07:17AM | 04/08/05
Member Since: 04/07/05
6 lifetime posts
I'm strongly considering having a battery backup sump pump installed. I currently have a main sump pump. I'd like to know how much approximately a plumber can charge me for installation and connections, if I buy the sump pump. I'd like to do this before I go on vacation next Saturday, so if anyone can answer, I would appreciate it.

Recently there was a power outage due to a storm, and I don't want to worry about having to take the water out myself as I had to do when the power was out. It was such a hassle, and worrisome as well. I'd hate to think that it could happen again, especially during my vacation, when no one will be at the house.

Thank you.


02:26PM | 04/08/05
Member Since: 04/01/05
47 lifetime posts
Prices for installation vary all over the country depending where you live. A Baltimore plumber charges on the average of $120.00 where some rural PA areas they are $35.00 per hour.

If you have city water, the best type of back up pump is a water powered pump. Never a battery to ever worry about and will pump for ever and long as you have a water source. If you live in an area that cold winter storms have knocked power out for days then a battery wouldn't last. Zoeller makes the best battery pump and you need to supply a 12V marine grade battery. Please don't purchase the home center junk. Water powered is the way to go. If you have well water, then a battery one is the only way.

You can contact me at [email protected] for information on a good water powered back up system. I could also fax you the scoop on it if you would like. I also can be reached at 410-760-2801 Mon-Fri

Kerry Bonham


04:24AM | 04/09/05
Member Since: 04/07/05
6 lifetime posts

Thanks for answering my question regarding prices for backup sump pump installation. I live in the town of Old Bridge, N.J. My house backs to woods where a small river runs through. Our house is positioned on higher ground, but I'm sure the water table is fairly high in our area. Our water is supplied by the city. I've lived here for only a year now - and a few weeks ago was the first time the power went out. There were very strong winds that day and a lot of rain (you probably heard about the flooding that went on in some areas of New Jersey on the news). Flooding wasn't really such a problem over in my area, thank God.

I work in Elizabeth, and had called a company from the phone book - they quoted me $750 by phone, even when I told them I had already bought the pump! I'm assuming this is a total rip off? If I call a company over here, and they say around the same amount, how can I haggle with them in terms of price? I usually use A. Bailey Plumbing, they do a good job, but they tend to charge quite a bit for the smallest things.

I was thinking of purchasing the Watchdog 1730 GPH battery operated backup pump. The battery is supposed to last for 7.5 hours continuously, or intermittently for days. I believe it costs around $229. What do you think about this pump?

You mentioned that a pump powered by water is best - could you tell me how that works? My current main pump isn't situated near any water lines - it situated in a corner ****hest away from the hot water heater/clothes washer/etc.. How would it get connected? Also, will our water bills go up if I were to install a water powered one?

If you could get back to me by email, I would appreciate it, as I can't check my fax till Monday.

Thanks again



07:49AM | 04/09/05
Member Since: 04/01/05
47 lifetime posts
With the water powered pump, you would have to get a cold water line to it. The water only runs when it calls for the pump to come on. Who cares how much water it uses at the time of need. It pays for itself if you have a finished basement.

Find a plumber that works by the hour and not on flat sheet pricing. They gave you a price for two installations including the back up pumps. The installation time needed to install a back up pump would be 1 hour including travel time. All materials to cut this pump in is included, so their are no extra materials to pay for. In New Jersey you should pay no more than 150.00.


08:53PM | 04/11/05
Member Since: 09/01/03
9 lifetime posts
Regardless of the pump you choose, have the plumber run a completely separate pipe to the outside. He may want to save you a few dollars or himself a few minutes by putting a "Y" in the existing outlet pipe and hooking them together. One house we bought had the sump plumbed that way. When the valve above the backup sump eventually failed, the primary pump would run almost continuously recirculating the water. Eventually the sump basin would fill to the point where the battery backup would kick in too, so we would have two pumps running. When the battery eventually wore down, the basement flooded.

Also, make sure that you can hear the alarm that the backup pump sounds when it runs. The cheap unit we had could barely be heard standing outside the sump closet door closed, and not at all from the 1st or 2nd floor. We never knew the backup pump was running.


01:54AM | 04/12/05
Member Since: 04/01/05
47 lifetime posts
That makes good sense and Zoellers installation manual shows both types of installations. What was explained I never heard of happening, however if the main discharge line would ever freeze up it would be good to have that second outlet of discharge. Good point taken.


07:19AM | 04/12/05
Member Since: 04/07/05
6 lifetime posts
Thank you to the both of you for your responses. You have both given me information to help me become better informed on this subject, which I really did not know much about since this is my first experience with a sump pump. I'm going to be looking into plumbers soon.

Thanks again.
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