1 Sump Pump No Longer Running, The Other Now Runs Majority Of Time - Building & Construction - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum
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Old 06-11-2014, 08:58 PM   #1
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1 Sump Pump No Longer Running, The Other Now Runs Majority of Time


Not sure if this is the right sub-forum for this question, or what to name the thread for that matter...but having a weird issue.

In the front corner of our home's basement we have a sump pump (utility room), in the back left we have an ejector pit (septic), and in the back right we have another sump pump.

Since we bought the home (new in 1992), and for the longest time, the front sump pump in the utility room operated as the "main" pump. I would only hear the back right corner basement sump pump activate during really heavy rains.

The last few years, I've noticed that the front utility room sump pump doesn't run at all (yes, it works, and replaced the pump and back-up pump system last year for good measure). The hole simply doesn't fill with water.

However, the back right sump pump does all the work now. During any rains, it's the only one that operates, and even during dry spells every once in a while it will operate. It's basically became the "main" pump, and the other pump does not do any work anymore.

Any idea what could be causing this? Water levels in the ground changing? Earth movement? Something else?

We are built on what was pretty wet land. There's a natural spring in our backyard that is contained by a man made pond. That pond was built when they split this "wet" land into 5 lots, built 5 homes, and dug the pond to contain the water. Any runoff from that pond goes do a sewer, but the pond seems to be dryer now than it has been in years past (even with the record snow falls we had this winter).
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Old 06-11-2014, 09:17 PM   #2
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All of the things you suggested could be the cause of the problem, it's extremely difficult to tell. Does the sump pump that is working have to run very often or just occasionally? If it's just occasionally and it's keeping up without any issues I really wouldn't worry about it.
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Old 06-11-2014, 10:01 PM   #3
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Presumably there's plumbing that leads into the front pump pit? As in, the drain tile system around the outside of the foundation. Could be that the line leading to the front pit has gotten clogged. If the systems are connected then that water is backing up over to the other pit.

I'd think having someone come out and run a video camera down the lines to that pit would be a good idea.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:40 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Msradell View Post
All of the things you suggested could be the cause of the problem, it's extremely difficult to tell. Does the sump pump that is working have to run very often or just occasionally? If it's just occasionally and it's keeping up without any issues I really wouldn't worry about it.
I guess it depends on what the definition of a lot is. Of course it runs during any rain, and then even during a few dry days in a row, it'll kick on every once in a while. Maybe once a day, or every other day. I'd have to really pay attention and note each time I hear it.

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Originally Posted by wkearney99 View Post
Presumably there's plumbing that leads into the front pump pit? As in, the drain tile system around the outside of the foundation. Could be that the line leading to the front pit has gotten clogged. If the systems are connected then that water is backing up over to the other pit.

I'd think having someone come out and run a video camera down the lines to that pit would be a good idea.
That's a good point. I wonder if they are in fact connected. Is that common?
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Old 06-12-2014, 11:00 AM   #5
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That's a good point. I wonder if they are in fact connected. Is that common?
It's often done that way for new construction. Or at least it's supposed to be that way in a lot of areas. What actually gets done, well, that's another matter.

But when you said it used to run a lot and now sees hardly any water, that made me think the water is still there, it's just not getting to that pit. The fact your other one is running, possibly more than before, reinforces my suspicions. I could be wrong, of course, and there's some other issues involved. But were it might house I'd give serious thought to paying someone to scope those lines. Sure, the news might mean spending money, but better to catch this NOW rather than as a result of water damage later.
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Old 06-12-2014, 11:34 AM   #6
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has there been any development around you? sometimes home construction, or under underground construction (roads, utilities, etc.) can affect the flow of ground water
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Old 06-12-2014, 11:43 AM   #7
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Yup, have a sewer cleaner come out and they will auger the pipes to see if any tree roots or maybe the pipe broke or just clogged. Chances are it's clogged for some reason. Be glad you have the second one because if you didn't, the water would probably start coming up through the concrete floor. When our sump pump failed, once the pipe around the house was filled up, the cracks in the concrete floor started to wick up water within about an hour. It was amazing how fast it happened.
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Old 06-13-2014, 08:38 AM   #8
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May be the job was done right, by luck if necessary. That many pump was installed for the worst day, but now that 5 houses are pumping together, pumping is at over capacity.
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Old 06-14-2014, 03:46 AM   #9
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none of us know but we can toss out suggestions think i'd have a plumber run a camera 1st,,, ixnay on the auger IF the piping's ads hdpe corrugated - it'll just rip it up

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