Should a Sump Pump Chamber Always Have Water in It?

sump pump chamber with overflowing water

November 23, 2021

If your house or office has a basement that is susceptible to flooding, then you should consider having a sump pump system installed within your basement. Having a sump pump within your basement is something that you may have not considered at all.

However, if your basement is vulnerable to water seeping its way through then having a sump pump system is the perfect solution to keep your basement dry.

A typical sump pump system comprises of a pit (basically a hole in the slab) which then houses the chamber with the pump or pumps. Water passes then from the pit into the chamber and is then safely pumped away.

This leads us to a commonly asked question by sump pump owners – “Should a sump pump chamber always have water in it?”

How Does Water Enter Into A Sump Pump Chamber?

To understand if water needs to be in a sump chamber, you first need to understand how water gets into the sump chamber. Water flows into the sump pump chamber via direct flow and also via seepage through the walls. It is most common that in the later months of the year that there is heavy rainfall so the sump chamber will potentially fill with a lot of water.

During the summer months, you would expect drier weather and as a result, the sump pump chamber will have considerably less water in it. If your sump pump chamber is full of water when there is dry weather, then it might be time to see if there is a fault with it.

Can the Sump Pump Chamber Be Dry?

The sump pump systems job is to collect water and then safely remove it from the property. If no water that is entered the building and collected within the chamber, and the pump has not been activated then it is more than likely that there are no leakage issues.

If your sump pump chamber is dry, then it doesn’t always necessarily mean that something is wrong, but, if it is constantly dry then maybe there is a problem. Fitting a sump pump doesn’t always fix your flooding problem though.

For example, if your neighbour has a leak coming from their gutters and seeping into the basement, installing a sump pump may not always be the best fix. Fixing the original problem, such as pipes and gutters, is sometimes the best solution for preventing water damage to the basement.

Why Does My Sump Pump Chamber Always Have Water in It?

Having a sump pump chamber that has water in it is quite normal. If there is too much water in the sump pump chamber, then there may be a potential problem, especially if the pump is not working to pump the water out. At the same time, if there is always water in the sump pump chamber and the pump is working then it means the system is working exactly as it should.

If your sump pump chamber is constantly overflowing, then this is a real cause for concern. This can be down to a number of factors:

If the discharge line has become blocked, then this will mean the pump will not be able to remove the water that was collected in sump pump chamber. You should make sure that the discharge lines are not blocked and, in cooler temperatures, melt any ice to allow the water to be pumped away from your basement.

If there is too much water in the sump chamber, then it might be worthwhile considering adding an extra pump to handle the volume of the water or even add another sump pump to another part of the basement.

If your sump pump system has any of the issues highlighted above, then your sump pump will need to be inspected by a qualified sump pump engineer.

Final Thoughts

We hope this article has given you an insight into what it means if your sump pump chamber is either dry or always has water in it. As we have explained, there are a number of scenarios that can determine if there should, or shouldn’t be water present in the sump chamber.

For example, if you live in an area where you tend to have frequent wet weather then you would expect the sump pump to be running on a more regular basis and have at least have some water present in the chamber at all times.

On the other hand, if dry weather is common in your area, then you would expect the sump pump to be running less often. If the sump pump is running frequently during dry periods of the year, then it is best to have it checked out by a qualified engineer to check that the system is working as it should.

At The Basement Sump and Pump Co, we have a number of engineers across England and Wales on hand to deal with all types of sump pump issues. To get in touch, please call us on 0800 019 9949 or contact us online for a quick call back.

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