The float device must move up and down to allow the pump to detect water. If it becomes jammed and stuck in one position, the pump will not work correctly. Caution: Never reach into the pit to test the float.

Many homeowners choose to have a professional perform their annual maintenance on their sump pumps, although many do-it-yourself homeowners do the routine check-up on their own. However, if the sump pump is not working correctly, a professional may be needed to fix the problem before it leads to water damage or flooding in the home.

Time For Plumbing Check-ups

Winter can be tough on many plumbing fixtures with fluctuations in temperature and outside debris can clog gutter systems and the plumbing vents needed for most home plumbing. Today is a great time to do a plumbing check-up on your home to ensure that no damage was caused through the winter and get everything ready for the summer months.

Interior Check Points
There are several areas that should be inspected for wear and tear after the winter months. Preventive maintenance is always a better option than waiting for something to break, causing both inconvenience and possibly even water damage. Some areas that should be checked each spring in the interior of your home are:

- Check all exposed pipes. Often small leaks may have sprung from contracting and expanding pipes and gaskets due to temperature changes throughout the cold winter months. Doing a quick check on all visible pipes with the water on is a good way to find any slow leaks that may need fixing.
- Replace faucet gaskets as needed. Gaskets in faucet heads are the number one culprit of leaky faucets and are an easy fix. Check the base of all faucets for leaks and replace gaskets as needed.
- Check all large plumbing fixtures. Spring is as good of a time as any to make sure your large plumbing fixtures such as your water heater, washer and toilet are all in good working order.

Exterior Check Points
Although the majority of your plumbing is inside, there are a few items that need attention on the exterior of your home as well. Winter weather can cause cracks and leak issues with outside water faucets, even when properly insulated. Another area that should be checked is the plumbing vents on your roof. These may get clogged with debris from winter storms and need cleaning.

A basic check-up on all your plumbing today can save you time and money later on in the summer, when most of us have better things to do. Get any issues fixed now so they do not interfere with your summer fun! Of course, we’ll be happy to come and do a service checkup for you. Just give us a call (204)944-3444!