Sump Pump discharge hose - Winterizing??


Old 08-13-02, 12:16 PM
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Exclamation Sump Pump discharge hose - Winterizing??


We have recently bought our first house, which has a sump pump. Neither my husband nor I are familiar with sump pumps and could use some pointers on general maintenance, especially winterizing. We actually had the pump looked at by our plumber and everything is working fine, so the main area of concern is in the discharge pipe and what to do with it this winter. We live in an area where -25 to -35 degrees Celsius is norm. Brrrrr

The pump is located in the basement at the back of the house. The discharge pipe runs the full length of the basement to the front of the house and out through the basement wall. Outside, we have 2" flexible hose that right now is lying across our walkway and onto our front lawn. For aesthetic and safety purposes, my husband and I have been thinking of burying the pipe under the walkway, possibly inside a larger cylinder and having it come out further down the lawn. What we didn't take into account, and what our neighbor pointed out yesterday, is these hoses sometimes freeze in the winter and can do so well back inside the house. As well, if the hose is buried it will take longer to thaw come spring. You then run into the problem of having the pump cut in with a frozen hose.

We were wondering, what basic winterizing we should do? What would be the ideal set-up to avoid having to trip over this hose every time we walk into the house? (We can't put it in any other direction.)

Would a larger diameter hose be better suited for the winter?

And if we do bury the hose are there any tips or tricks we should be aware of?

Could use some ideas!!
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Old 08-13-02, 07:23 PM
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Are you in the city or country?

Your sump pump is likely for emergency use in the event of a sewer back-up.
If that's the case you would want the hose as short as possible and self draining to prevent freeze-up.
It would also be usefull to not have a check valve on the pump so that the water would drain back to the sump to prevent freezing near the wall.
This likely may not work on your set-up, as the long discharge hose would refill the sump pit and cause the pump to short cycle.
Old 08-14-02, 05:12 AM
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We are in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, located in the Red River Valley. You may recall the flooding Manitoba, Minnesota, and North Dakota experienced in 1997.

The main purpose of the sump pump is for sewer backup, but another is to reduce the water pressure underneath the house. The area we're in has a high water table and many homes without sump pumps experience heaving.

There is a check valve on the pump but it is next to the actual pump, which is down in the well. The hose travels from the well straight up to the basement ceiling and then runs the length of the house. I think if I make sure the opening is lower than where the hose makes the 90-degree turn at the ceiling, I should be ok. That way the hose will drain. It is probably best if I keep the outside hose short as well. I'll just have to be careful of icy conditions near the walkway.

Thanks Greg!!

Old 08-14-02, 09:43 AM
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I know all too well of Winnipeg's problem.
I gave up a Saturday to sandbag during the flood.
We are now a 6 1/2 hr drive from WPG, having formerly lived a few houses from the Red.
If the pump is for emergency use then you still want it to be functional during the winter. You could still have the water run to a remote spot in the yard during the summer and then shorten the hose for freezing temps.
A problem though is the check valve on the pump. When the pump stops the water stops flowing in the discharge pipe and remains in the pipe untill the next pump cycle. This water will remain near the outside wall and will likely freeze. You should find a way to drain this hose.

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