The basement of a home is usually very underrated. It’s where many families store some of their most important documents, photos and heirlooms. Many families may turn the basement into an entertainment area, stocked with TVs, entertainment systems and speakers. Some may even turn the basement into a man cave, chock with video gaming equipment, sofa bed and fridge full of cold ones.

Despite all this, many people fail to protect the basement from the ultimate worst-case scenario: A sewage back-up. Imagine all those priceless photos, legal documents and other belongings that would be ruined in such an event. And, if you use the basement for entertainment, you won’t be doing a whole lot of entertaining for quite some time in a room that’s had a standing foot of sewage in it.

What can cause such an event, and how can you protect yourself from it?

Ejector pumps

When you flush the toilet, use the sink or do anything else in the home that involves waste water, you can thank both gravity and ejector pumps for making sure the waste leaves the home. When dumping water, gravity will move the water downward through the pipes scattered throughout the home. Then, at the waste’s lowest point, an ejector pump moves the waste through the final stretch before it arrives in the city sewage system (or for some, a septic system).

Since gravity alone can’t remove the waste from the home, what happens if that crucial step – the ejector pump – one day fails? If that occurs, flushed water and waste can build up in the pipes and eventually burst – usually at their lowest point, which for most homes is the basement. Unfortunately, for most ejector pumps, there’s no way to know when it has failed other than a sewage leaking event occurring in the home.

If you experience an ejector pump failure, make sure you bring in a professional plumber to fix it; due to the nature of what ejector pumps expel, you can’t take any chances with them.

Back-up pumps

Since most ejector pumps have no way of informing home owners when they have failed, it’s important that home have a back-up system in place that can take over automatically during ejector pump failures. These secondary pumps should rely on a different power source than the main ejector pump, such as a whole house power generator or batteries.

If you don’t have a back-up pump, you should consult with a professional plumber to select the right one for your home’s unique needs.

Don’t let a sewage nightmare become reality

Being a good steward for your home and for your family involves being prepared for disaster before it strikes. That’s why you should make sure to get regular check-ups on your ejector pump by a professional and ensure you have a properly installed back-up pump. Contact us to set up an appointment today, and call us at (630) 761-3400 to find out more about the services we provide.