Sump Pump Maintenance Tips to Prevent Water Damage

Experiencing flooding in your basement or water damage is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. To avoid these situations there are certain preventive measures that you can take to ensure your home and your family are safe. You can keep an eye on cracks or disruptions in the foundation, seal your windows efficiently, or install well covers on your windows. If all these precautions fail, it is important that your sump pump is in good condition and working correctly.  

A sump pump is a device placed in your basement that helps prevent ground water or rainwater from entering your basement. It takes the water from under or around your home, drains it into what is called the sump pump pit, and is pumped away from the home and it’s foundation. Sump pumps typically have a lifespan of five to seven years depending on how often it is used and how well it is taken care of. The sump pump is a crucial tool that helps prevent water damage in your home. This means it needs regular maintenance and care to keep it functioning properly. Here are a few sump pump maintenance tips to prevent water damage to your home and keep your basement from flooding.

Sump Pump Maintenance to Prevent Water Damage and Basement Flooding

Get to Know Your Sump Pump

If you moved into a home that already had an existing sump pump, you may not know much about it. In order to care for your pump properly, it’s important to learn approximately how old the pump is and if it has had any issues in the past. You can ask the previous homeowners, look up your model online, read the owner’s manual, and research where to get replacement parts in case something malfunctions. 

Recommended Maintenance Schedule

Having a sump pump requires occasional maintenance to keep it operating efficiently. At the very minimum, it is recommended that you examine your pump annually. This can be done by you if you feel well trained. If not, you can hire a professional to service your pump. While you should definitely be cleaning and servicing your pump annually, most homeowners like to perform maintenance quarterly to extend the life of their sump pumps and prevent any issues. Here are some annual and quarterly maintenance tasks you should perform or have a professional check on your sump pump. 


  • Unplug your pump and empty any free-standing water. 
  • Remove any debris and make sure the pump screen is clear. 
  • Plug the pump back in and run 5 gallons of water through it to make sure it is operating properly. 


  • Examine your pump for any broken pieces, noticeable issues, rust, or corrosion. 
  • Check your owner’s manual for lubrication requirements and follow accordingly. 
  • Remove sump pump and clean both pump and pit thoroughly. 
  • Check the condition of the discharge pipe outside. It should not be covered by surrounding dirt or plants. The pipe should drain fully and not hold any residual water. If it does, the water could freeze and obstruct the pipe.  

Signs of a Problem with Your Sump Pump

These are a few of the signs you may experience if you have a problem with your sump pump. Make sure to keep an eye out for any of these issues and to address them immediately to make sure your pump is working efficiently. 

  • Strange noises can indicate that your pump has a broken or worn-out piece. 
  • Rattling or grinding noises can indicate that you have a jam between pieces in your pump. 
  • If your pump is turning on and off, or having trouble turning on, it may be due to internal wiring errors. 
  • If your pump has an oil leak, it could mean that there is a severe problem or that your pump could fail. In this case, you might want to consult a professional. 

Other Sump Pump Maintenance Tips

Here are a few other sump pump maintenance tips to consider to keep your basement free of flooding and your house free from water damage.  

  • Consider purchasing a backup sump pump in case yours fails. 
  • Know who to call for pump maintenance. 
  • Invest in a smart sump pump. They can be controlled from your phone and will alert you if there is a problem with its operation.  
  • Know who to call in case of a flooding or water damage emergency. 

Finding Water Damage Restoration Professionals in Albany, NY

Hiring water damage restoration professionals is the key to addressing water damage and getting your home put back together quickly and efficiently. The team assesses the water damage and creates a restoration plan that covers you and your home from point A to point Z.  

Professional Fire Restoration should be the first call you make after experiencing any kind of water damage in your home. We have over 35+ years of experience of turning crisis into calm. We’re here to help you along your path to starting new. Contact us today so we can help clean the water damage in your home and repair it to what it was or make it even better.