I recently put an addition on my house (finished a year ago). We built a full basement under the addition, and dug about 3' deeper than the existing basement. The foundation company laid 4" corrugated black pipe around the new foundation, terminating in a sump pit in the corner of the new basement closest to the old basement.
As a side note, the "old" and higher basement got seepage due to hydrostatic pressure during EVERY heavy rain - something the prior homeowner failed to mention. We installed interior drain tile (PVC this time) and a second sump pit - it has cured all of our problems in the upper part of the basement.
Now, on the lower basement, I'm not having problems per se, but I'm amazed at the amount of water that gets pumped out. Last night in Chicago, we had HEAVY rains - probably got 2" in an hour. My lower pump was cycling almost constantly, and when I went near the pit, it sounded like someone had a firehose emptying into it. After the rain subsided, the pump still cycle pretty frequently (I counted about every one to two minutes). This morning, with no rain, the firehose sound was obviously gone, but there was a slow, steady flow of water that I could hear running into the pit. And of course every so often the pump would cycle it out. Now, I have noticed in the past, that even when there is no rain for days, my pump will occaisionally pump water out of the pit, and I can sometime hear a very slight trickle of water into the pit, again even when it is dry outside.
Some other facts -
- Both of my pumps empty into the sewer - my suburb allows that (in fact they prefer it when your house is close to your neighbors, as mine is).
- Both pumps are Zoeller. My upper pump has a battery backup with an AGS battery installed by the company that did my interior drain tile. As of now, my lower basement does not have a battery back up, but I plan on installing one because even though the area is currently unfinished, I do not want water coming out of the pit.
My questions -
1) Should I be concerned about the speed and volume of water that was coming into my pit during last night's storm?
2) Should I be concerned that this morning there was still a steady flow of water into the pit?
3) Should I be concerned that even when it hasn't rained for days, my pump still cycles water out?
4) Should I just shut up and be happy that even during last night's storm, I didn't get a drop of water in the basement?
5) Where could the water be coming from that is being pumped out, even though there has been no rain for days?
6) When I do finish the lower basement, what do you recommend to lessen the noise that the pit makes as water trickles into it? My thought would be just to pack some insulation on top of the pit to deaden the sound.
7) Once I get a battery back-up for my lower pump, will the frequent cycling of my main pump reduce it's life - and am I at risk of that pump dying?
Thank you in advance for your help. I know this is a lot - I'm obviously clueless on this stuff - I just know I hate wet basements.
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