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It acts as the first line of defense against water leaks and natural flooding. A sump pump will work when it’s needed even before you’re aware of the problem. If at all possible you want to avoid free-flowing water in your home, so adding an emergency backup sump pump is also an excellent idea.

As we’ve discussed before, water damage can be tremendously destructive if it’s not addressed in time. It’s also expensive to remediate, and, unfortunately, it’s often not covered by insurance. Because water damage is so common – it is the second most common homeowner’s insurance claim – insurance companies have gotten creative about what is and is not covered. Water damage from natural flooding is often not covered at all. In many geographic locations, people can’t even buy that kind of coverage from an insurer because the risk is too great. For other risks, like sudden or accidental discharge or sewer backup, every homeowner should consult his insurance provider for specifics and buy additional coverage if necessary.

Many homes already have sump pumps. Every home with a wet basement should have a sump pump ready to go into action in the event of rising water. Often homeowners will add an emergency backup sump pump to the sump pump as a way of further mitigating risk.


Isn’t one sump pump enough? Why would you need a backup? An emergency backup sump pump is a further line of defense for when flooding and the loss of electricity go together such as during a large storm. Sump pumps run on electricity, and if electric lines go out, they will not operate. Emergency sump pumps will, however, because they are powered either by city water or batteries.

Water powered emergency sump pumps will activate automatically if the primary sump pump fails. They convert city water into a high-velocity stream that creates a low-pressure vacuum. This vacuum draws sump water into an ejector nozzle where it is released by the sump. Water powered sumps use a lot of water to operate, so in drier areas, they are not ideal. They are very reliable and do not require much maintenance, but they do need a water supply pressure of 20 psi or more to operate.

This type of sump needs to have a new water line and a separate drain line as well as backflow prevention to prevent potable water contamination, but it will run without power as long as necessary. There are two types of water powered emergency sump pumps: above sump and in sump. The in-sump sump pump is immersed in the drain water, while the above-sump sump pump is above the sump.

Battery powered emergency sump pumps run on a separate (battery) power source. They are installed next to the primary pump and have a separate switch. When there is rising water, they automatically activate. A battery powered sump pump has an alarm that goes off when it is in use or when the battery power is low. Of course, the battery must be adequately charged for it to work during an emergency. These type of emergency backup sump pumps are easy to install, but the battery power must be regularly checked. The battery terminals should also be cleaned regularly and the battery replaced every few years.

Many homeowners also install alarms so that they can be notified if there is rising water, a power loss, or a change in temperature – either by the alarm itself or by message via their smartphone. These alarms have sensors that detect water and activate the alarm. This gives the homeowner a heads up before damage occurs. This is another layer of home protection on top of a sump pump and an emergency backup sump pump.

We at Lake Michigan Heating, Cooling,  Plumbing install all of the above for our customers: sump pumps, emergency backup sump pumps, and alarm systems. If you would like the peace of mind of knowing that your sump pump system will operate even if the power goes out during a storm, an emergency backup sump pump is your answer. Call us today to talk about how you can reduce the risk of water damage in your home.

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Our Neighbors Love Us

We highly recommend Dan and Lake Michigan Mechanical. He provides our rental and personal properties with professional, dependable and knowledgeable service.

Duana & Bonnie W.

Daniel came right down to fix a pump that was broken on a machine and the timing… was critical, he had a very difficult task completed promptly and I was returned to productivity faster than expected. Thank you I’m very happy.

Mark G.

Very professional and efficient job done. I recommend this technician highly!

Regency A.

Professional and knowledge. They did a great job identifying the problems we were having with our boiler. While other HVAC companies were telling us to replace our unit completely, they knew exactly what to fix to get us up and running, saving us thousands of dollars. I will be calling on them for future repairs I might need. Thank you, Daniel and team!!

Eva S.

So we have to get a shout out to Lake Michigan Mechanical. They were the only ones who could come do the repair today, everyone else was like three days or more out. They were really cool and made the best out of what was a really stressful day for us!! They were really respectful of keeping our door shut when they went in/out (you would not believe how many animals of ours have gotten out due to home repair people) and they cleaned up after themselves!! So far the hot water seems to be working great!

Jessica G.

Very patient, great job educating us on the issue and explaining our different options

Amanda Z.

Dan and company were very prompt, efficient and fixed the problem at my Mothers’ house quickly. We were very happy with their service and how quickly they could come to fix the problem. I would highly recommend them.

Sarah Z.

I highly recommend Daniel with Lake Michigan Mechanical. Not only is he super friendly but he very professional and knows his stuff. I bought a new house and of course the current water heater died within a months time of buying the house. Daniel and staff were in and within 24 hours of me noting the problem we had a new heater. Thank you so much for great work!

Theodore S.

Daniel installed an Eternal Water Heater and we absolutely love it! He was quick and very knowledgeable about his products. The quality of his work is second to none!

Melissa K.

Daniel and the entire staff are very responsive. I have used Lake Michigan Mechanical throughout the years. They are professional and charge a fair rate. Both Nigel and Brandon did an outstanding job fixing my old A/C unit and installed the NEST thermostat. Well done gentlemen! Also, most recently installed a tank-less water heater. Once again did outstanding work by Daniel and Team!

Lauren M.

These folks were very knowledge and we love the straightforward pricing.

Satisfied Customer

Daniel and Aiden did an amazingly quick job responding to and repairing my broken furnace over a weekend. Cheers Gents!

Robert D.

The phrase first impressions are lasting impressions rings true with Daniel VanderHyde. He rescued us one Saturday morning after we tried “fixing” our leaky shower faucet ourselves. Hoping he could not only undo what we’d done, but be able to fix it without it being a major project was our biggest concern. And he did just that! We were very impressed with the pride and care he put into his work; he was truly a professional.

Jamie & Christie H.

Allendale, MI