Best Sump Pumps 2019 – The Ultimate Buyer’s Guide

A sump pump is a worthwhile investment. It protects your home or building from flooding and excess water damage, keeping you, your family, and your belongings safe. Many modern homes require that a sump pump be installed before the home can be sold.

If you are looking for a sump pump model for commercial or residential use, we’ve compiled a list of the five best sump pumps on the market today. Each type has its own pumping power, unique construction, and extra features, and most come with a limited 1-year warranty.

 Best Sump Pump Reviews


There’s a sump pump out there for everyone, but here are the best we’ve found.

#1. Superior Pump 91250 ¼ HP Thermoplastic Submersible Utility Pump

Superior Pump 91250 Utility Pump, 1/4 HP, Black

True to its name, this sump pump really is superior. It can move as much as 1800 gallons of water per hour and is capable of pumping it to a vertical height of twenty-five feet. Its reliable ¼ horsepower motor keeps it running efficiently, even in the toughest conditions. This model is built to last with durable thermoplastic construction and other components that have been thoroughly factory-tested.

The removable suction screen will filter out large debris to keep the water moving, and when it’s time to clean it out, you can easily remove it to do so. The pump itself can handle solids up to ⅛ inch while the screen catches anything bigger.

This sump pump is designed for consistent use and is reliable in domestic situations like swimming pools, flooded basements, or fountains. It’s fully submersible with a ten-foot waterproof power cord, so even in some of the worst flooding situations, you wouldn’t have to worry about malfunctions or electrical problems.

The motor is a split capacitor, continuous-duty component for consistent and reliable maximum performance—day in, day out. It has a high-efficiency amp that’s also thermally protected to deliver the power you need to get the job done as quickly as possible.

The durable construction prevents this sump pump from corroding, so you won’t have to worry about it wearing down quickly over time. The compact and sleek design fits into six-inch openings so that you can use it virtually anywhere. Side and bottom intakes allow this pump to continually move water to prevent flooding.

One of the things we love about Superior Pumps is that there are plenty of optional accessories to suit your needs. You can get float switches, check valves, alarms, lake screen filters, adapters, and hose kits. While this pump comes with everything you need in the box, you can attach these extra accessories to maximize and customize the pump.

 

CHECK CURRENT PRICE ON AMAZON

 

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Compact
  • Efficient
  • Versatile
  • Great customer service
Cons
  • No float switch or alarm

#2. WAYNE CDU980E ¾ HP Submersible Cast Iron and Stainless Steel Sump Pump

WAYNE CDU980E 3/4 HP Submersible Cast Iron and Stainless Steel Sump Pump With Integrated Vertical Float Switch

The cast iron and stainless-steel construction of this hearty WAYNE pump make it an extremely durable solution. And while this solid, reliable model is submersible, the power cord is only water resistant up to eight feet. But in addition to being really easy to operate, it’s also a breeze to install; it doesn’t require any plumbing changes, so you can do it all yourself.

It’s a larger unit than the first option on our list—the Superior Pump 91250—so it would require a larger sump pump basin, but the larger size means it’s more powerful and can move more water. It can pump 4600 gallons per hour with ten feet of lift, and has a corrosion-resistant motor housing to give it superior durability.

Top suction prevents clogging and air lock conditions, so you don’t have to worry about the need for weep holes for extra pressure and water release. The upper and lower ball bearing engineering with a sealed oil bath makes this sump pump virtually silent, so no matter how much you use it or for how long, it won’t disrupt your day-to-day activities.

The motor is also thermally protected, so no matter how hard it has to work to move your excess water, you won’t have to worry about the unit overheating. The built-in float guard protects the switch from getting hung up, and the reinforced polycarbonate impeller pulls water in at record rates while providing reliable performance and longevity.

What people really like about WAYNE products is that they’re assembled in the United States. If you prefer American construction and you like supporting manufacturing here at home, this pump is right up your alley. You can count on ingenuity and performance that will also comply with building codes…and will last for years to come.

 

CHECK CURRENT PRICE ON AMAZON

 

Pros
  • Assembled in the USA
  • Extreme durability
  • Complies with building codes
  • Top suction prevents air lock
  • High flow rate
  • Energy efficient
Cons
  • Only ten feet of lift
  • Cord is water resistant, not waterproof, up to eight feet

#3. Zoeller M53 Mighty-Mate Submersible Sump Pump

Zoeller M53 Mighty-mate Submersible Sump Pump, 1/3 Hp

This 3/10 horsepower submersible sump pump is primarily for residential use in septic tanks and sump pits. It can easily pass up to ½-inch spherical solids while moving up to 43 gallons per minute at five feet of vertical height, which is less than impressive as compared to other models here in our reviews. It’s been tested thoroughly in the factory for sturdy construction and reliable use.

The Zoeller has a corrosion-resistant epoxy finish, and a cast-iron switch case, pump housing, and motor for extreme durability. Because this model doesn’t have any sheet metal parts, it won’t rust or corrode any time soon, and you can count on its longevity and performance in your home for many years to come. The stainless-steel screws, guard, switch arm, and handle give it even more reliability and consistency.

This pump has a neoprene square ring separating the pump housing and the motor, making it watertight. Another very attractive feature of this Zoeller is that it has no screens—which means no clogged screens to clean. The polypropylene float is buoyant and solid, while the motor is thermal overload-protected, so it won’t overheat. This oil-fill unit also has an automatic reset and is hermetically sealed for extra protection.

The cast iron sleeve bearings run through a bath of oil to keep this machine running smoothly in all conditions. The tricky part, however, is getting it installed correctly, which requires the skill and expertise of a plumber.

With the purchase of this sump pump, you can enjoy accessories like a pump stand, an alarm system, an electrical alternator control panel, variable level control switch, and piggyback variable-level float switch. All of these features help to make your sump pump safer and more efficient.

 

CHECK CURRENT PRICE ON AMAZON

 

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Durable
  • Corrosion-resistant
Cons
  • Low gallons per hour, only for residential use
  • Needs a plumber for installation
  • Power cord is not water resistant

#4. Superior Pump 915701/2 HP Thermoplastic Submersible Utility Pump

Superior Pump 91570 1/2 HP Thermoplastic Submersible Utility Pump with 10-Foot Cord

Yes, my friends—Superior has done it again. Here’s another reliable, durable pump that offers an affordable, versatile solution to all of your pumping needs. It offers a lot of power in a surprisingly compact package. Get this—not only can you can move up to 3300 gallons per hour, but you can do so up to twenty-five feet vertically.

The thermoplastic construction is what really gives this pump the versatility, power, and affordability to meet all of your sump needs. You get great performance and a lot of power—all for a smaller price tag. The removable suction screen allows you to clean out large debris by hand—but that shouldn’t happen too often, because this pump can handle ⅜-inch solids on its own.

Superior Pumps are engineered with high-quality parts and materials, which means that these machines are built to last. They’ve been tested in the factory to ensure they work under even the most extreme circumstances, and construction includes stainless steel shaft seals, copper motor windings, double o- ring seals, and split capacitors. The 91570 is fully submersible with a ten-foot power cord, as well as a garden hose adapter for convenience.

Superior Pump is family-owned and operated, making them one of the most reliable and dedicated pump manufacturers in the market. They make their products with you—the end consumer—in mind. They have been around for more than 150 years, so these quality products come from people you can trust. And they offer fantastic U.S.-based customer service if you ever need help, or have any questions at all about your Superior product.

 

CHECK CURRENT PRICE ON AMAZON

 

Pros
  • Reliable
  • Durable construction
  • Versatile
  • Affordable
  • Compact
  • Great customer service; family-owned
Cons
  • No float switch or alarm system

#5. WAYNE CDU790 ⅓ HP Submersible Cast Iron and Steel Sump Pump

WAYNE CDU790 1/3 HP Submersible Cast Iron and Steel Sump Pump With Integrated Vertical Float Switch

This fully submersible sump pump is made of cast-iron and stainless steel, making it extremely durable. And because this powerful ⅓ horsepower motor has been tested to one million cycles, you can trust that this USA-assembled sump pump is reliable.

The WAYNE CDU790 is capable of pumping 3800 gallons per minute up to ten feet vertically and is equipped with a mechanical float switch for consistent operation. It can be installed in an eleven-inch or larger sump basin, and the top suction contains a strainer that can filter debris and keep the pump from clogging. It is thanks to this unique top suction that this pump doesn’t require weep holes to prevent air locking.

The cast-iron seal plate prevents leaking and corrosion, and you can easily install this unit without a plumber. It’s easy to handle and simple to install.

The CDU790 features quiet operation, so no matter when it decides to run, it won’t interrupt your activities—or sleep. This is one of the most popular replacement pumps on the market because of its durability and easy installation. The mechanical seal is ceramic, ensuring a long life in even the most demanding scenarios.

The great thing about this WAYNE sump pump is the energy efficient motor. It features low running wattage and rated amperage. Think about it—if you need a sump pump in the first place, you have enough to worry about without it making your energy bills skyrocket. You can install this model yourself, saving you money, and you’ll enjoy quiet operations and less strain on your utility budget.

 

CHECK CURRENT PRICE ON AMAZON

 

Pros
  • Assembled in the USA
  • Extreme durability
  • Complies with building codes
  • Top suction prevents air lock
  • High flow rate
  • Energy efficient
Cons
  • Only ten feet of lift
  • Cord is water resistant up to eight feet, not waterproof

How to Install a Sump Pump

You can install a sump pump yourself; follow the instructions in the user’s manual. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • Electric drill/drill bits
  • Pipe cutter
  • Hammer
  • Wire ties
  • Pressurized fittings
  • Gravel
  • Corrugated pipe
  • PVC pipe
  • Cement
  • Sump pump
  • J hooks
  • Check valve (for vertical operation)
  • Increaser
  • Fittings
  • Silicone sealant

Locate where you want to put the sump pump, where the water pools. It should be close to a ground fault interrupter outlet (GFCI) to safely plug in the pump.

Dig a hole 6” deeper and 10” wider than the pump. Pour a 3”-layer of gravel into the hole. Place the sump in the hole and pour additional gravel around it until only two inches of the sump are exposed.

Glue a male adapter to the PVC discharge pipe, and attach the female adapter to the pump. Then drill a weep hole in the pipe that is six inches higher than the sump.

Using wire ties, tie the cord of the pump to the discharge pipe, then install the check valve at the open end of the discharge pipe. Place the pump into the sump and use PVC pipe and pressurized fittings to move water from the house as follows.

Install J hooks on your joists to hang the PVC pipe. Make sure you have a hole in an outside wall big enough to run the PVC through. Where the pipe exits, put silicone sealant in the hole and then complete all of the connections to make sure you direct water at least four feet away from your structure. Install the increaser to the PVC pipe on the outside of the house to ensure you spread out the water being deposited.

Put more gravel in the hole to keep the sump in place. Plug in the pump and put the cover on top of the sump.

Pros and Cons of Using a Sump Pump System

Sump pumps protect your home from water damage; they are good solutions for getting rid of excess water due to rain or underground water. The great thing about sump pumps is that they kick on automatically if they sense moisture in the basement.

Sump pumps work better than waterproof foundation coatings. If you have an external waterproof coating on your home, it will work to some extent, but not as well as a sump pump. Waterproof coatings can crack, weaken, or break over time.

Sump pumps are active. Tiles, coatings, and drains are passive. They attempt to prevent flooding, but they can’t respond after flooding has occurred. Your sump pump is always waiting for water…and then works to remove it.

Sump pumps do have a few challenges, however. They require electricity, so if you lose power, they won’t work; you should always have a battery backup.

Digging a hole for your sump pump creates a radon risk and potentially exposes you to chemicals in the ground. Many houses with a sump pump should also have a radon system, which adds to the cost of installing a sump pump.

While sump pumps require little maintenance, they do involve up-front installation costs, which are more expensive than typical waterproofing solutions.

How to Choose the Best Sump Pump

When choosing a sump pump, keep a few things in mind. Purchase a submersible pump if you have room; they are airtight, quiet, and they reduce the chance of moist air getting into the house. Opt for a cast-iron core to help transfer heat to the surrounding water; this lengthens the life of your pump. Avoid screen intakes to reduce clogging; an impeller can handle some solids. Keep fuel tank capacity in mind if you regularly have water in your basement.

Choose a mechanical switch instead of a pressure switch, and get a solid float so it can’t be waterlogged. You should also get an alarmed pump so you’ll always know how high your water level is. There are also transportable sump pumps, in case you need to move it to clean up water.

Conclusion

When you’re shopping for a sump pump, keep the above in mind before shopping the top sump pumps on the market. You’re bound to find the best sump pump for your needs among the many available options.