Last Updated: May 1, 2023 @ 4:24 pm.

What is the best sump pump battery backup? We asked our parent readers who have sump pumps for their real world experiences. Then we interviewed two plumbers with a combined 22 years of experience about their recommendations. Which is easiest to install? Best battery if you already have a pump? Here are the ones that came out on top.

FYI: We've been reviewing and rating products for the home and families since 1994. We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Our work is 100% reader-supported!


Finding the Best Backup System for a Sump Pump: Our Tips & Advice

Let’s talk sump pumps.

If you are the proud homeowner of a basement like the one pictured above, you may not notice or pay much attention to the sump pump over in the corner. But having that pump working 24/7 may be the difference between a wet or dry basement.

So here’s a quick sump pump 101—and why a battery backup may be a smart solution if you live in an area prone to power outages.

Sump Pump 101

Sump pumps are designed to move water out of a catch basin. If you have a perimeter drain around your house, the water may collect in this basin. (Some basements also have seepage from below, where water is also collected).

Sump pumps typically come with a float switch—when the water rises to a certain level in the basin, the switch turns on the pump.

The big issue with sump pumps is whether they are designed to move water up and out (referred to as lift—or in feet to lift, like 10 foot lift) or just out (zero lift). 

What happens if the power goes out?

As you might imagine, sump pumps are designed to work on your standard house power. But if the power goes out, the water still needs to be removed, right? In that case, a battery back-up system can keep your pump working. And that can be the difference between a dry or flooded basement.

How much water do you need to move?

Sump pumps are rated by the number of gallons they remove per hour (gph). The same goes for backup sump pump systems—so the first order of business is determining the size of the system. Some systems can remove 1000 gph; others are rated to 5000 gph.

Backup Systems 101

Most backup systems incorporate a transfer switch (aka, a power inverter) that automatically detects a power outage and safely switches the pump to battery power. That way you don’t have to be there to switch over the unit.

We should note that many “sump pump battery backup systems” don’t include the actually battery to power the system. This is a separate purchase (we will link to the batteries below).

A few of these systems include a sump pump itself, while others are just the battery backup and transfer switch (that is, no pump). We know, it can be confusing. See below for more details on the best bets.

After spending several hours researching sump pump battery backups (including interviewing our parent readers with real-world experience with these systems), here are the ones we recommend. best sump pump battery backup

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Best For Zero Lift

Easy to install
Although the battery is a separate purchase, this pump and control panel are super easy to use—love the detailed directions.
$159.17

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Best For Zero Lift Homes: Basement Watchdog BWE 1000 Gallons

As we discussed earlier, there are two basic situations where you have a sump pump removing water: zero-lift and non-zero lift. 

Zero lift pumps are just designed to move water horizontally out to a drain. That is, the pump does not need to first move water UP and then OUT.

For this use, we liked Basement Watchdog’s BWE 1000 model. This one came recommended by several readers for its easy use and installation. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Affordable.

• Removes 1000 to 2000 gallons per hour.

• Auto charger for battery.

• Easy to install.

• Good directions with over 90 (!) pictures.

• Visual and audible alarms.

What Needs Work

• Doesn’t include battery. For this unit, we recommend the brand’s battery here.

• Pump is their entry level model. GPH drops dramatically if you need lift—that is why we recommend it for zero lift situations.

• Cable could be longer for install. best sump pump battery backup

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Best Battery System

Great if you already have pump
The star feature here is the simple control switch than seamlessly moves between main and backup power. Also nice: available as a bundle with battery if you prefer.

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Best Battery System: PumpSpy 2000W Primary Sump Pump Backup Power System

If you already have a sump pump and just need the battery and control system, this would be our choice: PumpSpy 2000 can’t only run one pump . . . it can handle two. A plumber we interviewed for this article recommended this model, which is simple to install—and yes, there is 2000 watts of power output.

We should point out that this backup power system is an inverter—it converts power from a battery and outputs clean wattage to run a pump. The inverter itself must be connected to external batteries (not included) to remain fully charged—those external batteries keep the main unit fully charged (it has a smart cooling feature to keep from overheating). Good news: this system is also available bundled with a battery if you want to use PumpSpy’s own battery.

What We Liked

 Easy to install—just plug and play.

• Piece of mind.

• Automatically switches over to battery power when main power goes out.

• 5 volt USB port is great for pump float switches that work on USB power.

What Needs Work

• Must connect to external batteries to maintain charge on main unit—you can buy both as a bundle at this link.

• Longer cables would be helpful. The maker says to install the unit three feet above the floor—but the cables are only 2 feet long!

• Posts on battery connector are short, so thicker lug nuts won’t work without getting rid of the washer. best sump pump battery backup

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Best Heavy Duty

Assembled in the USA
The robust pump here impressed us with its capacity—and the all-in-one set up makes it quick to install.
$514.34

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Best Heavy Duty: WAYNE – ½ HP Sump Pump with Integrated Vertical Float Switch and 12 Volt Battery Back Up

If you need to move water both up and out of your house, you need a more robust pump and backup system—this model by Wayne is our pick. In our research, this model came recommended both by readers and plumbers for its overall reliability and quality.

Yes, this unit includes the pump, float switch AND the power inverter—it is an all-in-one solution . . . with the exception of the external battery (which can be bought from the same brand here).

What We Liked

• Includes pump, integrated float switch—all are pre-assembled.

• Install takes about 15 minutes.

• Great for 15″ catch basin.

• Quality touches like cast iron construction.

• Assembled in the USA.

• Robust pump can handle 5100 gph and rid up to 10,000 gallons of water on single charge—that is impressive.

What Needs Work

• Battery not included—we recommend this model by the same maker. best sump pump battery backup

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Best WiFi Monitoring

Reliable system
Yes, this pump will send you a text notification in case the backup system kicks in (WiFi module is separate purchase). We like the easy install.
$245.00

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Best WiFi Monitoring: THE BASEMENT WATCHDOG Model BWSP

This model is similar to the Basement Watchdog model we recommended earlier in this article, but with two enhancements: first, the pump here is beefier, with 2500 gallons per hour (gph) at zero feet and 1730 gph at 10 feet of lift. Second, this model has the ability to link to Basement Watchdog’s WiFi module that can send alerts to your phone via the app, text or email—and it can tie into your home security system. 

Two caveats: that WiFi module is a separate purchase. And like the other Basement Watchdog products, the battery is a separate purchase

What We Liked

• Good brand reputation—this system has excellent reliability.

• Installation is simple.

• Control panel with warning lights is simple to use.

• Sensor monitors battery fluid levels.

• Includes float switch.

What Needs Work

WiFi module is extra purchase.

Battery is extra purchase. best sump pump battery backup

About the Authors

Denise & Alan Fields are consumer advocates and best-selling authors. The Fields have authored 12 books with three million copies in print, including the best-selling guide to baby gear, Baby Bargains.

The Fields have been featured and quoted in the New York TimesWall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times.

As consumer products experts, the Fields have been guests on the NBC Today Show, Good Morning America and ABC’s 20/20.

best sump pump battery backup

How We Pick Products To Recommend

We often turn to our readers (3 million strong!) to find products to recommend. We ask our parent readers for their favorites and consider their real-world experiences in our recommendations.

When we test a product, we always purchase it with our own monies. We do not take free samples, as we believe that compromises our independence.

We also fact check manufacturer information with our own measurements. If a maker claims a product weighs X pounds, we will weigh it to make sure. If the battery life is supposed to be six hours, we will see how it stands up in the real world.

In some cases, we will do interviews with experts in the field to get additional feedback on products.

To get hands-on time with products, we regularly meet one-on-one with gear companies and even tour manufacturing facilities. (When we do this, we pay our own travel expenses).

best sump pump battery backup

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability.

We make our living from affiliate commissions, but we always recommend what we think are the best bets for our readers (not the ones that are the most expensive). We are always looking for products that offer the best bang for the buck.

Our independence is a key reason why we have been doing this so long. As we mentioned above, when we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!

best sump pump battery backup

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