Submersible Pumps

A submersible pump is a pump that is able to be placed underwater and still carry out its intended purpose. Some pumps may be designed to work while being fully submerged, whereas others may be submerged or placed in a dry area. It is important to understand what type of pump you are dealing with in order that no damage is incurred when it is being used.

Submersible pump types include sump pumps and sewage pumps. These are the types with which most residential users will be most familiar. However, the submersible pump can be used in a number of other applications as well such as well pumps, fountain pumps and borehole pumps.

A sump pump keeps the space beneath your basement, and your basement itself, from flooding during excessive storms. The sump is a small reservoir under your basement that is meant to fill when groundwater levels rise, instead of letting the water seep into the basement and cause damage. Using a sump pump to move that water forces it up to ground level far enough away from your house to properly drain.

Groundwater is potable water which is stored underground. It can be confined, which means that a deposit of water is surrounded by nonpermeable rock, or unconfined, in which case it is surrounded by permeable rock, gravel, soil, and other materials. Around 20% of the world’s freshwater is groundwater, and groundwater makes up a significant portion of the potable water consumed worldwide, with up to 50% of some populations relying on groundwater for drinking, bathing, industrial production, and a variety of other tasks.


The advantages of a submersible pump are numerous. First, it has the advantage of being self-primed because the substance it is pumping, usually water, is right there at the pump itself. Further, the submersible pump may actually have to do less work than a standard pump simply because it is closer to the liquid being pumped.There are some disadvantages to submersible pumps as well. There is the chance the pump will become corroded and lose its seals, thus allowing liquid to penetrate into the motor housing and causing substantial damage to the unit. Also, because these pumps are under water a good portion of their lives, accessing the pump for repairs may be difficult.

In home uses, most of these problems are somewhat diminished. A submersible pump in a home may not be submerged most of the time. If it is, it may not be completely submerged. Even so, the pump should still be easily accessed.When choosing a submersible pump for home use, many are suited for specific tasks. Some may be better able to handle solids and would therefore make good sewage pumps. Other standard sump pumps may be simply suited for removing water from unwanted areas, such as flooded basements.