crawl sump

Do you comment on crawl space sump, do you test it, what if there is water near the unit? (Most I have seen are sealed) Curious?

The State SOP in the Carolina’s requires us to inspect sump pumps. I try to operate the float switch, but I do not put my hands in water.

I say this at a minimum whenever I see one:

“The LOCATION(room-space/areas) could be subject to moisture intrusion, but is equipped with a float-activated sump pump. Common sense dictates that moisture should be handled before it even enters a residence, but some residences do have sump pumps.The sump pump should be periodically monitored to ensure proper operation.”

Same practice in Missouri.

If it is sealed, there’s nothing to do.

I have come across sump pumps in crawl spaces. Once it was installed in a 5 gallon bucket with 1/2" holes drilled in the bucket. The bucket was barried in the dirt floor. I of course called it out. My fear was that the bucket may float enough not to be effective.

My response
“Non-professional installation. I recommend repair.”

I would say its purpose isn’t sufficing & pretty easy to call for corrective action

Standing water and wet soil were observed in the crawl space. The exact entry point of the water could not be determined. Moisture can facilitate the growth of a variety of molds that can promote unhealthy conditions and excess humidity can cause decay to wood structures over time. Additionally, chronically moist conditions can cause foundation settlement or deterioration over time. Therefore, you should consult a grading and drainage contractor or a licensed general contractor with experience in crawl space drainage and moisture to determine the extent of the concerns and necessary repairs. Observation of the crawl space during a period of heavy and prolonged rain is also recommended.

George you have to comment on them.

Common defects I see no check valve, discharge too close to house, and improper basins.

If its not installed in a basin, the pump will fail prematurely, and you can undermine the foundation.

Some can’t be tested. Take a look at the plug. If its one plug plugged into another, remove the first plug, and plug in the other one. This way you’ll know if the pump works.

Thanks! I do comment on its presents and if the crawl is dry I assume it’s working but all of them I see are under water and I am not going to see if the grounding is working …:slight_smile:
This has been very helpful.
I went back to an inspection I did a couple months ago when the single lady called me after a huge rain Sunday and said the cable guy told her the crawl was full of water. I looked at my report and I did mention water by the crawl entrance hatch and suggested sealing the hatch and monitoring after the next rain (but the remainder of the crawl was dry) to insure water is not getting in anywhere else.
She was not calling me out just asking me for suggestions or guidance so I went out and sure enough the pump had failed and there was 6" of water in the crawl under the plastic (that was properly installed and sealed). I used my sniffer and it was hot but I was not going to stick my hand in the water of corse. Called a plumber friend of mine and he has already repaired it so all will be fine.
Guess lesson learned is that if the sump is not accessible to test I will always call out for monitoring and yearly check/maintenance.

Thanks Juan, I assume you are saying that by unplugging and plugging in the secondary plug it will run regardless of float position?

Yes. That’s what I always do just to see if it turns on. If it has a float, I just test it that way though.