SAFE BATTERY BACKUPS FOR EXISTING MAIN SUMP PUMPS

If you need sump pump backup but extra space is unavailable in the sump pit and you want to maintain the pumping capacity of your main pump, you may decide to select a power inverter to generate AC power from a battery.

For the levels of power required to operate a sump pump, there are several such devices available. They range in price from approximately $400-$900. A factor to which the price variance is attributable is the origin of the product – made in the USA vs offshore. An accompanying factor is quality difference.

To a great measure, the price difference should be of secondary consideration to safety. Your goal is to protect your basement from flooding and in the process avoid creating a fire hazard. The inverter-based battery backup is a device which plugs into the electrical system of your house and should therefore meet electrical safety standards as well as have the safety recognition of insurance companies.

Here are some of the criteria which the safety standards address:

  • The operating temperature of the unit
  • The internal spacing between circuit board conductors
  • The insulation rating of the wires
  • The construction and wire gauge of the power cord
  • The soundness of the battery connections
  • Abnormal hookup by the user
  • Proper internal grounding

The safety regulation agencies in North America (UL and CSA) set the standards to which appliances should be manufactured, conditional to the receipt of their stamp of approval. There are certain states and provinces which even bar the sale of appliances which do not carry safety agency approval (for example. California, Ontario).

There are external signs which you should look for prior to purchasing a battery backup as they may provide an indication of the quality level of the product. Beware of inexpensive imported inverters lacking safety agency approval markings. Some signs of poor quality are thin, under-rated, and unbranded power cords and flimsy plastic battery cable connectors.

All Pump Sentry™ products are made in the USA. They are tested and approved to UL and CSA applicable standards and are ETL listed.

For information on recommended high efficiency pump models, contact sales@secamerica.com.