3 Reasons Your Sump Pump Won't Stop Running (And What You Can Do About It)

If you live in a region that experiences a lot of rainfall accompanied by flooding, a sump pump is one of the most invaluable plumbing systems to install in your home. Usually installed in the basement, sump pumps are designed to pump water away from the foundation of your home, preventing flooding and its associated water damages. One problem you may experience with your sump pump is continuous running. Besides using up too much electricity, a sump pump that won't stop running will overheat and eventually break down, calling for repairs or replacement. Knowing the reasons your sump pump runs continuously will help you plan for the necessary repairs. Here are the top culprits for this sump pump problem.

The Discharge Lines Are Leaking

Sump pumps have discharge lines that direct the flooded water out of your house. Over time, your discharge lines can suffer from normal wear or tear, and this can result in leaks. If the leaks are considerably large, most of the water will drip back into your basement, resulting in a sump pump that doesn't shut off. Replacement is usually the ideal solution here since most of the discharge lines are made of PVC (plastic) piping material that can be challenging to repair.

 The Float Switch Is Jammed

The float switch is a fixture on the sump pump that moves upwards or downwards depending on the level of water in your basement. As water floods to a certain level, the float switch will move upwards and trigger another switch that turns the sump pump on. As the level of water reduces, it will lower the float switch, turning off the sump pump. A float switch that's jammed in the "on" position means your sump pump will continue running even when all the water has been pumped out.

In most cases, this is caused by a float switch that's stuck on a pipe or wire inside your sump pit. The float may also break while it's in the "on" position. In the latter case, you'll need to replace it. Otherwise, you can simply free it up if it's tangled to enable it to move freely with the level of water.

The Check Valve Is Faulty

Generally, discharge lines run straight upwards. Therefore, to ensure water doesn't flow back into your sump pit, the lines are usually fitted with a check valve that prevents the backflow of water. If the valve is damaged or clogged, water will flow back into the sump pit, and your sump pump won't stop running. Unless you're handy with sump pumps, call a plumber to determine the specific issue. The solution could be as simple as clearing the debris off the check valve.