It’s likely that your home has an electric sump pump, either a pedestal model or a submersible model, if you have a basement. A sump pump pumps rain and groundwater away from your home.
But what happens in the event of long periods of heavy rain and severe weather, particularly if your home is prone to lose electricity during poor weather? Can a generator run a sump pump? Yes, a backup generator for the sump pump is the best way to avoid a basement flood in this situation.
If you want a 24-hour install and forget system then battery backup for existing sump pump is the way to go.
If want to power multiple pumps or additional appliances with your sump pump like a refrigerator or furnace, you should get a bigger generator. So, what size generator to run a sump pump? What size generator to run sump pump and fridge or furnace?
The generator size will depend on the HP (1/2 hp, 1/3 hp or 2 hp) of the sump pump and wattage of the other appliances you wish to run. Here is table summing up the generator watts needed for sump pump.
|Sump Pump (+ Appliances)
|Running Watts / Starting Watts
|Generator Size (Running Watts)
|1/3 HP Sump Pump only
|800 W / 1300-2000 W
|1/2 HP Sump Pump only
|1050 W / 2150-4100 W
|2000 - 3000 W
|3/4 sump pump
|1050 W / 3000 - 4000 W
|1 HP Sump Pump
|1200 W / 3500 - 4500 W
|1/2 HP Sump Pump and Refrigerator
|1700 W / 4500 W (extra 700 W /2100 W for Fridge)
|1/2 HP Sump Pump and Gas Furnace
|1700 W / 4500 W (extra 600 W /1800 W for Furnace)
|1/2 HP Sump Pump and Electric Furnace
|10 kW - 50 kW
|More Than 20 kW
So, from the above table if you wanted to know, will a 1200-watt generator run a sump pump? What about 1000 watt? Yes 1200 watt generator will work, but we recommend at least 2000 watt generator for sump pump backup.
Now for the types of generator for sump pump (which will be discussed later), there are automatic battery backup generators, indoor gasless generators with solar option, propane and natural gas generators, regular gas generators are available. Read on for our recommended list of best sump pump backup generators.
Top 6 Best Generators for A Sump Pump
Model & Features
Honda EU2200i 2200-Watt Super Quiet Inverter Generator
WEN 56200i Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator
EF ECOFLOW Indoor Generator w/ 160W Solar Panel
Champion 200988 3500-Watt Dual Fuel Inverter Generator
WEN 56380i Super Quiet 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator
Champion 100416 TRI Fuel Portable Natural Gas Generator
Sump Pumps with Auto Backups
Battery backup sump pumps systems automatically keep your sump pump running for few hours during a power outage by using a backup battery and inverter. We recommend BASEMENT WATCHDOG Big Combo CONNECT Model CITS-50 or the Wayne ESP25 Upgraded pumps.
Types of Backup generators for Sump Pumps
- Portable generators — Portable generators with 2000 watt can power your sump pump for days as long as you’ve got gasoline/propane/natural gas ready to use. In addition, a 3,500 to 7,000-watt generator can keep your refrigerator, furnace, and other critical appliances running.
- Standby generators — Automatic and hands-free safety. They do tend to be more expensive than other generators for sump pumps. Not only do they keep more than one appliance running even when the power goes off, but they do so automatically.
- Inverter/Battery backup system for sump pump — These are essentially power inverters made for sump pump. These automatic backup generator for sump pump can run your pump four few hours. If you want one we can recommend the 822PS – Sump Pump Backup System
If you want our opinion on power inverter vs. generator for sump pump, battery backups or power inverter can run you pump for hours until the battery lasts, on the other hand with a multifuel generator you power you pump until your stored gasoline, propane or natural gas runs out. If you want a battery backup then go with indoor solar generators like EcoFlow or BLUETTI.
Best Generator for Sump Pump – Detailed Review
1. Honda EU2200i 2200-Watt Super Quiet Inverter Generator
The Honda EU2200i is the best generator to run sump pump. Because of its compact and portable form, as well as the inverter technology. It’s super quiet, only 48 to 57 dB(A).
The EU2200i has a fuel capacity of 0.95 gallons and can run for up to 8.1 hours on a full tank. We tested the runtime and it’s fairly close to that (8.0 hours). Fuel consumption is around 0.12 GPH. We measured noise to be at 64db at 30ft under full load. The EU2200i generates a clean sine wave, providing <3% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD).
When it comes to power, the engine comes first. The EU2200i Honda generator for sump pump is powered by GXR120 engine. It’s a commercial engine, so it can run quietly, smoothly, and efficiently. The engine is small to other engines, yet at 121cc, the GXR120 is unmatched, making it the best small generator for sump pump around.
2. WEN 56200i Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator
WEN 56200i is our selection for the best inexpensive portable generator for sump pump. The WEN 56200i is powered by a 79.7 cc WEN OHV 4-stroke engine that runs on gasoline and generates 1600W while running and 2000W at peak power (120V).
The pull-start mechanism on this electric generator for sump pump is pretty conventional. It has a noise rating of 50 dBA. With its 1-gallon fuel capacity, the 56200i can run for up to 9.4 hours. This is one of the cheapest generators just for sump pump.
The 56200i power generator for sump pump generates a pure sine wave with a Total Harmonic Distortion of less than 1.2%, making it safe to use with sensitive electrical equipment (THD).
3. EF ECOFLOW Indoor Generator w/ 160W Solar Panel
The EcoFlow Delta 1300 is a portable power station/indoor generator for sump pump that can run your pump in the event of an emergency or power outage. This is also our choice for the best solar generator for sump pump and can run your sump pump 15-16 hours with single charge.
The EcoFlow DELTA 1300 gasless generator for sump pump generates no noise, emissions, or trouble of a gas-powered generators and stores power in a lithium-ion battery that can be charged by AC house current, a car DC plug, or included solar panels.
Overload and temperature protection are standard on the solar generator. The unit’s housing is built of high-quality aluminum and strong plastic, and it has two carrying handles. The EcoFlow Delta power station has an 800 charge cycle lifespan. After that, the capacity falls below 60%.
4. Champion 200988 3500-Watt Dual Fuel Portable Inverter Generator
The Champion 200988 generator for sump pumps offers power and versatility with its 120V and dual-fuel technology. When gasoline-powered, it has 3500W running and 4500W peak wattage. It has 3150 rated watts and 4500 peak watts when running on propane. This is enough
With a noise level of 61, this inverter generator to run a sump pump can be started with either a standard pull-start mechanism or an electric starter. To start your Champion sump pump back up generator with ease and convenience, all you need to do is turn the EZ Start Dial.
This backup power generator for sump pump can run for up to 14 hours on a single tank of gasoline and has a fuel capacity of 2.3 gallons. It can run on for up to 21 hours if you use propane (20 lbs. propane tank).
5. WEN 56380i Super Quiet 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator
The WEN 56380i is another good contender for the best gas generator for sump pump and fridge or other emergency appliances. When used with a furnace, refrigerator or sump pumps, the WEN 56380i portable generator is the perfect power source. Furthermore, it frequently sells for a fraction of the cost of more expensive 3500-watt inverter generators like the Honda EU3000is or the Generac 7127 iQ3500-3500 Watt.
This gas generator for sump pump’s noise level is kept to a minimum of 57 decibels (we measured 58 dB), which is ideal if you want something quieter than a lawnmower while still getting enough of power.
With a fuel capacity of 2.2 gallons, the 56380i can run for around 8.5 hours at 50% load on a full tank.
The design of this portable generator for sump pump backup is lightweight with wheels and cozy handle, making it easy to transport in and out. Overall, the WEN 56380i is a dependable and affordable backup generator for home sump pump.
6. Champion 100416 TRI Fuel Portable Natural Gas Generator
Tri-fuel technology in the Champion 100416 8000-watt generator allows it to run on gasoline, propane, or natural gas, and it provides 120/240V for your pump.
Most of you undoubtedly already know that gas and propane portable generators have different maximum wattages. When compared to propane, natural gas’s output is even lower. As a result of its lower kilojoule count, its energy output is lower.
When run on gasoline, this natural gas generator for sump pump has an operating wattage of 8000W and a peak wattage of 10000W. It has 7200 rated watts and 9000 peak watts when run on propane. Power output is rated at 7000W and starts at 8750W when run on natural gas.
The 8000-watt multi fuel generator has both a conventional pull starter and an electric starter. With the EZ Start Dial, you can easily and intuitively turn on the engine. Even though it’s not one of the largest inverter generators out there, it can pack a paunch and certainly one of the best backup power supply for sump pump out there.
Sump Pump Generator Backup – Buying Guide
When purchasing a generator, many of us make naïve mistakes. Therefore, prior to purchasing the best backup generator for sump pump, you should think about the following.
A high starting watt is required for the sump pump. In this case, you need to think about how many watts your sump pump will need to start. It is printed on the sump pump itself. A sump pump typically requires a 2000 starting watts and 600 running watts.
2. Multi Fuel or Gas generator
In order to function properly, your type needs the right fuel. There was a clear majority that sided with those who used the dual fuel generator. You can use either gasoline or propane in the area to fuel your generator. If you want the most fuel out of your generator, gasoline is your best option.
It’s fine to stick to the standard fuel type if that’s what you’re used to. That’s why you need to settle your thoughts before heading out to buy the generator.
3. Inverter or regular
Inverter generators are more expensive than regular generator. In contrast, inverter generators use less fuel and are noise. In addition, the inverter generator can be used to power sensitive appliances /devices like sump pumps, well pumps, fridge, furnace, mobile phones.
4. Ease of Use
As technology has advanced, so has the mechanics of generators. Before making a final decision, it’s important to think about the generator’s start options, display settings, and safety measures.
How to Hook up a Generator to Sump Pump?
- Step 1. Keep your generator in good order, meaning that it is dry, safe, and fueled up and ready to go.
- Step 2. If you must use a generator, place it at least 15 feet away from any windows/doors.
- Step 3. Find out how far away the backup generator is from the basement sump pump.
- Step 4. If the generator’s fuel tank is empty, fill it up.
- Step 5. Turn on the generator and, while it’s running, connect the extension cord to the sump pump.
- Step 6. Now that you know the pump is working, you need to keep the water draining and out of the building until the water level in the pump hole is low.
How to Protect Your Sump Pump?
If water gets into your basement, even a small amount can cause a lot of problems. If your basement is always damp, mold will thrive there, too.
Even though a sump pump can help you avoid flooding in the basement, regular maintenance is essential to working that it continues to function properly. There are some easy steps you can take to keep your pump running well.
To begin with, check sure the motor is working properly on your sump pump. Pull the float up. If the pump still isn’t running, start to see if the device is plugged in and receiving power.
Next, check that the length of the discharge line is sufficient to divert water far enough away from your home. If it doesn’t, you may need to have it relocated, expanded, or rebuilt by a specialist.
The sump pump should also be connected to a backup power source. This contains a backup generator. A secondary electric pump, a pump powered by a backup battery, or a hydraulic pump are all backup alternatives. Because it doesn’t need batteries or electricity, a hydraulic pump can be used even when there is a prolonged blackout.
Any time normal rainfall exceeds the capacity of a sump pump, the pump will be overwhelm. Heavy rain, or a buildup of ice on the discharge line can all cause an overflow.
Check the basin for debris and clear it out if you want to avoid an overflow. The check valve, then, has to be looked at. It prevents water from being sucked back into the pump after being released.
The weep hole, a small opening in the discharge pipe designed to prevent air lock, should be cleaned as needed with a pin. It is also important to check and clean the impeller, which does the actual work of propelling water. If it becomes blocked or broken, it will produce a funny noise or turn off the pump.
Other Things to Keep in Mind
Multiple pumps necessary for particularly large residences or buildings. A secondary sump pump can be installed if the primary one isn’t effectively preventing water from entering the basement.
The sump should not be placed directly on the ground but rather on a pedestal.
Last but not least, check sure the float switch is working. It can become caught in the moving elements of the pump or jammed against a wall in particular designs. In order to work effectively, it must be freestanding.
Generator Backup for Sump Pump – Conclusion
If your sump pump stops working because of a power outage, the resulting repairs might cost you thousands of dollars. Portable generators that are up to code with the EPA and CARB can help you power essentials like basement pumps and refrigerators.
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