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The Top 10: Which is the Best Sump Pump?

Find the perfect sump pump for your basement today. We’ve got all the reviews and information you need right here.

best-sump-pump-reviews-of-the-yearThese are the 10 best sump pumps available right now.

Each comes with amazing customer feedback and reviews.

Take a look at the comparison table below where you can sort the values according to what matters to you.

After the table you can find out more about each of these top rated sump pumps and which one we recommend.

We’ve got a buyer’s guide too, with everything you need to know before you buy.

PictureModelRatingPriceHorse PowerMax Flow rate (GPH)MaterialPositivesNegatives
superior-pump-91330Superior Pump 913304.5$1/32400ThermoplasticDurable & energy efficient motor, can pump water to 25 feet in height, large diameter discharge pipe for high capacity pumpingNot as sturdy as a cast iron pump
wayne-cdu980eWayne CDU980E4.4$$$$3/44600Cast Iron/ Stainless SteelDurable & reliable construction, 5 year warranty, no clogging, powerfulExpensive
Zoeller-M53 Mighty MateZoeller M534.7$$$$1/32700Cast IronAmazing reliability, no clogging, choice of plumbers, top build qualityNot as powerful as others in the same price bracket
simer-2305-04Simer Geyser II4.1$1/41260ThermoplasticLightweight & portable, 1 year warranty, simple operation, great valueOne of the least powerful
Wayne-VIP50Wayne VIP504.1$1/22500ThermoplasticCorrosion resistant, removes water down to 1/8 inch, made in USA, 1 year warrantyNot the longest warranty we've seen
superior-pump-92341Superior Pump 923414.3$$1/32700Cast IronBuilt to last, efficient motor, easy cleaning, good value, 3 year warrantyWon't fit in small sump pits
flotec-fppm3600dFlotec FPPM3600D4.1$$1/33480Thermoplastic/Cast IronGreat water flow, fits in small/narrow sump pits, reliable, easy installationLouder engine than a submersible sump pump
Zoeller M98Zoeller M984.3$$$$$1/24320Cast ironAmazing build quality, huge capacity to pump, corrosion resistant, won't clogExpensive, only one year warranty
liberty-pumps-257Liberty Pumps 2574.6$$$$1/33000Cast IronEnergy efficient motor, 3 year warranty, fits small sump pits, durable & dependableAbove average price
little-giant-6-ciaLittle Giant 6-CIA4.3$$$1/32760Cast IronReliable, for continuous use, can pump large volumes of water, well regarded by ownersWill only fit larger sump pits

Notes: Max Flow Rate = gallons per hour (GPH) of unwanted water it can remove.

Top 10 Sump Pump Reviews

Let’s take a look at each of these sump pumps in a bit more detail. Don’t miss our sump pump buyer’s checklist at the bottom of the page either.

Zoeller-M53 Mighty MateZoeller M53             OUR TOP PICK – Best Submersible Sump Pump

The Zoeller M53 D is said to be the choice of plumbers. They regard the build quality, reliability, and performance of this pump to be some of the best.

It features a 1/3 HP motor, which can be started automatically with a float activated switch. This means the pump will start up when the water reaches a certain level. A feature like this means the device can be left alone to protect your basement, even when you are not at home.

The motor gives a maximum water flow rate of 2700 GPH or 2040 GPH @ 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. This kind of capacity is more than enough to protect most homes from flooding.

The pump is housed in a cast iron casing and has a non-clogging design. The cast iron housing provides a solid base for the pump to work. The screws and fastenings are stainless steel so there are no materials that will rust or corrode. The units are rigorously tested after assembly, and are watertight, dust-tight, and pressure tested. Zoeller build machines of real quality and this model will never let you down.

The discharge pipe is 1-1/2″ NPT. Impressively, it will pass 1/2″ spherical solids too. This is the standard discharge pipe dimension and allows the system to work at large capacities. If you wanted to fix this to a garden hose you would need an adapter. They are relatively inexpensive and easy to operate.

Bottom Line: The Zoeller M53 sump pump is more expensive than most models with a 1/3 HP engine, but it is assembled with top quality components and meticulously put together and tested. It will never let you down. This Zoeller sump pump reviews really well on sites like Amazon too. Just ask the 500+ customers that rated it so highly. This is the sump pump we would choose above all others to protect our homes.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 2700 GPH max flow rate or 2040 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Float activated automatic switch
  • Cast iron

superior-pump-91330Superior Pump 91330                BEST BUDGET CHOICE (great for the garden too)

This small sump pump is one of the cheapest models we have looked at in our guide. Cheaper pumps do exist, but they don’t have anywhere near as impressive a rating as this pump has. This model has been reviewed well over 2000 times and still has a 4.5 star rating.

Despite being much cheaper than most other pumps, it still packs an impressive 1/3 HP engine. This means it can pump water up to 25 feet in vertical height. It will pump water at a maximum flow rate of 24000 gallons per hour, or 1680 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. The discharge pipe has a large 1-1/4″ top to allow a high water flow through it. This model also has a clever filter type bottom which will not allow debris to enter the unit. It will also keep working with water depths as low as 1/2 inch.

The pump is made of durable thermoplastic. Thermoplastic is really strong, but it is considered to be inferior to cast iron when used to build sump pumps. Cast iron is much heavier and provides a more solid base for the sump pump to operate. This is one of the reasons that this model is priced much lower than others. Another reason is that this is a manual pump. It will not work automatically once a certain level of flood water is reached. However, you can add an automatic float switch to it. The Basement Watchdog is among the best sump pump float switches.

Bottom Line: We love this cheap sump pump. It’s cheap but it’s still a reliable and trusted performer. Being made of thermoplastic means that it’s not as sturdy as a cast iron model, but that makes it lighter and more portable too. It wouldn’t be my first choice for a basement that gets flooded heavily and regularly, but if portability is key for you then you won’t do much better.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 2400 GPH max flow rate or 1680 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Thermoplastic construction

 

wayne-cdu980eWayne CDU980E            SUPER POWERFUL & RELIABLE

This model from Wayne features a powerful 3/4 Horsepower engine which is the strongest we have looked at. This gives a maximum water flow rate of 4600 gallons per hour or 3500 at 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. This kind of power should be able to handle flooding basements with ease.

This pump features a vertical float switch. This means that when the water reaches a certain level, the pump will automatically start working. This feature means you can rest assured that your home is being protected, even when you are not there.

The CDU980E comes in a stainless steel motor housing and durable cast iron base. These materials give it weight and sturdiness. It will never be moved by strong water flow. The pump itself features clever design to filter debris and make sure it doesn’t get clogged easily. As it is a submersible pump it is not suitable for small sump basins/pits. It would need a pit of at least 11 inches in diameter. The discharge pipe can run in 1-1/2″ diameters.

Bottom Line: This is one of the best submersible sump pumps, and is the top choice for homes at the most risk from flooding. It has the most powerful engine, which means it is capable of shifting more unwanted water than any other. It also comes very highly regarded by more than 240 happy customers on Amazon.

Key Features:

  • 3/4 HP motor
  • 4600 GPH max flow rate or 3500 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Vertical automatic float switch
  • Stainless steel/cast iron
  • 5 year warranty

Best Budget Choice

Superior Pump 91330

1/3 HP Sump Pump

- Amazing Value

- Lightweight & Portable

- Great Capacity

- Suitable for Garden Use

Our Top Pick

Zoeller M53

1/3 HP Sump Pump

- Choice of Plumbers

- Amazing build quality & Reliability

- Automatic Operation

- Really Highly Rated

Next Best Thing

Wayne CDU980E

3/4 HP Sump Pump

- Massive Capacity

- Automatic Operation

- 5 Year Warranty

- Durable & Sturdy

simer-2305-04Simer Geyser II                 THE CHEAP OPTION

The Geyser II is the cheapest sump pump in our top ten. But, don’t be fooled into thinking that it’s not any good. It’s a great piece of kit that will do an amazing job in the right circumstances. The right circumstance would be someone who is looking for a small sump pump that is portable. As this unit is made of thermoplastic, it is considerably lighter than the cast iron models. This means it is not quite as sturdy and robust, but this also means it can be much more easily moved. This is great for gardens that get flooded (it includes a garden hose adapter), or even homes that are vulnerable in numerous places. It also has a simple plug-in operation that makes using it in different places much easier.

The pump packs a 1/4 HP motor. This gives a maximum pumping capacity of 1260 GPH or 1020 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. These aren’t the biggest figures you’ll see in this area, but that is the trade-off for portability.

The unit comes with a 1 year warranty.

Bottom Line: Cheap but definitely cheerful! Being lightweight and portable makes this a great alternative to the heavy cast iron models. If your water problems strike in a variety of different places then this pump is a great fit.

Key Features:

  • 1/4 HP motor
  • 1260 GPH max flow rate or 1020 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Thermoplastic construction
  • Portable
  • 1 year warranty

 

Wayne-VIP50Wayne VIP50                GREAT VALUE PICK

The Wayne VIP50 falls in the cheaper price bracket, but still packs a heavy punch. It has a 1/2 HP motor that is capable of shifting 2500 GPH at its maximum rating, or 1550 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. These kinds of figures are comparable with models that cost much more.

The VIP50 is capable of pumping water down to 1/8 inch in depth. It will even pass solids of up to 1/2 inch in diameter.

The unit features a corrosion resistant, thermoplastic construction. As we mentioned before, this means it is lighter and more portable. But, it is not as robust as a cast iron model.

It is compatible with 1-1/4 inch diameter discharge pipe for the bigger jobs, but it will also take a 3/4 inch adapter to hook up with a garden hose.

Bottom Line: This pump gives you the most bang for your buck. There’s not a model that we’re aware of that gives you as much power for as few dollars. If you’re looking for a cheap sump pump then this is for you.

Key Features:

  • 1/2 HP motor
  • 2500 GPH max flow rate or 1550 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Thermoplastic construction
  • US made
  • 1 year warranty

 

superior-pump-92341Superior Pump 92341               TOP BUILD QUALITY

This model from Superior Pump has a 1/3 HP engine that is rated at 2760 GPH at maximum capacity and 1800 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe lift. It has an automatic float switch operation. This means it will turn itself on and off automatically according to the water depth. However, this switch is removable should you wish to run it continuously as a utility pump.

It features a solid and durable cast iron construction. This material gives it weight which means it will not get dislodged from its position. The construction also features a removable filter screen. This makes it easy to clean and maintain. It also has a dual seal to make sure that is completely watertight.

This unit comes UL listed. This means it has passed government regulated safety tests. This mark means you can be assured of its quality. If that wasn’t enough, it also comes with a 3 year warranty to ease the more anxious minds.

Bottom Line: This is a mid-price submersible pump that has all the perks and features that you should need.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 2760 GPH max flow rate or 1800 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Cast iron construction
  • Automatic float switch
  • 3 year warranty

 

flotec-fppm3600dFlotec FPPM3600D               BEST FOR SMALL SPACES

This Flotec model is the only pedestal pump we have featured in our top ten. This wasn’t a conscious decision, but the submersible pumps just seem to be a bit more reliable and robust. However, this pedestal model bucks the trend. It comes highly regarded by any happy customers. The major advantage of a pedestal sump pump like this is that it fits small, narrow sump pits. This model will fit in a sump basin of just 12 inches diameter.

It features a 1/3 HP motor which will shift 3480 GPH at maximum output or 2460 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe elevation. These are really impressive figures for a motor rated at just 1/3 HP. In fact, it has one of highest capacities to move water that we have seen. The motor is automatically started and stopped by an automatic float switch. This makes it able to protect against flooding even when you are not at home or sleeping.

It has a cast iron and thermoplastic construction, and also a non-clogging operation.

Bottom Line: If you can only manage a small sump pit then this is the perfect pump for you. It is the best rated pedestal pump we have seen, and it can move a serious amount of water too.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 3480 GPH max flow rate or 2460 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Cast iron/thermoplastic construction
  • Automatic float switch
  • 1 year warranty

 

Zoeller M98Zoeller M98               THE ROLLS ROYCE OF SUMP PUMPS

The Zoeller M98 sump pump is the most expensive we have featured in our guide. With this price tag you get a submersible pump of unrivaled quality. Its components are only the best and they are rigorously tested in assembly. The unit is made of cast iron, with stainless steel bearings and fastenings, and a carbon and ceramic shaft seal. The construction will not rust or corrode and has a high tensile strength.

It features a 1/2 HP motor.  This motor is capable of pumping 4320 GPH at maximum capacity and 3060 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe elevation. These are considerable figures and make it one of the highest capacity sump pumps we have come across. It can easily shift large volumes of water out of a flooded basement. The motor is turned on and off using a float switch. This means it is capable of looking after your basement on its own. When the water is detected it will turn on. When it disappears it will turn itself off again to save energy and to stop itself from overheating (it needs water to cool). It also has a safety feature to prevent it from overheating.

It will fit a 1-1/2 inch discharge pipe. It is also able to pass solids of up to 1/2 inch in diameter.

Bottom Line: This unit is real quality, but it comes at a higher price. If you have a basement full of prized possessions then it might be worth paying a bit more for a sump pump like this that will never let you down.

Key Features:

  • 1/2 HP motor
  • 4320 GPH max flow rate or 3060 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Cast iron construction
  • Automatic switch
  • 1 year warranty

 

liberty-pumps-257Liberty Pumps 257                 RELIABLE PERFORMER

The Liberty Pumps 257 is a premium sump pump. It has a durable cast iron casing which protects the motor 1/3 HP motor. The motor provides a maximum water flow rate of 3000 GPH or 2220 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe elevation. It will pump water up to a maximum discharge pipe height of 21 feet. The motor is designed with efficiency in mind, and is said to reduce electrical usage by up to 40%.

The pump features a vertical float switch. This means it can turn itself on and off automatically according to the presence of flood water. This feature is perfect for those who worry about flood water coming in while they are sleeping or away on vacation. This model also comes with an impressive 3 year warranty.

It will fit discharges of 1-1/2 inch and will even pass solids of 1/2 inch.

Bottom Line: This is a premium sump pump that is durable and effective. It has a powerful and efficient motor, that can be left to protect your property even while you are sleeping. It comes in the higher price bracket, but you can relax in the knowledge that it’s well built and durable.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 3000 GPH max flow rate or 2220 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Cast iron construction
  • Automatic float switch
  • 3 year warranty

 

little-giant-6-ciaLittle Giant 6-CIA                 EFFICIENT AND DURABLE

This model from Franklin Electric packs an impressive 1/3 HP motor. This motor removes 2760 GPH of water at its maximum output. It also passes 1740 GPH at 10 feet of discharge pipe elevation. It will operate up to a maximum discharge pipe height of 18 feet.

The motor is controlled by a diaphragm pressure switch. This means that it will operate automatically when a certain water pressure is reached (certain depth). It will also shut-off automatically when the water goes below a certain pressure. Sump pumps require the presence of water to cool the motor. So it is important to have a feature like this to stop it overheating once the water is gone.

It is housed in a durable epoxy coated iron cast housing. This is corrosion and rust proof.

This unit will fit discharge pipes of 1-1/2 inch. It also comes with an adapter so that it can be hooked up to a garden hose. The pump will fit sump pits of 10 inches in diameter.

Bottom Line: This pump is designed for continuous and prolonged use. It will work away quietly and effectively in the background. The water flow rate drops of considerably at heights above 10 feet of discharge pipe elevation, so it is best suited to be used in places where the pipe doesn’t stretch to high.

Key Features:

  • 1/3 HP motor
  • 2760 GPH max flow rate or 1740 GPH @ 10 feet discharge pipe lift
  • Cast iron construction
  • Automatic diaphragm pressure switch
  • 1 year warranty

What’s a Sump Pump?

A sump pump is a device that will remove water that has accumulated in a low space. A low space is what we call a ‘sump basin’ and it is usually found below the water table. These places are typically basements in homes.

A sump pump will divert the unwanted water away from the home to a safer place. It is usually installed at the lowest point of the basement, and it will keep the area dry and free of flooding.

Sump pumps are widely used in homes across the country now, as freakish weather becomes more common. Areas at risk of rapidly melting snow, and bursting river banks are particularly vulnerable to large amounts of water appearing in short spaces of time. Without sump pumps people’s homes are at risk of water damage to possessions, rot, mold, rust, and even poor air quality from the damp, moldy environment that flooding creates.

How Do They Work?

A sump pump is installed at the lowest point in your home. This is usually the basement. It needs to be placed in a hole that we call a sump pit. The sump pit is dug below the floor level of the basement, and it should have a stone or gravel base. The sump pump sits in this gravel pit.

The pump has a discharge pipe that comes out of the top of the unit. This pipe takes the unwanted water to a place where it can drain safely away from your home.

Most of these sump pumps will turn themselves on automatically. They do this by sensing the pressure of the water (which is greater than air pressure), or by using a float.

When activated the pump uses centrifugal force to move the unwanted floodwater up the discharge pipe. I won’t go into detail about how this works as it’s quite complicated. For the science buffs, the video below explains how sump pumps work really well. It’s even pretty interesting.

The Different Types of Sump Pump

There are two main sump pump designs. They each do exactly the same job, but in slightly different ways. There are positives and negatives to each of them. Let’s take a look at them.

submersible-sump-pumpSubmersible Sump Pump

The submersible sump pump sits in the water. The pump is located at the bottom of the unit, with the discharge pipe coming out of the top. The whole unit is waterproof so there is no danger of water getting anywhere it shouldn’t. The pump has a filter screen to stop any debris getting inside and breaking it. This style of pump is thought to be more efficient, quieter (because it is submerged in water), and longer lasting.

pedestal-sump-pumpPedestal Sump Pump

These pumps are much bigger. This time the pump is elevated high out of the water on the top of the unit. As the pump is not submerged in water, these units are a bit louder than the submersible version. However, this means that they are cheaper too. This style of pump is also ideal for deep, narrow sump pits.

Do I Need a Sump Pump?

If you are fortunate enough to live in an area that is constantly dry and sunny then you likely don’t need a sump pump. If you live in an area that is susceptible to flooding, or you have had an issue with dampness in your home then a sump pump might be right for you.

The first step is to find out just how much moisture is affecting your home. Maybe, a dehumidifier is all that is needed. You can do this by sticking sheets of plastic to the surfaces of your basement and see how much moisture collects over a few days.

Poor drainage around your building’s foundations is one of the main reasons for moisture getting into a basement. Make sure you check that your gutters are directing water well away from your home, and that they are in good condition too.

If you find that your basement is being affected by more moisture than a dehumidifier can deal with, then you probably need a sump pump. The next stage is making sure you get the right one for your home. Different models of sump pump offer many different options. This is where we can help.

Before You Buy: Checklist

Make sure you get the perfect model for your home. Have all bases covered with our checklist.

  1. Choose the right style of pump for your home. There are two types of sump pump available. There’s the submersible type which are regarded as being more efficient, reliable, and quieter (because the motor is submerged in water when it is operating). Then there is the pedestal type pump. This is the tall thin pump which has the motor on top of the pole, clear of the water. These types are better for small, narrow sump pits as they take up less floor space. If space isn’t an issue then the submersible type pump is probably the best bet.
  2. Do you need an automatic switch? The more expensive models are automatic sump pumps. These come with automatic switches. These are usually operated according to the water depth, but work according to water pressure too. The switch will tun the pump on when it senses a certain amount of water present. It will turn it off too when the water goes below a certain level. This means you can relax in the knowledge that the automatic sump pump can be left to look after your basement when you are not around. Most pumps need water to cool the motor too. So they run the risk of overheating if they are operating when there is no water present. The switch acts as a safeguard to protect the motor. Pumps without switches are manually operated. They are also much cheaper.
  3. How many horsepower do you need? Sump pump motors are rated in horsepower. The more powerful motors will have a higher horsepower rating. If your home is at risk from large amounts of flood water then you should choose a more powerful motor which is capable of pumping more water out. The higher the horsepower rating the higher the energy consumption too. A rating of 1/2 horsepower should suffice in most occasions.
  4. Be aware of the discharge pipe height you will be running. The discharge pipe is the exit route for the unwanted water. It will run upwards to a safe place for the water to drain, away from your home. The higher you run this pipe upwards from the sump pump, the less effective the pump will be. Manufacturers give their maximum water flow rate (the amount of water they can remove in gallons per hour) at a height of 5 inches. This isn’t usually a practical height. We’ve listed our sump pump’s effectiveness at a height of 10 feet too to give a better indication of their practical use. Be aware that if you run it higher then the water flow rate will decrease further. Make sure your sump pump will work effectively at your chosen discharge height.
  5. What material construction do you need? Sump pumps come in three different materials. Each has there own advantages.
    1. Thermoplastic – Cheaper, lightweight, and strong.
    2. Cast iron – Stronger and heavier than thermoplastic. It extra weight means it isn’t likely to be moved from its base by strong water flow. The top rated sump pumps are usually cast iron.
    3. Stainless steel – Strong and durable.
  6. Plan the size of your sump pit/basin. The sump pit is the ‘hole’ that your pump will sit in. It must be large enough so that the switch is not impeded. Larger sump pits are better as it can run a little longer each time, and have a longer time to cool off. A smaller pit will have to start and stop more frequently which wear the motor more.

 

That’s all for our guide to the best sump pump reviews. If you have any further questions then please leave a message at the bottom of the page, and we’ll do our best to get back to you as soon as possible.

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