How To Install A Sump Pump Drain System- A Comprehensive Guide

Back when I was learning the ropes of sump pump installation, I didn’t set the time aside to know more about the drain system. Luckily, the built-in drain system of my old home didn’t need any further modification. However, once I got to a new place, I had to get back in the grin to know all there is about the sump pump drain system.

Now, if you know the basics of sump pump installation, the process won’t seem complicated to you. Still, as these are advanced procedures best suited for seasoned hands, I would suggest you read through them carefully to get a complete understanding.

I understand- the temptation to skim through is immense. Well, if you feel confident enough to cramp all the information, be my guest. If you want to be on the safe side, take some time out, and instead of just reading the lines, try to understand and visualize the procedure. Let’s begin!

How To Install A Sump Pump Drain System

Installation Method

Locate a firm base

  • Generally, it would help if you placed a sump pump at the lowest region of your basement. Note that the equipment must at least be 10 inches away from any wall or pillar; it must be closer to the GFCI outlet. (Although this step is also the first thing you would do when installing a sump pump, you should still know this for setting up a drain system as well because the pump and drain system have to work together).
  • Ensure that the exterior discharge pipe is long enough to drain water away from the basement.

Get that jackhammer started!

  • After locating the exact location, it’s time to place the pump. Use a jackhammer and cut the perimeter, about 10-15 inches away from any wall.
  • Next, use a liner to verify how much soil you have dugout. When the edge of the liner lies parallel with the surface of the basement floor, you can finally stop digging.
  • It is the pit where you must place the drain tiles; to direct water to the sump pump.

Pour gravel into the pit.

  • Use coarse gravel to fill in. You must do so by ensuring about four inches thick floor.
  • Use a wooden float to even out the gravel. This step will ensure that the foundation structure is about 1 inch above the concrete’s initial base and, most significantly, one inch above the foundation footing.
  • It also guides the water to seep out between the footing and wall by maintaining a one-inch-wide path.

Secure the area

  • Lastly, you must ensure that everything is secure and tightly bound. Ensure that the fresh cement is balanced firmly across the original basement’s rough surfaces. A cement and water mixture can achieve it.
  • Now, even out all the uneven linings with a trowel.

Let the area dry for at least two to four days, and now, you can install the sump pump.

Complete the discharge line

  • Fasten to the check valve’s exposed end a small piece of PVC pipe, then adhere a 45- or 90-degree PVC elbow to the short tube to guide the drainpipe to the basement foundation wall.
  • Next, attach additional pipe length preceded by an extra 45- to 90-degree elbow to the wall.
  • Furthermore, mount the pipe just above the base wall from the elbow to the rim joist; to provide lateral support.
  • To navigate the drain pipe into the wall, drill a hole via the rim joist and the external siding by using a saw. With a 90-degree elbow and a similar long horizontal pipe flowing into the rim joist gap, proceed the piping.
  • It would be best if you channeled the pipe back down to the floor until it reaches out and to a suitable drainage point such that the water can drain away from the building.
  • Finally, by using caulk, seal the area around the opening in the rim of the joist.

Check the drainage system:

  • One cause of failed drainage system is clogged pipes! To allow the water to drain appropriately, ensure that no debris clogs up the pipelines.
  • Before rinsing the debris out of the pit, make sure to disconnect the pump from the power source.

Choose wisely!

  • The sump pump: Many factors depend on the types of sump pump that you are going to use. Generally, sump pumps come with a weep hole, which is the hole via which the water drains away. However, if your sump pump lacks the weep hole, don’t worry! You can make the holes just by following a few guidelines.
  • The drainage pipes: When it comes to drainage pipes, invest in plastic ones! Plastic pipes work efficiently to drain water away; if securely properly.
  • The check valve: Investing in a float valve is an absolute necessity and lifesaver! Float valves ensure the efficient functioning of the sump pump. Although, you must maintain it regularly.

Final checks!

  • Place water in the pit of the sump pump; to check if the valve is working appropriately and that water ascends the pump. In the pipe, there should be no spillage.
  • Suppose there is no sight of leakage from the drain pipes, congratulations! You have successfully installed a sump pump drain system.

Ensure safety measures

  • Ensure you have proper gloves, ear protection, and safety goggles when handling objects like a jackhammer, cement, and other equipment.
  • Furthermore, make sure the power supply is turned off before starting the project.

How Can I Prevent Water from Entering the Basement?

If you are looking for ways to keep your basement dry, there are several ways you can stop the water from seeping into the basement.

  • Check for cracks in the drainage pipes; seal them.
  • Remove any unwanted plants from the area and further incorporate soil to raise the soil level away from the basement.
  • Invest in a gutter extension, and let it handle the drainage system! Although, you need to maintain it religiously.
  • Waterproof the area!

How Deep Should the Drainage Line Be?

It is appropriate to set up most sump pumps and drainage lines at about 3 feet deep. However, the precise level varies mostly on regional ground requirements and the quantity of flooding you intend to get. Bottomless pits will accumulate more water and require a very efficient pump to remove all the moisture.

How Long Does It Take to Install A Sump Pump Drain System?

Often, you can easily install the drainage system yourself. But if you have a complex foundation or are utterly new to plumbing, you may require a professional plumber. Depending on the type of drainage system and the complexity, it may take up to a week to install a sump pump drain system.

How Much Does It Cost to Install the Drainage System?

If you are taking the responsibility of installing the system, it may cost approximately as little as $100 to $500. You must make a budget of at least $1500 while doing the project yourself. This budget includes all the PVC pipes, safety materials, and the sump pump itself!

However, if you are skeptical about doing the project yourself and want a smooth and error-free installation, hire a professional plumber! With that, the cost also increases. It may cost as little as $750 to as high as $7500 approximately.

Of course, you also get a good quality drain system in your household with that cost.

Final Thoughts

With a proper drainage system comes a healthy basement. Investing in a sump pump drainage system is a smart move, especially if you live in low-lying areas. We hope you have gained some insights on how to install a sump pump drain system and can take care of it by yourself, thanks to our comprehensive guide.

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