For the homeowner that has a sump pump or, sewage ejector pump system in the basement the sounds of silence have never been possible until recently. Each cycle of the pump had a resounding thump of the discharge pipe when the pump shut off and the check valve closed. The height of the discharge pipe or “Pump Head Pressure” determined the volume of the thump. There was no way of getting around the fact that a 1 ½” or 2″ column of water pumped 10’ up vertically when the pump shuts off comes crashing down and slams the check valve closed with a thump. Using flexible connectors and firmly securing the piping could help to some degree but could never fully eliminate the noise.
Recently however a number of companies have developed new check valves for use on both sump pumps and sewage ejector pumps that are every quiet compared to the old style check valve. The new valves through the use of springs and or, magnets, and the design of the valves have a controlled rate of closing that is slower and controls the momentum of the water column against the check valve eliminating the noise.
The new valves are manufactured and marketed under a variety of names such as “Silent Check Valve”, “Quiet Check Valve”, and “Smart Check Valve” by several different companies such and A.Y. McDonald Mfg. Co. and PASCO Specialty & Mfg. Inc. The valves come in models for sump pumps, sewage pumps, with models for connection via flexible rubber couplings, unions, slip fit, and solvent welding. Some even come with a shut off valve above the check valve, a valve above the check valve is a code requirement on sewage ejectors to aid in the replacement of the check valves. Nothing lasts forever and provisions for replacement of the check valve are needed. There are even clear models that you can see through and see the liquid being pumped.
Next time you replace your sump pump or, sewage ejector pump check valve or, if you can’t wait until then ask your plumbing supply house to provide you with the sounds of silence.