A Water Powered Sump Pump may sound like a cool idea, however the premise of using municipal water to pump out your sump pit comes with serious drawbacks:
1. The waste of fresh drinking water. How many times have you seen a commercial about a faucet, or toilet, or dishwater and the amount of water they SAVE. Alot, that’s because it’s important. These water powered sump pumps totally waste fresh drinking water, using a water powered sump is like dumping hundreds of gallons of water out on your lawn.
2. They have to be installed with the proper backflow device. In a low pressure situation (water main break, hydrant flushing, fire nearby, power goes out in the municipality which would affect the pumping stations) dirty contaminated water from your sump pit can be sucked into the fresh drinking water supply, creating a huge health hazard.
This is where the plumbing pro comes in. Most manufacturers of water powered sump pumps say right in the instructions, that an RPZ (highest level and most expensive backflow protection) must be installed with the unit. An RPZ must be installed to city and state code and most of the time requires a city permit. Most of the time this is above a do-it-yourselfer and its money well spent in hiring a licensed plumber. In addition, the RPZ requires an annual inspection by a registered backflow tester. If you install a water powered sump pump without an RPZ, you’re skimping on protection and putting your family at risk.
The best thing to do, is forget the water powered sump pump and choose a reliable battery backup sump pump, where you have none of the water wasting and non of the potential health hazards associated with water powered sump pumps.