A Triumph for Home Automation
Last night, er… this morning, I was rudely awoken by my Google Home. But, I’m glad I was because one of our sump pumps had failed and there was water in the basement. What could have easily been a massive mess, was just a bit of water around the pit, and couple inconvenient hours as I pulled the pump out of the pit and replaced it with a “hot spare” that I kept just in case something like this happened.
While the timing was very unforgiving (why do sump pumps always fail at night?), it was a fantastic validation of our home automation setup. The brains of the system is a Hubitat hub + a couple HomeSeer HS FS100 sensors, with the Hubitat Safety Monitor tying it all together so that if there is a water event, we get the wake-up message from the Google Homes.
The water detectors are great but if your power goes out during a storm and you don’t have a generator you could still end up with a flooded basement. You should seriously consider getting a battery backup sump pump system to supplement your regular sump pump. It’s a separate pump that fits inside the sump well that only kicks in if the main pump fails to turn on. Since most power failures occur during a storm it’s a worthwhile investment. Of course, just like a UPS for your computer, the system will only operate for as long as the battery lasts, but it should buy you enough time to work out an alternative power source, such as connecting a generator to the main pump.
We have a whole house NG generator I installed exactly for that reason.