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Sump Pump Basics

clock September 21, 2011 19:44 by author blogadmin
A sealed sump pump system is a waterproofing solution that protects your home, including your basement, from flooding.

What Is A Sump Pump?

sump pumpsOne of the best options for homeowners to tackle the problem of a wet basement and water damage is by using a sump pump. A heavy duty sump pump in a sealed sump pit positioned in a home’s basement will sends water out to a more acceptable location, like a sloped lawn or a municipal storm drain. This type of high efficiency sump pump and sealed sump pit or sump liner is designed as a reservoir for excess groundwater and rainwater.

The principles at work are pretty simple: rather than keeping water out completely, a sump pump system controls how water gathers beneath your home, then pumps it out after it’s collected, while preventing moisture levels in the home to rise.

If you’ve explored other ways of keeping your basement dry – examining the grading around your home, injecting cracks and repairing any noticeable leaks or broken pipes – and are still having trouble, it might be time to consider a sump pump system.

Remember, sump pumps don’t prevent water from accumulating, but they can go a long way in controlling water in your basement. Either way, your possessions stay dry and your family’s health is not compromised, which is the point.

Many homes already have sump pits built right into the basement floor. The problem is most of them are inadequate and cause as many problems as they solve. If this is the case, you will need to have a basement waterproofing professional install a sealed sump pit, like the ECP Sealed Sump Basin. If your home is not equipped with a sump pit, a waterproofing contractor should be able to tell you if it’s possible to retrofit your basement.

Types of Sump Pumps

There are three types of pumps used in basements or crawl spaces:

Pedestal Sump Pump:Also referred to as a “column type” or “upright” sump pump, the pedestal sump pump has an open motor that is supported on top of a column attached to the pump casing. When installed, the motor sits outside the sump and above the basement floor. The motor is not designed to be submerged in water. This type of sump pump system cannot be sealed.

Submersible Primary Sump Pump: This pump uses a watertight motor designed to be immersed in water, and will typically kick into action when it senses that it’s become submerged. The motor is coupled directly to the sump pump casing and is designed to be completely hidden within a sealed sump pit.

Primary Sump Pump with Battery Backup: Submersible primary sump pumps with a DC battery backup pump provide the ultimate protection to homes. During heavy storms, when sump pumps are needed the most, electrical power can go out. In this case the sump pump becomes useless due to lack of power. When equipped with a battery backup, your sump pump system can continue to provide protection to your home.

A Working System

So what does a functioning high quality sump pump system look like? There are usually four key pieces:

• A Primary Pump

• An Emergency Backup Pump

• An Emergency Backup Pump Alarm

• A Sealed Sump Pit

Because homes sometimes lose power during thunderstorms – just when an operational sump pump is critical – a quality sump system employs a backup pump. Emergency battery backup pumps work when the power goes out, when the primary pump does not remove the water fast enough, or if the primary sump pump fails.

In this setup, primary pumps are powered with electricity, and backup pumps are battery powered. Using two pumps instead of one makes it unlikely that both pumps will malfunction at the same time. And with the alarm system, you’ll be able to tell when the primary pump has failed and the backup pump has to be used.

Is A Sump Pump Right For You?

Installing a new sump pump system – especially if your basement doesn’t already have a built-in sealed sump pit – is an extensive, complex job. Make sure you consult with a waterproofing expert.

To find out more about particular pumps for your basement, or to check if a certain pump is certified, consult the Sump & Sewage Pump Manufacturers Association.



Foundation Repair Piering

clock September 9, 2011 12:49 by author blogadmin
Hot and dry weather causes foundation problems and steel push piers solve them. Get a free estimate for settlement issues today!

Foundation Repair Using a Piering System

 

 

The dry weather has a hold on much o the Midwest and many homes and homeowners are feeling its effects.Foundation repair, steel push pier Foundation repairs and hot/dry weather go hand and hand. As many soils dry, they tend to consolidate and this consolidation causes home foundations to sink. The first signs can be drywall cracking, exterior brick cracks and misalignment of doors and windows.

To stop this, homeowners need to look to the engineering community and quality foundation repair contractors that understand the benefits of steel push piers that are designed and engineered to perform.

Small, quiet and vibration free hydraulic equipment is used to install the steel push piers, also known as resistance piers. Piers, like the ECP Steel Pier System is designed to drive deeply through soils and bear on rock or other load bearing material. As soils shrink, from the summer heat, steel piers will support the homes foundation keeping the structure stable and crack free. The galvanized steel pipe used in the ECP Steel Pier System will provide many years of support, even in wet or corrosive areas.

Earth Contact Products (ECP), is the leading manufacturer of foundation repair and basement waterproofing products made in the industry. The steel piers belong to a family of patented foundatio repair products. These piers are the top choice for foundation repair used by contractors. Each pier is load tested after it is installed. The piers are able to develop a factor of safety because the piers are installed and load tested individually using the maximum weight of the structure as the reaction force. During the load transfer, high pressure hydraulic jacks are placed at many locations, reducing the load on each pier. 

Piering Systems

Many other pier systems may look like or are promoted to be “as good as” the best steel pier system but fall short on many fronts. Some systems drive concrete cylinders very shallowly into the soil and try to provide support for homes. During dry season the short comings of concrete cylinders become obvious. First, as the soil dry’s it shrinks and pulls away from the cylinders much the same way you notice that the soil around your home pulls away from your foundation. This causes settlement and cracking throughout your home. This shallow piering method is not a long term solution to supporting your home.

Other pier systems use un-galvanized pipe or low pressure hydraulic systems that cannot drive the pier pipe nearly deep enough. Many systems also use bottle jacks (simple car jacks) in an attempt to drive pier pipe or to lift a home. Bottle jacks simply are not designed for this type of application. Many times they can create more damage to the home than was originally found.

Simply, your home is probably your most valuable asset – don’t settle for inferior pier systems to be used to support your home. Demand that your foundation repair contractor use the best designed and engineered products like the ECP Steel Pier System. Your home is worth it and you will not have to worry about future foundation repair problems.

 



Sources of Basement Water Leaks

clock September 6, 2011 16:33 by author blogadmin
Clogged gutters and wall cracks lead to basement water leaks. Know what is causing your water issues so you can identify the source of the problem.

Basement Water Leaks

Basement waterproofing, wall cracksWhere is the water coming from? Basement water leaks can be elusive at times. The following will help you narrow down the source of your leak and guide you toward the best way to seal your basement.

1. Do you get the water after all rains or just on the heavy rains? If it doesn’t matter on the severity of the rain, and you experience seepage on a light rain or on a heavy downpour, you probably have an issue with your runoff grading or downspouts and gutters. If your basement is unaffected by the light and quick rains, but floods during prolonged storms, heavy downpours, or multiple days of rain, you most likely are dealing with the water table rising up due to the ground getting saturated and having no place to go except through cracks and openings in your basement.

2. Do you get water as soon as it starts to rain or does it come in the next day or hours after the rain has stopped? If the seepage occurs within 30 minutes or less of when it starts to rain, you most likely have an exterior problem. Once again, check your grading, downspouts and gutters and make sure the water is directed away from the house and gutters are clean. If it takes many hours or even the following day and you see moisture or puddles on the floor, this points to the water table taking its time rising up from below your basement floor and seeping in.

3. Does the water come from where the floor and the wall meet or does it come down the wall starting at eye level? When water comes from the wall at eye level and runs down the basement wall you most likely have an exterior problem. Eye level should typically coincide with where the grade meets the exterior of the house. If the water comes in where the floor meets the wall, this suggests the hydrostatic pressure from the water table underneath the basement slab and over saturated soils.

If your answer to these questions all lead to the water table being the source of your seepage, then the one and only way to permanently fix the problem is to install an sealed interior drain system. These interior drain tile systems are one of the more important aspects to keeping moisture from entering your home. This sealed interior drain system uses the most effective approach by using a perforated drain pipe that is installed inside the perimeter of the footing. They are building code approved when installed and sealed correctly by one of our professonals. The drain pipe drains the area to a lower level. 

Waterproofing Steps

Water problems are the main cause for foundation problems. Knowing the cause of water leaks will lead to the solutions needed to waterproofing your home. Determine if it is an interior or exterior problem. On the exterior, make sure the soil is properly graded areound the periometer of your home. If it is not, you may need re-grading or surface drainage installation. Check gutters and downspouts to make sure the run-off is draining away from the home. Look at the exterior concrete and make sure the concrete is not falling toward the home. If it is, the concrete may need to be taken out and replaced. Basements and crawlspaces also need an exterior drainage system next to footing. Sump pumps should be installed and determining the correct size of the sump pump is critical. It it is too small, it won't keep up with the amount of water coming in. A pump that is too big is also a problem because it will pump water so fast that the pump will 'short cycle' which will cause it to fail and replacement needed. Let a professional help you to determine what waterproofing solution is needed for your particular water problems. 

For a Free Estimate visit MyWaterproofing.com



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