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6 Reasons Why Your Sump Pump Isn't Working During a Hard Freeze

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, February 20, 2019

In this episode, Richard Comeras (aks “The Crackman”) shares his top six reasons why your sump pump fails during a hard freeze. Some will make perfect sense…some may surprise you. Listen and enjoy!

It’s time once again for the “Crack Man Podcast” hosted by A1 Foundation Crack Repair. We’re here with the Crackman himself, Rich Comeras. Rich has 30 years of experience in the construction industry and over 20 years experience as the founder and president of A1 Foundation and Crack Repair Inc. His podcasts provides expert basement water proofing, concrete repair, and preventative maintenance tips for homeowners and businesses. A1 Foundation’s excellent insight will help avert a disastrous flood within the basement, health problems associated with water infiltration within the basement, and protect your biggest investment….your home.

The topic for today’s podcast: 6 Reasons Why Your Sump Pump Isn't Working During a Hard Freeze

Narrator: Hey Rich, just out of curiosity, what is the temperature today there in Hudson Mass?

Crackman: It’s three degrees…a little chilly out there.

Narrator: When the temperatures get that low, I suppose it can effect the proper operation of a home’s sump pump. Yes?

Crackman: Absolutely. We’ve been getting calls. One call we got recently about a sump pump not working. The first things I ask people to do is check the outlet that the pump is plugged into and make sure that outlet is working. You need to make sure that you have power to that outlet. During this freeze that we’re having, we’ve got a number of calls about sump pumps not working. So I ask them about the pipes that they use to vacate the water out. People who are using corrugated (usually black) pipe are finding that water within those pipes is freezing. What is happening is that the water is getting into each rib, it freezes, then the water around that next rib freezes, and before you know it that whole ribbed pipe is frozen. So I never recommend you putting a ribbed pipe in there. You want a nice smooth PVC pipe there, and at a good angle. That’s a second reason that pipes freeze. Another reason why pipes freeze is that they have no check valve. The check vale prevents water from going back into the pit. You want to make sure that you have a check valve. Another reason sump pumps fail is because their aged. Mechanical devices will only last so long. We get calls that the float that goes up and down get stuck on the sides of the pit that it’s in. The last reason that people are having problems with sump pumps is because they put a pump in that is oversized, it’s too big, too much horsepower. It causes the pump to cycle too quickly and it is causing them to burn out. So you need to know what size pump to be putting in there.

Narrator: This is really good information, Rich. So if your sump pump suddenly isn’t working during a hard freeze, consider the Crackman’s common reasons why sump pumps fail. You just might save yourself some money.

If y'ou have any issue with your home’s sump pump or want more information regarding foundation crack repair and basement water proofing, please visit or call Rich at (866) 929-3171. Or you can email Rich at

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A-1 Foundation Crack Repair, Inc. is a fully registered home improvement contractor. Contact us today to talk to a knowledgeable, master waterproofing professional.