If you experience flooding on a regular basis, then you know the value of having a high-quality sump pump. These machines can help keep your spaces dry all year long, even when the weather is conspiring against you.
But what happens if your sump pump fails? What if the power goes out and it shuts off? If that happens, you could be looking at a nasty situation that could create a lot of problems for you. Fortunately, having the best battery backup sump pump may be the answer.
Today we’re going to take a deep dive into the world of battery backup sump pumps - how they work, why you need them, and which model may be right for you. Don’t let your basement or crawlspace get flooded again!
A battery backup sump pump is a secondary device that can kick in when your primary pump fails. Failure can happen as a result of a power outage, or if the system is overloaded with too much water (i.e., during heavy rains), a backup pump can alleviate the problem and ensure that your spaces stay dry.
The reason you want to get a battery operated unit is that it will run when the power goes out. Because you don’t want to wait until you have electricity to start pumping water, it’s imperative that you have a backup that can keep going at all times.
1. WAYNE ESP25
Two-year limited warranty
2. WAYNE WSS30V
Five-year limited warranty
3. Basement Watchdog
Two-year limited warranty
4. Superior Pump 92900
5. Zoeller 507-0005
One-year limited warranty
When it comes to water pumps, we believe that Wayne is one of the best brands out there. This manufacturer makes models of all sizes, from those that can drain your basement in a couple of hours to small pumps for aquariums and ponds. In every case, you can rely on the machine to do the job well.
In this case, we have a high-powered backup sump pump that can remove up to 3300 gallons of water hour. Thus, if you’re trying to keep a large basement or indoor space dry, this is an excellent choice.
What we like most about this sump pump is that it comes with a smart charging system. While it doesn’t operate directly from AC power (your outlet), it will charge the battery efficiently so that it won’t wear down quickly. If you install a sealed model, you shouldn’t have to worry about this pump for a long time. Best of all, it has a two-year limited warranty to add to your peace of mind.
One problem with buying sump pumps and backups separately is that you can’t always be sure that they will work well together, if they are even compatible at all. Fortunately, there are dual units like this one from Wayne that help make the buying process even easier.
In this case, you get both a primary and a backup pump in one. This means that you can install both at the same time and that you can always be sure that you have one of them active at all times.
One element that helps make this system last is the top-level suction. This setup helps reduce clogging by filtering debris and keeping it out of the internal mechanisms. It’s also made of rust and corrosion-resistant cast iron, which helps it stay in excellent shape.
This pump can remove up to 4200 gallons of water per hour, and it comes with a remarkable five-year limited warranty.
One issue that you may have experienced with your sump pumps is that it can be hard to tell if there’s an issue with it. If you’re not familiar with the internal components of your system, how can you know if a problem arises, such as the battery being low?
Fortunately, this model from Basement Watchdog Emergency provides you with a detailed warning indicator. A set of lights will tell you when the pump is on and
working, when the battery needs maintenance (i.e., a water top-off), and if everything is looking good. Overall, you don’t have to do any detective work with this pump, making it far more convenient than other systems we’ve seen.
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In some cases, you may not need a high-powered system to keep your basement or crawlspace dry. If you have limited space, then you will want a compact and low-energy system like this one from Superior Pump.
One thing we like about this model is that it comes with an internal alarm. It activates when the pump does so that you always know when it’s working. Also, the signal will beep when the battery gets low, so you never have to guess how much juice is left.
One issue with smaller pump systems is that they don’t have a reliable way of recharging the battery. Fortunately, this unit from Zoeller has you covered by including a battery charger with the pump itself. While the charger helps ensure that your system is always ready to go, we appreciate the fact that it also comes with overcharge and burnout protection as well.
As with other pumps, this one comes with an internal alarm that sounds when the unit activates. It’s an excellent choice for smaller crawl spaces and basements, and it’s super easy to install as well. It comes with a one-year limited warranty, and it’s built to resist corrosion and rust.
We’ve already seen a few compact backup sump pumps, but most of them are not designed to work for extended periods. If you’re trying to maintain a small crawlspace or basement, that may not be an issue, but we prefer to have a system that is both reliable and long-lasting.
This pump from Hi & Dry is built better than most other models on the market. It
has rugged components that resist rust and corrosion, and the design of the system ensures that it doesn’t get worn down quickly.
The pump itself is not inside the water, which helps extend its life. Also, it will drain the tank all the way, rather than a few inches like most other units. With a flow rate of 1400 gallons per hour and a four-year limited warranty, you will love this pump as much as we do.
Because we’re looking at battery-operated backup pumps, one of the most critical elements will be the quality of the battery it has. When checking out different models, you will notice that a lot of them highlight the fact that they are low-maintenance or that they are maintenance-free.
However, we want you to understand what’s going on inside the battery so that you can make the right decision for your needs. Here are some common elements to pay attention to when picking out the right battery backup sump pump.
When looking at various models, you may notice that a lot of them resemble a standard car battery. However, one thing to remember is that if your backup pump activates, it will drain the unit, forcing you to recharge it. With most batteries, this constant use and reuse wears down the internal components, meaning that you have to change it more often.
Deep cycle batteries, however, are designed for this. So, when choosing a model, you will want to make sure that it is rated for deep cycle use. Typically, batteries that are built for RVs and boats will be deep cycle, so look for units that are designed for those situations.
Typically speaking, a battery backup sump pump will only kick in when the power shuts off. However, you can also buy a model that will activate if your regular sump pump isn’t working properly (or is overflowing). In that case, you don’t want to be running off of battery power if you don’t have to.
The primary danger of doing this is that you could forget to recharge the unit (particularly if you weren’t aware that it was working), meaning that it may be dead when you need it most.
Some models are designed to draw electricity when it’s available and keep the battery charged as a reserve. Thus, you never have to worry about experiencing flooding because your backup was out of juice.
For the most part, new batteries are fully sealed. However, you can still find “wet cell” versions that require distilled water every so often to ensure that the internal components don’t dry out. While these batteries can be more affordable than higher-end versions, it’s usually not worth the added maintenance. For example, if you forget to check the battery and it runs dry, the system could short out.
There are two types of sealed batteries - absorbed glass mat (AGM) and gel. Both of these versions are excellent because they require no input from you, and they are built to last a long time without corroding or wearing down. Overall, what matters most is the manufacturer, as that will dictate how well the unit performs. Thus, if you buy a cheaper model from a brand you don’t know, you could be creating problems for yourself down the road.
When you picked out your sump pump, one of the first things you should have paid attention to was the flow rate. The reason that this is so crucial is that it ensures your interior spaces can be kept dry at all times. If you have a pump with a flow rate that doesn’t keep up with the size of the area, then there’s almost no point in having one.
Unfortunately, one mistake that many people make is choosing a battery backup sump pump that is not the same size as their original version. Because it’s a backup and won’t be used as often, users believe that they can get away with a smaller model.
However, if your primary pump fails, then why are you going to choose something that can’t keep up? If you have a backup with a substantially lower flow rate, you will still experience flooding, even if it’s only handling the overflow. Overall, you should try to match your current sump pump if possible to avoid this issue.
If you want your backup sump pump to activate when your regular unit is overwhelmed, then one of the best ways to do that is with a float switch. This mechanism will sense when there’s too much water and ensure that your backup kicks into gear. If you want to make the most out of your float switch, you’ll make sure that your pump can run on electricity as well as a battery. That way you don’t have to worry about draining it.
If you have a sump pump in your home already, then it’s always a good idea to have a backup. However, if you notice that your sump pump rarely gets used, then you may be able to forgo installing a secondary unit.
Anyone who still experiences flooding with a sump pump already in place should automatically have a battery backup model to help cover the overflow and protect the property at all times.
When choosing the best battery backup sump pump, you have to be sure that it will work well in your situation. Thus, we want to provide you with our top picks for both large and small areas so that you’re prepared in either case.
For Large Basements: you can’t go wrong with the Wayne ESP25. It has an incredible flow rate, and the smart charger will ensure that your system stays in good shape for years to come. If you don’t have a sump pump already, then you may prefer to get the two-in-one model instead.
For Small Basements: we like the compact unit from Hi & Dry. The construction and design of the pump are clever, and it will ensure that you don’t have to worry about it at all.