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Old 09-10-2008, 01:36 PM   #1
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stairwell drain backup


Our outside basement stairwell has a floor drain that emptys into the city main sewer pipe. Flooding occurs when there is too much rain and the drain cannot handle it. The city sewer will backup and send sewage into my stairwell. It will get into the house. 10 inches in the past.

Can I tap off the drain pipe to the city sewer and then put a sump pump in my stairwell to take care of the rain, pumping it up 8 stairs to the yard?

The drain hole is small so I guess that it would have to be made large so that the pump could go in, or can the pump just sit at the bottom of the stairwell? I am concerned about uses a jack hammer since the stair well is made with brick walls and the force might camage them , 54 yrs old house.

thank you. mary

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Old 09-10-2008, 05:43 PM   #2
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stairwell drain backup


the sump pump is what i would do if it were my house. but the only problem is the pump and pit freezing. so it kinda depends on where you live. if it dosnt freeze where you live than you should be fine. you would have to have a pit installed and you seem woried about the brick. a concrete coring company would be able to cut the hole thru the concrete using a diamond blade without the use of a jack hammer. if it freezes in your are you might be able to dig the pit below the frost line but i would be woried about the residual water in the pvc expanding and bursting your lines.

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Old 09-10-2008, 06:07 PM   #3
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stairwell drain backup


Thank you KC Brick Layer for the good advice. I live in VA and at times we do have a freeze. Is there a possiblity of removing the sump pump in the winter? I usually only have backup during the spring, summer and fall, when the rains are heavy. Thank you for the idea with the diamond blade with a concrete company.

What size sump pump would have the strength to pump up 8 stairs to the yard?
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Old 09-11-2008, 06:44 AM   #4
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stairwell drain backup


traditional sump pumps will not handle solid waste, for that you would need a special waste pump which is pretty big with the associated housing.
I would simply cap the pipe. Why would you continue to have this happen?
If you can't keep water out of this area, then install a traditional sump pump. Just be aware the the higher the water is pumped the less capacity the pump has. A pump that states 3150 gals per hour with no lift, will drop to 1410 at a 15 ft. height and zero gallons at 20 feet. These were specs from a Flotec 1/3 hp unit I just put in a customers house. It only requires a 10" diameter sump pit.
At 8 steps, about 5 feet, you could still pump out 2760 gal per hour. There are other companies that make a narrow pit pump. Check out the local Big Box stores.
Ron
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Old 09-11-2008, 07:19 AM   #5
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stairwell drain backup


Ron, thank you for your helpful information. After I cap the sewer pipe off, the rain water flow from a half moon drain hole that comes from the side wall of the stairwell. It relieves water from under the brick porch that is built on a slab.

So I guess the answer will have to be cap off the pipe and put i a sump pump. And hopefully, it won't freeze here in VA.

I have a check valve, but with this drain from the stairwell working hard during a storm, it keeps the water flowing and the check valve remians open. That's the problem.
Thank you
mary
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Old 09-11-2008, 07:28 AM   #6
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stairwell drain backup


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
traditional sump pumps will not handle solid waste, for that you would need a special waste pump which is pretty big with the associated housing.
I would simply cap the pipe. Why would you continue to have this happen?
If you can't keep water out of this area, then install a traditional sump pump. Just be aware the the higher the water is pumped the less capacity the pump has. A pump that states 3150 gals per hour with no lift, will drop to 1410 at a 15 ft. height and zero gallons at 20 feet. These were specs from a Flotec 1/3 hp unit I just put in a customers house. It only requires a 10" diameter sump pit.
At 8 steps, about 5 feet, you could still pump out 2760 gal per hour. There are other companies that make a narrow pit pump. Check out the local Big Box stores.
Ron
What made you decide on a 1/3 hp pump vice a 1/2 hp pump for your customer?
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Old 09-11-2008, 08:06 AM   #7
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stairwell drain backup


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What made you decide on a 1/3 hp pump vice a 1/2 hp pump for your customer?
The pump is in a window well ,under a bay window, covered with 1/4" plexiglass, so little or no water gets in. It is like a third backup, just in case water does get in. I didn't see the need to spend the extra money for the 1/2 hp unit.
I did put in a 1/2hp unit in for another customer who had a location that received much more water on a regular basis.
Jobs vary from case to case. I modify what's needed in each case. There are no universal solutions.
Ron
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Old 09-11-2008, 11:23 PM   #8
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stairwell drain backup


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Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
The pump is in a window well ,under a bay window, covered with 1/4" plexiglass, so little or no water gets in. It is like a third backup, just in case water does get in. I didn't see the need to spend the extra money for the 1/2 hp unit.
I did put in a 1/2hp unit in for another customer who had a location that received much more water on a regular basis.
Jobs vary from case to case. I modify what's needed in each case. There are no universal solutions.
Ron
My current sump is 1/3 hp, but it has a tethered float and I plan on replacing it with a model that has the vertical float. The vertical float will allow it to initiate faster.

My sump pit is right next to the wall where the outlet for the sump is located. It fills during a rainstorm at a moderate level.

Do you think buying a 1/3 hp with the vertical float should suffice? I don't think I need a 1/2 hp model.

I also have a battery powered backup pump in the same pit.

When/if you install these backup systems, do you run a dedicated outlet, or just Y it into the existing outlet pipe for the main pump?

How often should sump pits be checked for dirt and debris to be cleaned out?

Last edited by handy man88; 09-11-2008 at 11:53 PM.
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Old 09-12-2008, 06:29 PM   #9
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stairwell drain backup


Quote:
Originally Posted by handy man88 View Post
My current sump is 1/3 hp, but it has a tethered float and I plan on replacing it with a model that has the vertical float. The vertical float will allow it to initiate faster.

My sump pit is right next to the wall where the outlet for the sump is located. It fills during a rainstorm at a moderate level.

Do you think buying a 1/3 hp with the vertical float should suffice? I don't think I need a 1/2 hp model.

I also have a battery powered backup pump in the same pit.

When/if you install these backup systems, do you run a dedicated outlet, or just Y it into the existing outlet pipe for the main pump?

How often should sump pits be checked for dirt and debris to be cleaned out?
These pumps are not associated with another unit, they are dedicated units. Both of them are outside so they need to be checked at least once a year for proper operation. Interior installed units, mounted in a gravel pit would still need to be checked at least once a year.
As stated previuosly, the 1/3 hp unit operates occasionally. The 1/2 hp unit operates substantially more, so I thought the extra hp was worth the cost.
The draw of these motors didn't require a separate line, just ones that were GFCI protected.
Ron

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