3 Reasons Why Your Sump Pump is Constantly Cycling

When you hear your sump pump kick on, it should provide a sense of relief that the appliance is keeping your basement dry and clean. However, if the sump pump runs and runs and runs – and won’t turn off, that’s a sign of a problem that needs to be addressed.

3 Reasons Why Your Sump Pump is Constantly Cycling

Excessive or constant cycling can wear out the motor and lead to the sump pump breaking down for good. If your sump pump is repeatedly cycling, it could be due to a problem with the float switch, check valve, or discharge pipe.

Let’s take a look at the three most common causes of a sump pump that won’t turn off.

1. The float switch is stuck.

The float switch is the mechanism that determines when the sump pump kicks on and moves the water out of the pit to wherever it is discharged. This part is called the float because it sits on top of the water and moves up and down with the water level. Once the water (and float) rises up to a certain point, the switch tells the pump to do its job.

So how would a float switch cause a sump pump to cycle constantly? Well, if the float is stuck, tangled in the electrical cord, or pinned to the wall of the basin, then it’s like a light switch that is jammed and can’t turn to the “off” position. To fix the issue, make sure the float is clear of any obstructions and able to move up and down smoothly. You can also replace the float switch, but at that point, it may be more cost-efficient to replace the entire sump pump unit.

2. A faulty check valve.

When the sump pump is activated, it pushes water up through a vertical pipe called the discharge pipe. The check valve is a one-way valve that prevents water from coming back down the discharge pipe and back into the pit. Over time, the check valve can wear out and eventually fail. So when you hear the sump pump constantly cycling, it could be because the water is going up then coming back down, over and over.

3. Problem with the discharge method

Water from a sump pump has to go somewhere. There are two commonly accepted discharge methods: 1) releasing above-ground away from the foundation, and 2) connecting to the municipal storm sewer. If there’s a break, clog, or other problem with the discharge, water may be backing up into the sump pump, which would cause it to cycle repeatedly.

Sump pump experts in the Schererville, IN, area 

When you hear your sump pump constantly running, the last thing you want to do is ignore the issue. Instead, bring in Reichelt Plumbing to put an end to the cycling issue so your sump pump can keep your basement dry and last as long as possible. Schedule an appointment today at (219) 322-4906.

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