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Old 11-01-2011, 08:51 AM   #16
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Not sure about the high water table. Don't think so, as this is a seasonal issue at worst. Currently, the pump has to run every 15-30 minutes. There are times when it doesn't run at all for weeks.


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Old 11-01-2011, 09:03 AM   #17
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the gas in a generator goes as the load goes...being in their 80s is minimal with the pump,refrig and heating being the loads a 3500 watt would cover them including the lighting and TVs.maybe have a local DIYer check on them checking the oil and gas.the tanks on the generators can go for 8 hour even more filled 4-5 gallons before needing checking with the demand they would need.....storing and pouring the gas is the problem.being older they feel anything below 60F as being cold....have the generator wired into the house panel so the entire house runs as normal

Last edited by biggles; 11-01-2011 at 09:14 AM.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:10 AM   #18
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Why isn't there already a battery back-up system in the sump crock? The back-up has it's limits, but even a cheaper set-up with one battery can run 10-20 hours. Add a few batteries with higher reserve, and you could probably get days out of it.

I'd also consider calling an excavator to have them see if installing a new footing drain to daylight is feasible. This is by far the simplest approach long term, with no moving parts, fuel, noise, nothing. If the current one isn't working, install a new one if it will work out with elevations.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:14 AM   #19
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walker, if they still have a conventional landline, get a autodialer with a water sensor to call you, if there happens to be a possibility of water overflow. Here is something that would help you know if there is a problem, if far away;_ylt=...&cop=&ei=UTF-8

With the generac's, you can get remote monitoring software for them, same with the Kohler's Since this home is rural, and if they ever sell, it would be a plus for someone, that ever buys it.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:18 AM   #20
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Thanks. Fortunately, they have plenty of wood for the fireplace and camping gear (stove, etc). They are from the depression era and fight spending any money even though they could easily afford it. They have a generator my dad refurbished (probably pre WWII) that runs the sump pump now (and nothing else). He is just afraid to leave it running and restarts it (pull) every time he has to use it. They run the car to charge the cel phone.

I am looking for a cost effective, long term solution. It appears that the LP generator is about it, huh?
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:23 AM   #21
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Their argument would be the landline is out too.
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:27 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by walkergetx View Post
Thanks Ron. I am no electrician, so I have no concept of 50% load, the way generators are rated. Is that a good average?

I repeat - well water - not city water. They built 50+ years ago when it was very rural.

Like the solar panel idea except for snow, which is what they have now.
Even without the solar panel I still suggest a 12 system. The power company power would keep the batteries charged until an outage and then the pump would kick on automatically and give them at least 1 day backup for them to realize the power is off and get home to start the generator
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:42 AM   #23
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How 'bout wind turbine with deep cycle batteries and a marine bilge pump as a backup? If the power is out odds are there will be wind! Not as efficient as a sump pump but will do in a pinch. Bilge pumps are made to run off low power cuz most boats don't have 10k watt gennys.
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Old 11-01-2011, 11:17 AM   #24
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Interesting guys! Thanks for helping think outside the box.
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Old 11-01-2011, 06:16 PM   #25
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Someone above mentioned a battery-powered sump pump. I think I saw something like that in Lowes or HD, but here's a link to a supplier.

Some even come with a trickle charger to keep to keep the battery topped up all the time. Seems to me that one of these would be a lot less maintenance than a portable generator. Perhaps a lot less expensive too, but of course it would depend on the GPH that would be needed.


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