What is the best battery backup system for a sump pump?

Posted by Jason Vickery / June 17, 2021 /

There are many products and systems being sold on the market today called battery backup sump pumps. These are add-on, DC battery-operated pumps that work in conjunction with your primary pump. They serve as a backup in case the primary pump becomes inoperable because of mechanical or electrical failure.

Sump pump battery backups are power converter/control systems designed for wall mounting and used in tandem with a battery or battery bank. This type of system is not intended to replace the function of the main pump in case of failure, but allows the main pump to seamlessly continue functioning at full capacity in the event of a power failure. A battery backup system for your sump pump is extremely important for providing peace of mind that your home will be protected from water damage. The ruggedness and durability of today’s sump pumps paired with regular inspection and maintenance can make mechanical failure or physical breakdowns quite unlikely. In fact, your sump pump system should last about ten years with the proper maintenance. The more common culprit for sump pump failure is power outage. Battery backup systems can be depended on to operate your pump even when utility power isn’t available, such as losing power during a thunder storm.

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To help understand the distinction between your two options — a battery-operated auxiliary pump and a battery backup for your existing pump — take a look at this comparison:

DC-Powered Auxiliary Pump AC-Powered Sump Pump Battery Backup
Second add-on pump Operates with existing pump
Reduced pumping capacity on its own Continues primary pump operation
12 VDC 100-128 VAC
Installed in the sump pit Mounted to wall


Sump pumps have been vastly improved over the years, and that has led to their increased reliability enhancing overall dependability when used in tandem with battery backup systems. With such an important topic as protecting your basement from water damage, you need all the facts before making a decision about what kind of system to use. 

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