When we make house calls to replace sump pumps, one of the options we always recommend is that of a replacement sump pump with a battery backup system. It’s not strictly necessary for a home, but we’ve seen enough flooded basements with working sump pumps that stopped working during power outages to know what a difference it can make. A combination sump pump (a primary AC-powered unit a DC-powered backup unit) can save you tens of thousands of dollars in basement flood repair costs, particularly if you have a finished basement or valuables stored in an area dependent on your sump pump.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that when clients ask us whether or not we think the extra $200-odd dollars for a backup system is worth it, our answer is unequivocally yes. As a result, today we’re going to take a look at one of our favorite combination sump pump systems, the Wayne WSS30V Pre-Assembled Combination Sump Pump System. It’s essentially the pump and battery backup version of the Wayne CDU800, and at under $400, it’s the single best sump pump system on the market at that price. Our full review is below, but if you’re wondering whether it’s worth it, yes it is, we recommend it, and you can buy it here.
Key Features of the Wayne WSS30V Sump Pump (60 Second Summary)
The Wayne WSS30V is a pre-assembled primary and battery backup combination submersible sump pump system. The main sump pump is AC-powered and is the CDU800; the backup is DC-powered and is the ESP25. The main pump features a 1/2 horsepower motor while the backup features a 12 volt motor. The primary pump features a 4,200 gallon per hour maximum water flow rate (3,300 GPH in the backup), and a 5 year limited warranty . It’s just under 14″ tall, 14.4″ wide, and just under 14″ deep with a maximum pumping height of 22 feet and a switch-on/switch-off height of 4″ and 9″ respectively. The aforementioned pump switch is vertical.
The WSS30V draws 10 amps and is equipped with a battery backup, although the battery isn’t included; you’ll need a 12 volt deep cycle battery with either 40 amp hours or 75 amp hours. It weighs 24 pounds, and has a 9 foot-long power cord. Although the main discharge flow can reach 4,200 gallons per hour at 0 feet, it drops to 3,150 gallons per hour at 10 feet, 2,100 gallons per hour at 15 feet, and 500 gallons per hour at 20 feet. The backup discharge flow is 3,300 GPH at 0 feet, 2,300 GPH at 10 feet, 1,500 GPH at 15 feet, and is inoperative at 20 feet.
The working temperature spans 33-120 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s self-priming and housed in cast iron and stainless steel, and the sump pump outlet diameter is 1-1/2″ FPT. It’s designed to be used with sump pits (sump basins) at least 15 inches in diameter.
How Does the Wayne WSS30V Compare to the CDU800 Sump Pump?
As noted above, we reviewed the CDU800 recently, and the main difference between the WSS30V and the CDU800 is the fact that an additional 12 volt back-up pump (the ESP25) is attached to the CDU800 (with a battery you need to supply) that allows the combination sump pump system to run even if AC power is cut. You need a significantly larger sump pit diameter (15 inches vs 11 inches) to fit the sump pump. The warranty is increased from 3 years to 5 years, the power cord is lengthened from 8 feet to 9 feet, and the weight and dimensions of the combination sump pump also increase.
Overall, we had a seamless experience installing the WSS30V (keeping in mind, of course, that we do this for a living). Unlike Wayne’s typical AC pumps, the WSS30V is pre-assembled and preset to speed up the installation process; they describe it as drop-in, which is rather close to the truth. Check valves are included in the base of both pumps (the main AC and the backup DC unit), which means all you need to do is attach a battery, plug in the AC unit, and attach a main discharge pipe. The manual that comes with the unit isn’t actually written for the WSS30V, which means that a lot of what you read in it won’t apply to the WSS30V (for example, the fact that you won’t need to install the check valves and that you can simply plug and play the unit).
Once again, Wayne doesn’t disappoint with functionality or with noise management; despite having a pair of pumps connected to each other, the WSS30V is still one of the quietest sump pumps currently on the market. It makes sense when you consider that only one pump should ever be working at a time (the main pump under normal conditions and the DC pump during a loss of AC power); for most people, the sump pump will be effectively inaudible unless you’re right next to it, and even then, you’ll barely notice it’s on. The backup pump is just as quiet.
Overall, the 1/2 horsepower in the main unit is strong enough to keep most basements bone-dry and is sufficient for most tasks. We’ve seen this design going strong after 4 years, and we expect most buyers to get at least a decade out of this pump system without significant problems in the main or backup pumps (besides replacing the battery, which will need to be done every few years for optimal performance).
Troubleshooting and Installation Tips to Get Your Wayne WSS30V Working Sooner
Keep in mind that in order to have an effective backup system, you need to attach a 12 volt deep cycle battery to the sump pumps; otherwise, you’ll basically just have the CDU800, which, of course, only works as long as you have AC power. We recommend (and Wayne instructs) you stick with either a 40 or 75 amp battery; if you try to use a larger battery, you might not get it to fit in the battery box. You need a 27-frame sized battery.
Remember that the battery pump still needs support when handling the unit; if you only pick up the unit by the AC pump’s handle, you could break the flexible pipe fitting that connects it to the DC pump, leaving you with a broken connection at best and a damaged pump and battery at worst that you’ll need to replace.
If you have no plumbing experience, you might need an hour or two to install the system; the primary issue most people seem to have is fitting the unit into sump pits with 90 degree elbows. Your particular installation setup will of course depend on how your sump basin and piping is setup. Keep in mind that you’ll need at least a sump basin at least 15 inches wide to get the combination pump in.
Something else to keep in mind is that no battery terminals are connected to the unit; if you’ve got a marine or car battery you’d like to use, you’ll need a battery terminal set.
Wayne WSS30V Sump Pump’s Pros, Cons, and Value Comparison
In conclusion, we’d be hard pressed to recommend another sump pump to any family without a battery backup. The peace of mind you can buy for only a couple hundred extra dollars is well worth the tens of thousands you can save the first time you lose power during a period of heavy rain. The WSS30V works well, is dead simple to install, comes with a nice long warranty, and is effective at keeping basements bone dry. We can’t think of a better sump pump system for under $400.
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