Category Archives: Basement Care

  • 0
Macerator

Macerator Toilet Problems

Category : Basement Care

Macerator toilets are commonly used in homes across the UK and remove waste when it is flushed from below the drainage line.

Macerator systems are quiet and powerful but there can sometimes be problems. Macerator toilet pumps can fail, block or even break.

We have provided a list below of the potential problems related to macerators and how these can best be dealt with.

Some of these tasks can be carried out by yourself however, for peace of mind we would always recommend a trained specialist carries out the solutions to your macerator problems.

Macerator Is Still Running And Will Not Turn Off

One common problem that our customers have is that their macerator toilet keeps running even when turned off. This problem is caused when the pump has already flushed and continues to do so even though the macerator is clear. There are a number of reasons why this might occur:

  • Blocked macerator or pump
  • The rubber membrane has become damaged
  • Blockage in waste outside of the outline pipe
  • The microswitch is misfiring

Blocked macerator or pump

To unblock the macerator, a technician will first turn off the power supply. They will then remove the lid of the macerator. The blockage will most likely be toilet paper or other waste that has become stuck in the blade.

To remove this waste the technician will then use pliers and then turn the blade counterclockwise and carefully remove the waste accordingly.

Macerator Toilet that needs cleaning

Macerator Toilet that needs cleaning

If the macerator pump is blocked then the motor will need to be removed from the toilet. It will then need to be turned upside down so the pump impellers are visible.

Just like with the macerator, pliers will be used, and the engineer will clear the waste. The motor will then be put back into the macerator toilet.

Misfiring microswitch

This is a common problem that occurs in macerator toilets and this occurs when the waste is stuck between the switch and tank floor, which tricks the switch to thinking that the tank is full. The engineer will clear all the waste by hand and restart the pump.

The Rubber membrane is damaged

The rubber membrane will become damaged over time due to the water applying pressure on the seal. This will mean that potentially waste can get into the switch. The only real fix is that you will need a new replacement system that can be fitted by a specialist engineer.

Macerator Toilet Is Vibrating and Making A Loud Noise

If the macerator toilet is vibrating and making a loud noise, then it is more than likely that something has got stuck in the blade mechanism of the macerator.

A service engineer can fix this for you by removing the foreign object from the blade manually removing the object and by turning the pliers counterclockwise.

Macerator Pump is Starting on Its Own

If the macerator pump keeps starting by itself, then it is potentially a problem with the microswitch. For problems to occur with the microswitch it has to have either a fault with a misfiring microswitch or the rubber membrane may have become damaged.

If the microswitch is misfiring it leads the macerator into thinking that the tank is full when it is in fact empty. This will need to be replaced and then the pump can reset.

If there is damage to the rubber membrane, then waste will be able to get into the switch and cause problems to the system. A service technician will need to fit a new switch and rubber membrane.

Macerator Toilet Is Continually Tripping the Electrics

Macerator toilet pumps that continually trip the electrics is something that will need to be handled with care. This usually means that the water is getting into it which means the circuit will cut off so it will not lead to further damages. With the obvious dangers of water and electric it is recommended that only a trained technician is given the job of repairing the macerator.

If the motor has become damaged or is faulty then a specialist engineer will need to install a new macerator as the motor will be unrepairable.

The Macerator Does Not Smell Nice

If you have had a macerator operating for a long period of time, then it is more than likely it will need a deep clean. The macerator should ordinarily have instructions on how to clean it.

Macerator Toilet Pump is Foaming From The Vent

If your macerator is foaming out of the air vent then it is due to the over use of toilet cleaner or bleach being used. If this continues for a long period of time, then the motor will stop working because it is overheated this is because the toilet pump cannot pump water out correctly.

The solution would be to replace the microswitch to ensure the toilet pump system works correctly.

Macerator Is Running But It Is Not Pumping Water Out

If the macerator is running but is not pumping the waste away, then it is possible that the waste pipes are frozen. In just the same way that central heating systems pipes can become frozen so can those of the macerator.

The service engineer will first turn off the macerator and if the waste has overflowed then they will remove it. Hot towels will be used to heat up the pipes and loosen up the frozen blockage allowing the macerator to pump out the waste.

Need A Macerator Service?

We hope this article has provided you some useful advice about how a specialist technician will tackle different macerator toilet problems. We have a number of technicians placed across the UK able to help with any of your macerator issues. You can get in touch by calling 0800 019 9949 or by clicking the link down below.


  • 0

I have a waterproofing system but my basement floods every time it rains

As we start to see the back of Storm Dennis, this doesn’t mean we are in the clear. The Met Office has forecasted further heavy showers in the next few days and with this comes the increased risk of flooding, does your basement flood every time it rains?

How Should My Waterproofing System Protect My Basement From Flooding?

Your system was built with flooding in mind, if you have a dual pump system, this reduces the risk of flooding by significantly more than a normal pump system, because the secondary pump is in place, continuing to pump even if the first pump fails to operate.

It is important that the system can still work even during a power cut (these can be common during severe weather and alongside heavy rainfall) this then ensures the sump pumps are supplied with power, allowing them to operate for a period of time during a power cut. As a further precaution, most pump systems come with an alarm as standard, failing to keep up with your service plan could result in the alarm failing and not detecting high levels of water.

What Should I do If My Basement Floods?

Firsts things first, it’s important to sanitise all areas in the property that are affected and strip out all damaged timber from the property. With the potential health hazards, floodwater can bring, it’s important to cover exposed areas of skin and keep children and pets clear from flooded areas.

By removing any flood-damaged timber this then reduces the potential risk of a fungal decay outbreak, if you’re unsure on how to carry out flood remediation it’s always vital to speak to specialist property care specialists, such as nationwide company Timberwise.

Did you know?

During a flood, water levels and the rate at which the water is flowing can quickly change. It only takes 6 inches of floodwater to knock you off your feet.

How Do I Prevent My Basement From Flooding Again?

If you have spent the time, money and effort in transforming your basement into further living space or valuable storage space for your treasured belongings it’s important to ensure the continued maintenance of your installed waterproofing system to keep the basement dry. Although your system may require a little extra maintenance occasionally, the benefits last long term.

Why It’s Important To Maintain Your Pump?

It’s important to regularly carry out maintenance of the sump pump as failure to do so can result in not only the pump but the whole system failing. The consequences of failure are often major upheaval as it can lead to your basement flooding, personal belongings completely ruined and leaving your basement guarantee null and void.

Is Your Basement Ready To Handle The Heavy Rain?

You can trust our basement pump experts to provide you with the best basement sump pump service to solve your damp basement problem. Don’t worry, by completing the form, you’re not committing to a service. We will simply be in touch to discuss your options and answer questions you may have.

You can get in touch with our team by calling 0800 019 9949 or filling in our contact us form.


  • 0

Why is My Sump Pump Not Working?

Category : Basement Care , News

Sump Pump Power Outage
Sump Pump System is Frozen or Clogged
Lack of Maintenance
Float Switch is Not Working
Corrosion of the Sump Pump
Blocked Impeller
The Valve Has Stopped Working

A common question that is often asked by our customers is “Why is my sump pump not working?” The sump pump unit is perhaps the most important part of the basement waterproofing system.

The sump pump ensures that water is pumped away from the sump to an area away from the property where the water can then be drained away from the foundation.

If the basement sump and pump stops working then this can be a real problem. There are several reasons why the waterproofing system may have stopped working.

Sump Pump Power Outage

One of the reasons why the basement sump pump may not be working is that there could be an issue with power reaching the sump pump. The sump pump can lose power as a result of:

  • Extreme bad storm weather
  • A fuse can be blown in the circuit for where the sump pump has been plugged in
  • If you are using a low energy battery back up this can lose power
  • The plug socket was used for something else and the sump pump was not plugged back in.

One simple solution to this is contacting our team at the Basement Sump and Pump Company for a long-lasting battery backup sump pump system.

Sump Pump System is Frozen or Clogged

The perimeter drainage channel is a key part of the waterproofing system and when it is functioning correctly it will take the water from the perimeter of the basement and channel it to the sump and pump for safe removal from the basement. If the pipe on the sump pump unit has become blocked for whatever reason, the unit cannot pump any water from your property which could potentially lead to flooding.

Dirty

Sump pumps can also stop working if the pipe becomes frozen. Also, if any debris in the pipework is too much for the sump pump system to handle, then this could potentially be another reason why it will not work properly.

Lack of Routine Maintenance

Like most things, it can be subject to wear and tear through constant use and could become defective over a long period of time if not maintained. The best solution to this is to have an annual sump pump service, this will make sure that everything is working properly with your waterproofing system and ensures optimum performance.

Dirty

Our technicians are highly skilled pump engineers, and we can install and provide maintenance for different types of sump pump systems. The manufacturers we are currently working with are Zoeller Pumps, Delta Membranes and John Newtons.

Float Switch Not Working

The float switch functions based on the level of the water that is in the sump pump pit. When the water rises to a certain level then the sump pump will automatically switch on and start the process of pumping the water out of the basement.

Dirty

When the water level in the sump pump pit drops to a certain level the float switch will turn off. If the water in the pit is full of debris such as paper, wet wipes and hair then the water may struggle to move freely and the float switch may not operate as it should.

Corrosion of the Sump Pump Unit

Even the most corrosion resistant sump pump unit will start to rust at some point in its lifetime and if this happens the float switch may once again struggle to function properly.

The best course of action is to contact a specialist who can either clean the sump pump or install replacement parts as necessary.

Blocked Impeller

The impeller is one of the main functions for the sump pump system to work properly and this can malfunction for several reasons. One main sign that there is an issue with the impeller will be strange noises coming from the sump pump.

The impeller can become clogged due to the build up of dirt or debris. This can be sorted by having the impeller cleaned or in severe cases even replaced.

The Valve Has Stopped Working

The valve stops the water that is pumped from flowing back into the sump pump pit. Clogging is the main issue for why the valve will have stopped working. Debris, tiny stones or mud can start to build if not regularly maintained.

Dirty

The valve can also wear out after a long period of time so if this happens then this will need to be replaced to ensure that the sump pump system is working in order again.

What Do I Need To Do To Fix My Sump Pump System?

We have now outlined the reasons why the sump pump system may stop working, so what can you do? The main fix to sorting out the issue is to have regular maintenance of the sump pump system.

In a majority of cases, this means having an annual service of the sump pump. All issues discussed for the sump pump to stop working can be sorted by contacting our team at the Basement Sump and Pump Company.

Having regular maintenance carried out at your property is a small price to pay to know that your basement waterproofing system will be running smoothly during times of heavy periods of rainfall.

You can get in touch with us by clicking the link button below:

Contact Our Team


  • 2
Technician installing sump pump

How Do Sump Pumps Work?

Category : Basement Care , News

You’ve probably heard of sump pumps before. They are often mentioned by people after severe flooding or heavy storms. It’s unusual that you will hear people moaning about them, instead you will hear people talking about how the sump pump has saved their home, ensuring that they aren’t knee deep in water and their home is flood free.

What Is A Sump Pump?

A sump pump is a pump that is used to remove water that accumulates in a water-collecting sump basin and is commonly found in the basement of homes.

Water entering a home, due to heavy rain or high water table levels, is collected through the perimeter drains of a basement waterproofing system. The drains will funnel the water into the sump basin and the pump will then remove the collected water to the nearest drainage point.

The job of a sump pump is to direct water away from the house, to a place where it is no longer problematic, because of this, the pump will often be used in the basement of homes or areas where the water table is above the foundation level.

Basement sump pump

It is very easy for groundwater to collect in basements and crawl spaces. It will rise through cracks in your foundations and penetrate through your walls, often during long periods of rain or heavy storms.

If there is a possibility of flooding in your home, it is recommended that you have a sump pump installed as this will collect the water and redirect it away from your home, protecting your home from flooding and any waterproofing system from damage.

How Much Does It Cost For A Sump Pump To Be Installed?

It can cost up to £600 plus VAT for a sump pump to be installed in an average domestic property. However, this is dependent on whether any additional pipework is required. If larger pumps or foul pumps are required, then the cost can be higher.

Here at Basement Sump and Pump, as a trusted sump pump installation company, we install numerous sump pumps every year. Around 80% of the installations we complete will cost between £400 and £500 plus VAT. However, if a replacement sump is required it will be double this cost.

We would be happy to arrange for one of our sump pump specialists to visit your home and give you a free, no obligation quote for a sump pump to be installed in your property.

Contact Our Team

How Does A Sump Pump Work?

A sump pump will be installed in the lowest part of your basement where a hole around 2 feet deep and 18 inches across is cut into your concrete floor and the pump is placed in the sump pit, also known as a sump basin. The water will flow into the sump pit where it will be collected until the pump is activated.

A sump pump is activated by a float, similar to the one in your toilet tank, when the float rises to a set level the pump will start and the water will be pumped out of the sump basin. The water is then taken by the pipes out of the home via a drainage point and safely discarded several feet away from the foundation of the property.

cleaned-sump-unit

Sump pumps work really well when there is heavy rainfall, strong storms or rapidly melting snow. Instead of these weather elements flooding your home, they will be collected in the sump pit and pumped to a safe drainage area.

The Types of Sump Pumps

There are two types of sump pumps; a pedestal sump pump and a submersible sump pump.

The pedestal sump pump is often the more economical sump pump option. As it is mounted above the sump with an exposed motor it makes it easier for repairs to take place if needed. The pedestal sump pump is the more visible pump, but often won’t last as long as the submersible sump pumps.

The submersible sump pump is completely mounted inside the sump and sealed. This makes it the more visually appealing sump pump, but it does mean it is tricky to complete repairs if needed. The submersible sump pump will tend to cost more than the pedestal sump pump, but it will last longer, be less obtrusive and quieter too.

Why Do You Need A Sump Pump?

If you have a beautifully finished basement that is nicely converted into the perfect space to relax and unwind with gorgeous carpets, latest electronics and more, then you definitely need a sump pump installed. It will help avoid the risk of bad weather, or a change in water table levels, destroying your dream basement space.

You should also be considering a sump pump repair if your basement has flooded before. If you live in a flat or low lying area with soil that readily and easily traps water, if you live somewhere that has lots of extreme weather such as frequent heavy rain or snow or if your existing pump is 6 years old or more as they will usually last up to 10 years.

In order to get the most out of your pump, it is vitally important that they receive a regular service to keep them working efficiently and prevent any unwanted build up.

If you would like a basement sump and pump service then get in touch with us by calling 0800 019 9949 or contact us online.

Contact Our Team


  • 0

Basement Sump & Pump Co launch Christmas competition

Category : Basement Care

We’ve got Christmas covered with 7 layers of beautiful green and gold gift boxes – each one packed is packed with sweet delicious treats, including Lemon Butter Cookies, Chocolate Coated Almonds, Crumbly Fudge Cubes, award-winning Strawberry Jam, Caramels, Marzipans, a lovely Brandy Christmas Pudding and of course Chocolates!

Whether you’ve been naughty or nice, all you need to enter is…

Facebook – LIKE our Facebook page, SHARE our post

After sump pump clean

  • To qualify for the draw, you must  Facebook – LIKE our Facebook page
  • Timberwise staff are not eligible to win but are still encouraged to join in.
  • Each person is only entitled to one entry.
  • Entries must be submitted between Friday 30th November – 14th December 2018
  • The winner will be the entrant drawn at random from the entrants on Facebook
  • The winner will be announced on the Timberwise Facebook page and Twitter feed.
  • The winning prize is not refundable, non-exchangeable and non-transferable.
  • The winner must claim the prize within 24 hours of the draw finishing and reply to Timberwise with their address failing which the prize will be forfeited.
  • Timberwise reserves the right to use the name and images of the winner in all publicity materials.
  • The judges’ decisions are final and no correspondence will be entered into.

 


  • 0

Everything You Need To Know About Macerators & Sewage Pumps

Category : Basement Care , News

A macerator pump is a fast-moving rotating blade that breaks up toilet waste through piping and into a sewer or septic tank. They’re compact units usually found in bathrooms at the back of your toilet. If you need your macerator serviced please get in touch and we can provide you with more information on 0800 019 9949.

Sewage pumps are wastewater pumps that move sewage from your property to an outlet channel. They’re always found at the lowest point of your basement and are generally submerged most of the time. Discharge water from toilets, showers and washing machines will all be removed from your property via a sewage pump.

Before sump pump clean

 Before Service

Most sewage pumps at automatic, and in case of power failure, it’s recommended they’re fitted with a battery back-up system. The last thing you want in your basement is your sewage pump failing! We recommend having your sewage pump serviced at least once a year and your sewage chamber cleaned at least every 18 months.

To help you keep your sewage pump / macerator working in tip top condition we have compiled our list of the top items that you should not flush your toilet or sink:

Disposable baby wipes – even products described as ‘biodegradable’.
Paper towels – these items do not break down easily unlike normal toilet paper.
Sanitary towels and tampons
Dental floss – can become tangled in the grinder mechanism.
Plastic bags – incredibly people do flush plastic bags down lavatories!
Cotton wool buds – although small, these have been known to clog impellers.
Latex condoms / gloves – these are not biodegradable and can clog impellers.

After sump pump clean

After Service

At The Basement Sump & Pump Co. we are experts in servicing and maintaining sewage pumps. If you have any questions about your pump or need to book in a service, please give us a call on 0800 019 9949 or fill out our online form to request a service we’re here to help!


  • 0

Top 5 Questions about Sump Pumps

Category : Basement Care , News

Here at the Basement Sump & Pump Company we get lots of customers asking us for advice about their sump pump. Many of our customers have never even heard of a sump pump before! But don’t worry; we are here to help ensure your sump pump runs as smooth as possible and provide you with all the information you need to keep your basement warm and dry.

What is a sump pump?

A sump pump is a pump used to remove excess water from a chamber, which also known as a sump. Water may collect in the chamber from excess groundwater, channelled from a perimeter drainage system, or from rainwater. They’re commonly found in basements which are below the water table.

Sump pumps are usually made of metal or plastic and are commonly submersed inside the chamber. When the water level inside the chamber reaches a certain level, the pump will turn on automatically and drain the water away to a convenient drain off point.

Some pumps also have an alarm to let you know when the water level is too high. Other pumps come with a battery back-up system so they can work in the event of power failure.

Sump pump

Why do I need my sump pump serviced?

Once your sump pump is installed, it’s easy to forget it is even there. Many people only become aware that they have a sump pump fitted if suddenly their basement starts to flood. Flooding can occur if your pump has broken, if the pump isn’t powerful enough or if there is a blockage in your perimeter channel.

An annual service may be required to validate any insurance or guarantee on your basement in the event of a flood and to avoid any loss of personal property that may be housed near your pump. Regular maintenance is recommended to ensure your pump is functioning properly.

How often should I get my sump pump serviced?

To keep your sump pump in good working condition, we recommend having a service every 12 months. However, some pumps are used more frequently than others. For example: We attend many pumps in London that are heavily used due to a build-up of silt in their basement drainage channels, so in such instances, we would recommend a service every 6 months to ensure the pump is working as it should. The Basement Sump Pump Company can offer competitive discounts to customers who require a service every 6 months.

Your pump will also be heavily used if it disposes of water from a washing machine or dishwasher. We also service sewage pumps, which may require a deep clean every other year. This can be assessed at the time of your pump service.

What do I do if my sump pump alarm goes off?

In the event of your alarm sounding, don’t panic! Sometimes condensation will make contact with the sensor inside the chamber and set off your alarm. To find out if the water level inside you pump is too high, then listen to see if your pump is running constantly. It will sound similar to a dishwasher. The pump may be continuously running for various reasons, most of which can be easily fixed.

If you require an engineer to provide your sump pump repair, give us a call on 0800 019 9949 and we will endeavour to get someone out to help you as soon as possible.

How long will my sump pump last?

Submersible sump pumps generally last up to 10 years if not longer. Regular service will ensure your pump lasts as long as possible. As submersible pumps can be expensive to replace, it will be cheaper for you in the long run to prolong the life of your sump pump. However, it is always worthwhile checking with the manufacturer of your pump to find out how long they advise the manufacturers warranty is valid for.


  • 0

Annual checks at the ready for summer!

As the UK has had its fair share of wet weather already this year, we should start preparing  for yet another typical British summer. Don’t be fooled by a short spell of sunshine, enquires have already been “flowing” in for sump and pump checks.

Most home owners miss their annual checks or forget to arrange one with the busy summer holidays coming up however with the potential for bursts of rain coming in thick and fast, this may cause an issue for your sump and pump. An annual clean and check can help maintain your sump and pump and keep it ticking along, saving you time, money as well as making for a stress free summer!

An unchecked Sump and Pump

To prevent this happening your sump and pump…

Don’t forget an annual basement pump servicing, in a majority of cases, this is required as part of the conditions of your guarantee. To arrange a ‘Clean and Check’ pump service from ourselves simply call 0800 019 9949 or complete our on-line ‘Clean and Check’ request form


  • 0

Going on holiday? Don’t forget your Sump Pump!

Its that time of year again. The rarest of rare events has happened (a few weeks of good weather!)  but many peoples thoughts are turning to that all important break away, jumping on a plane and heading off abroad. Before you pack your bags though spare a quick thought for your hard working friend in the basement.

The summer period is without doubt the best time of year to give your basement sump and pump unit a thorough service before the cold and damp season ahead. Right now your basement sump and pump may not be working flat out but you know as soon as the ‘rainy season’ starts he’ll be there for you, keeping your basement dry.

Right now, we have extended our £150 offer for pump servicing so keeping your basement dry need not cost the earth.  Why not give us a call on 0800 019 9949 to arrange to have your sump pump serviced and give you that peace of mind that your faithful friend is in tip top condition for the seasons ahead.


  • 0

Guess What’s hiding underneath all the lime scale?

An ode to a ‘Clean and Check’

Two sad pumps sitting in their sump, both neglected and unloved, I’m not surprised they had the hump!

Then along come Rod armed with his ‘Clean and Check kit, he’d soon make sure that both were fighting fit!

As the first pump was lifted you could hear a sound of glee, and the second pump said “Hey, don’t forget me!”

The engineer worked hard removing all the dirt, the grime and filth was everywhere, some even on his shirt!

Valves and batteries  replaced  they both looked good as new, a classic case of a ‘Clean and Check’ that was definitely long overdue!

Back to the sump they went placed with care by our expert, ready to drain any water away to stop a flood alert!

Request a clean and checkOn a more serious note! Should you have a basement sump and pump system installed don’t forget to have it serviced. An annual basement pump servicing  in a majority of cases is required as part of the conditions of your guarantee. To arrange a ‘Clean and Check’ pump service from ourselves simply call 0800 019 9949 or complete our on-line ‘Clean and Check’ request form


Bradley Brown
Bradley Brown
17:43 09 Apr 20
lewis barwick
lewis barwick
19:07 06 Jul 18
I called up for a service which was promptly booked in. Mark was friendly and knowledgeable. I will definitely be... having you back next year. Many thanks, Lewis.read more
alan holmes
alan holmes
09:59 28 Jun 18
Mark arrived early, protected floor surfaces and carried out the service with good knowledge of the site from doing the... initial installation and previous service visitsread more
See All Reviews