Avoid a Frozen Sump Pump Discharge Line

Avoid a Frozen Sump Pump Discharge Line

A suspended sump pump discharge hose signals bad news for homeowners that have sump pumps installed in their cellar. If a sump pump hose freezes, the pump will work more difficult and will eventually fail because of overheating.

That means it won’t do its job of discharging water that accumulates around the foundation. Therefore, it’s important to help prevent sump pump lines from freezing to keep the basement safe from flooding. 

The objective of a sump pump, of course, is to expel any rainwater that seeps into your home. You may expect that water intrusion is not an issue in winter, but that is rarely the case. Instead of rain, you are coping with melted snow (even though we get our share of chilly storms, also).

Tips to Prevent a Sump Pump Discharge Line from Freezing

  • The sump pump discharge line should be either buried in the yard or extended out above-grade on a downward slope.
    1. When the pipe is buried, it should be buried at least 12 centimeters beneath the frost line (the maximum thickness of earth below that the soil doesn’t freeze). The section of pipe where the pipe meets the ground in the frost line and at the end of the line where the water flow is where the pipe generally freezes.
    2. Property owners who choose an above-grade solution should extend the release line from the home at a downward incline. The pitch does not have to be steep, but continuous so that the water may flow. A hose that is smooth, stiff, and freeze-resistant should be connected to the end of the discharge hose and should release water at least 6 meters away from the base. If the pipe is properly sloped, gravity will keep the water flowing (standing water from the pipe is more likely to freeze).
  • The sump pump discharge line and also the ingestion section should be coated to shield against freezing. A larger diameter pipe can be attached to the end of the toaster hose using straps and wires, leaving an air gap between the hose and the larger pipe. As a more straightforward insulation option, the exterior pipe can be coated with hay (a natural insulator) and a tarp. Automotive anti-freeze shouldn’t be poured into the sump pump.
  • The sump basin ought to be assessed regularly, and the sump pump also has to be tested from time to time to make sure it’s working properly. Additionally, the sump pump must not discharge water on the sidewalk and drive to prevent ice.
  • When the sump pump pipe has been frozen, portable heaters can be used to thaw it. Using a blow torch to thaw the line is a bad idea as that can cause harm or harm to the house. If DIY thawing isn’t an option, it is best to call a professional builder to thaw the line out.

The PuroClean Guelph team stands ready to provide expert restoration solutions to any home affected by fire, water, or mold harm. Visit their website for more information.