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Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 6:27 am
by fayew
Hi there,
We have done our sump pump installation a few years back. Recently, we noticed that bad smell is coming from the pit. I think the smell is coming from the sump pump hole. The sump pump pit can be clogged with the debris or sludge. I’m looking for easy tips to solve this issue. Is it safe to put a little bleach into it? I’m afraid whether it damages the sump.
I just come across an article describing the easy methods to get rid of the smell.
Disconnect the sump pump from the electrical outlet and leave it to pump the gunk out.
Spray the sump pit with a garden hose. Again allow it to pump the gunk out
Repeat it until water is clear.
Clean the pit using bleach
Add some oil in it to block the smell.
Can I refer this steps to clean my sump pump? Any suggestions will be a great help. Many thanks.

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:32 am
by Frank in Crete
If I read your post right the sump is to get rid of excess rainwater/ground water in a basement or other low lying position.

As you have suggested check the sump for large items and remove and then run the pump cleaning out with a hose until the water runs clear bleach or disinfectant in relatively small quantities will not harm anything but once flushed out may not bee necessary.

If its just ground water getting in there should not be any smell unless organic matter is also getting in, it could be a sign of a damaged foul drain discharging into the ground and the water course washing it into the sump. this time of year I am surprised that their is any or much water in the sump at all anyway, has it always had water in this time of year if not again this would be a sign that there is another source of water filling it like a cracked or broken drain.

You could test your existing foul drains by flushing some drain tracing dye down the toilets Amazon sell it, and looking for the colour in the sump this could take a few flushes and several hours before it shows.

Putting oil in will act as a floating barrier for smells but if the water level drops and this is pumped out depending on where it is being discharged could cause problems, my advice would be not to use oil but try to make a reasonably airtight lid to the sump .

Difficult to give more advice without knowing the exact situation of the pump but hope this helps.

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:01 am
by Mixos
Frank's advice is good. The tracing dye is a good idea. Is there a drain pipe feeding into your sump pit or is it simply a pit that collects groundwater from the surrounding earth and rock? If you have a pipe feeding into the pit you need to check that you are not getting raw sewage in there from a broken foul drain outside your property. That's what happened to us last winter. We suddenly began to get flooded every time there was heavy rain and we eventually traced the problem to a combination of (1) a missing drain cover in the road uphill from the house and (2) broken drains just outside the house. We don't have a sump pit so the effect was that heavy rain sent a mix of storm water and sewage into our bottom room, which is below road level. Not nice. The local Dimos and water company appear to blame each other and the problem is still not fixed six months on, but in the mean time, at considerable expense, I've had a non-return valve built into the drain just outside our gate.

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:06 am
by Kilkis
A lot of swimming pools in Crete have a pump house that is well below ground level. If that starts to fill with water during the rainy season it can blow the main pool pump, which can be expensive to replace. People usually install a float operated drainage pump to pump out any rainwater ingress. I've not seen any with an actual sump although it would make sense.

Warwick

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:29 am
by scooby
Kilkis wrote:A lot of swimming pools in Crete have a pump house that is well below ground level. If that starts to fill with water during the rainy season it can blow the main pool pump, which can be expensive to replace. People usually install a float operated drainage pump to pump out any rainwater ingress. I've not seen any with an actual sump although it would make sense.

Warwick
I suppose it can but in my experience the trip switch goes before that happens.

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:48 am
by peebee
Kilkis wrote: I've not seen any with an actual sump although it would make sense.
Warwick

I've done some minor work in two different pump houses here, both of them had a small sump about 50cm square and about 30cm deep with a float operated submersible pump sitting in it.

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 5:42 pm
by Tim
Peebee is right. I've recently installed float pumps in underground plant rooms at the facility I manage. The problem with them is that the float doesn't operate until the unit's sitting in about 5 inches of water - therefore sitting them in a sump makes a lot of sense - keeps the floor dry, although there's always a residual pool of water in the sump.

Tim

Re: Bad smell from sump pump

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 6:54 pm
by Jeffstclair
Maybe there is a rodent drowned in the sump ...