Basement flooding is on the rise in Toronto. Every home is at risk of basement flooding, even if it has not happened before. Water in your basement is most likely to occur during a heavy rainfall, or when snow and ice is melting, but you can take steps to help reduce or prevent it from happening.
A sump pump is a small pump that is installed at the lowest part of your basement or crawlspace that prevents flooding.
The sump is the low space that collects liquids, while the sump pump detects water in the sump and moves it away from your home through a network of pipes that is dug into the floor of the basement.
Groundwater can easily rise through the cracks in your foundation during long periods of rain. If there is a possibility that flooding can occur in your basement or crawl space, a sump pump will collect all of this water and redirect it away from your home.
There are two types of primary sump pumps available: submersible and pedestal pumps. Submersible pumps have the motor placed underwater in your sump basin, while pedestal pumps are positioned with the pump motor out of the water, above your sump basin.
It is recommended that Toronto residents consider a submersible sump pump as they are the quietest, most powerful and effective sump pump. They also allow for an airtight lid that will stop debris from falling into the pit and prevent moisture and odorous air from being released into your home.
What to Look For
- Choose a sump pump made of cast-iron instead of plastic as the heat generated will cause the plastic to deteriorate over time. Make sure both the outer and middle housing is cast-iron as well.
- Consider a battery backup pump, in case of a power outage.
Things to Consider
- If your house is located in or near a flood zone, you should have a sump pump professionally installed and take other measures to prevent basement flooding.
- Regularly maintain your sump pump, as this will increase its lifespan and help it perform more efficiently.
- Submersible sump pumps are quieter and more effective, but the motor in a pedestal sump pump’s will last longer because it is not submerged. However, you cannot muffle the noise of the pedestal sump pump and it may get in the way of things in your basement.
- Apply to the City of Toronto’s Basement Flooding Protection Subsidy Program to offset some of the costs of installation.
$700 to $5,000, including installation.