Friday, April 16, 2010

Cool Technology of the Week

I recently wrote about the floods in Massachusetts and eliminating single points of failure in my home sump pump system. Here's the home "disaster recovery" infrastructure I built.

I have a 18"x18" sump pit 24 inches deep in my basement. It has a gravel bottom and collects water during the Spring thaw and heavy Spring rains.

The primary pump is 1/3 Horsepower Wayne Cast Iron Pedestal Pump connected via a Wayne 1-1/2" check valve to a Wayne 1-1/2" discharge hose. This is a very simple and elegant system - just 3 parts and no connections that can break/leak outside the sump pit.

The backup pump is a high flow battery operated Wayne ESP25 Submersible Pump connected to check valve and discharge hose. It too has just 3 parts and no connections to leak outside the sump pit.

The backup pump is connected to a Wayne 75 Amp Hour Deep Cycle Battery on a continuous charging system with alarm notification if the power fails or the battery ceases to charge.

The end result - 2 pumps, 2 power sources, 2 check valves, 2 discharge hoses (securely mounted with 2 supports per hose) eliminating any single points of failure.

I can now rest assured that my basement is as reliable as my data center!


Anonymous said...

I put in a similar set up that I cobbled together from an old wire closet UPS an APC 1250va. its external batteries have long since been out of production but the charge circuit and inverter were still good. After wiring two new deep discharge 12v batteries in series to get to its 24v battery voltage I use that inverter to power a second full sized pump that discharges on the opposite side of the house from the primary. To keep it secondary I just elevated the pump on a pair of bricks keeping the pumps float switch from triggering the pump unless the depth in the pit gets to deep. Both pumps could be running in this configuration if needed.

Michael Warden said...

Why not use a non-battery backup, like one of the water pressure driven backup systems?

TM Claude said...

This a very ingenious design. How much time went into this?

John Halamka said...

This took two Saturday afternoons to design and build. Our challenge is that we have a great deal of water in the basement for about 2 weeks each Spring, then none the rest of the year. Hence the non-electrical water pressure driven backup system mentioned above will not work because it cannot pump out the water fast enough.