Sump pump blowing circuit?


Old 03-31-07, 08:53 AM
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Sump pump blowing circuit?

Got up this morning to a blown circuit in the house. After much hunting, I discovered that the sump pump in the basement is on the same circuit that my office is on (it's directly under it). When I unplugged the sump, I could get the circuit back on, but the moment the pump is plugged in the circuit breaker blows immediately. I plug it into a different circuit with an extension, and it blows that one immediately.

This, of course, happened Saturday morning, not, say, Friday when I had the day off and it wouldn't be a problem. Oh, and it's been raining for days and I've got a few inches of space left in my sump. I've got a call into a plumber and will likely be going to buy the largest wet-dry vac I can find shortly, but are there any magical hints I need to know of here? I'm guessing my sump is shot and needs replacement, but could any kind of a jam or blockage cause this? Doubt it, but worth a shot.
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Old 03-31-07, 09:40 AM
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How fast is the breaker tripping? Is it INSTANT, or is it a few second pause? If the former, it's a short circuit- your pump is toast. If the latter, it could just be a locked rotor; see if you can clean the impeller. Is there any water sloshing around in the case? I've gone through 3 sump pumps in the course of my addition (pumping excavations dry)- none of mine shorted out though, just simple stopped working, but they did fill with water, which can cause any number of problems, including a short.

No need to call a plumber- $100 at the big box will buy you a new sump pump you can hook up yourself. (If you post the details over in the plumbing forums, they can walk you right through it!) Failing that, $60 will get you just the pump itself (w/no float), which you can attach to a garden hose and plug into any outlet in a punch- this will only take a few minutes and is far cheaper than a plumber.
Old 03-31-07, 10:04 AM
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The simplest thing to do to resolve this problem quickly is to go buy a new pump and install it. There are a number of possible causes for this problem, but a new pump is the most likely solution to all of them.

Were any of the breakers that were tripping either GFCI or AFCI (i.e., do they have a test button on them)?
Old 04-02-07, 07:33 PM
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this will only take a few minutes and is far cheaper than a plumber.

We made a few more friends here.

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