How To Reset A Sump Pump

Your sump pump quit working? From time to time, every sump pump needs some resetting. Even the well-made pumps will need some maintenance every now and then.  If your sump pump runs but doesn't pump, or if it isn't running like it used when it was first installed, you might need to reset it.

The purpose of a sump pump is to pump out basement water to builds up into the drain or sewer. Just like all the other types of machinery on this planet, a sump pump might stop working. Fortunately, it's a quick fix and only takes about a few minutes to do so.

In this article, I'm going to show you how to reset a sump step by step. Dirt and debris are the primary cause of sump pump failure and will result in a sump pump not pumping water.

With that being said, let's go over the steps so that you can easily figure out the problem and learn what to do if the sump pump stops working.

How To Reset A Sump Pump

In the following section, I'll show you everything there is to know about resetting a sump pump.

Step 1 – Unplugging The Sump Pump

The first thing you need to do is disconnect the power. Unless you want a shocking experience, make sure to unplug all the power cables. For safety purposes, shut off the power at the breaker first and then proceed to disconnect the power cord.

Before you start, make sure there are no power cords attached to any of the power outlets. This also goes for any electrical gears inside your home. It's crucial that you take every precaution necessary when working with electrical components around water. The common problems that occur in a sump pump are electrical.  

Common Troubleshooting

Don't take out the sump pump just yet. If the model you have in your basement has a quick reset button, press it. There are some pump units that come with a quick reset button.

Most of the time, this will do the trick. What this button does is it allows you to cycle the motor and power without removing the sump pump out of the put. If you want a quick fix, this is a good option.

However, if the pump has mechanical problems, this won't work. If the quick reset button didn't fix your problem, you could proceed to the next step.

Step 2 – Taking The Pump Out

Lift the basin cover and pull out the sump pump from the basin. If you have any drainage pipes connected, disconnect them. Avoid bending or damaging the pipes, or else you will have to connect new pipes.

You already have enough work on your platter; you don't want to add any more. Now, when you pull out the pump, water will come out from it. Keep a tarp or old towel nearby and put the sump pump system on it. The pump will be dirty and damp. This is a good time to give the pump a thorough clean.

Step 3 – Cleaning The Sump Pump

First of all, you would want to check the exterior first. Make sure there is no rust. Also, check for potential spots that might cause a leak. It is a good idea to check for these problems first before the motor gets flooded again.

If all is good, start cleaning the bottom of the pit. Over time, grime and dirt build up inside the basin pit. You will even find dirt inside the sump pump. Keeping them clean will ensure longevity and also prevent future problems.

The most common reason for a sump pump failure is the small rocks and pebbles that get stuck inside the pump body. It's a common cause for stalled motors. If your sump pump runs but doesn't pump, there is a good chance the small rocks and pebbles are blocking or jamming the motor.

Step 4 – Checking The Drain Lines

Once you have cleaned the filter, motor, and basin pit, check the drain lines. The discharge pipe and drain line should be checked thoroughly before you reattach your sump pump. Make sure the pipe and lines are in good working order and free of clogs.

Every sump pump will make some sort of noise when running. If the drain pipes are clogged, it will make even more noise because the pump has to work harder. This will also increase the risk of smoking or a burnt-out pump. 

Step 5 – Putting Everything Back In Order

Once you have performed all the common troubleshooting steps, it's time to put everything back in its proper place. This is the final step in resetting your sump pump. Put back everything the way you found it.

Keep your installation guide or the owners-manual in your hand in the event that you forget which part goes where or things don't seem to fit. One of the most important steps for properly resetting a sump pump is to reconnect all the parts properly.

Make a wrong step somewhere along the process, and you will end up with a leak sump pump system.

Final Thoughts

Obviously, you would want to start by pressing the quick reset button. However, if you don't have a reset button or it doesn't fix the problem, just go through the steps I've shown you, and there is a good chance that you will successfully reset the sump pump.

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