Why Is Sump Pump Running Without Rain And How To Fix It?

Does your sump pump often automatically run even though there is no rain in the sky? If yes, something is wrong. 

A sump pump is supposed only to get activated when there is a rising water level. So, why is the sump pump running without rain?

Generally, you can run the machine for 2-3 days after heavy rain. But if it still continuously runs even after several days, several reasons can be responsible and you need to address them quickly. 

Read this to learn those reasons and how to solve them.

 What Causes A Sump Pump To Run Without Rain?

running sump pump

Something might happen to the machine if there is scorching sunlight outside, but your sump pump is running. Check out these common reasons that might be the main culprit.

  • Raised Ground Water

One of the most typical causes could be raising the groundwater level behind your continuous run of the sump pump.

Apart from rains, different sources such as broken pipes closed construction areas, and nearby lakes or rivers can be major groundwater sources.

You can’t identify the source of the water from above ground. However, a significant amount of water may pile up at the lowest part of your house, which is the main reason behind a continuous run of the sump pump.

  • Snow Melting

Does your current location have a snowstorm 1-2 days ago? If the temperature suddenly increases, this may lead to melting issues for the accumulated snow.

When this snow transforms into water, it will seep inside the ground. Some water will be consumed by plants, while others will get inside the soil.

If any a severe snowstorm with high winds in our current location, your sump pump may start running automatically.

  • Increment in Water Table

Each of our locations has a specific water table, which may occasionally change for different reasons. It can be natural or man-made.

As for natural reasons, heavy rainfall or change in river flow direction can cause the sump pump to run. However, a new construction project can be a man-made reason for the machine to run,

  • Defective Float Switch
running sump pump without rain

Have you checked the float switch? If it is damaged, this may cause the sump pump to run continuously.

This knob is supposed to adjust when the water level goes upward and downward.

Since the switch is defective, it fails to understand the pump system. 

The pump system will continuously run when the float switch is stuck in a particular water level.

  • Lack of Water Draining 

Have you noticed whether the pump is draining water properly? Check out the pit area where the water drains.

If your pump is not draining water properly, the sump pump may continue running. It can happen for several electrical and mechanical reasons.

Add some extra water to increase the float switch level. If your pump continues operating, but no water comes down, the drain or pump system issues are related.

  • Blocked Drain line

When your drain line becomes blocked, a mighty pump will fail to drain the water through the basin. It is a good rule of thumb to clear the drain lines if the pump system is working smoothly.

Hair, debris, dirt, and other tiny substances may get stuck in the drain opening. This will prevent the water from smoothly getting inside the drain. Thus, water will pile up in the basin area.

Not dealing with the problem on time can lead to overheating or malfunctioning issues. In many situations, you may notice smoking or steaming issues.

After a certain time, the sump pit will be overflow with water due to the water sticking issues in the drain line. A flood will occur in the basement area.

  • Issues With The Check Valve

Most household owners install a check valve in the discharge line to prevent excessive water from getting inside the pump.

However, a broken check valve may fail to stop the water from flowing back to the pump, causing the pump to release the same water repeatedly. 

How To Fix A Sump Pump That Runs Without Rain?

fixing constantly running sump pump

You are wondering how to fix your sump pump that runs without rain? Here are some common solutions you can apply to deal with this problem.

  1. Replacing the Float Switch

Since float switch is one of the most common factors that cause this problem, you should handle it first. Check out these steps if you wonder how to replace a float switch for a sump pump.

  • At first, need to allow your sump pump to drain all the water from your basin.
  • Then, disconnect it from the electrical source.
  • Find out the ideal location of the float switch by reading out the instruction manual.
  • Before opening your float switch housing, you want to take off the float switch. It is located in the pump unit.
  • Now, remove screws from the float switch. This will lead to great visibility of the power switch.
  • After taking off the damaged float switch, install the new switch.
  • Make sure to use waterproof glue for better installation and let it dry properly before finally closing the switchboard.
  • Once properly dried, you can tighten the screws and seal the area.

If the float switch is okay and fixed, the next step is to fix the check valve.

  1. Replacing the Check Valve

If the float switch doesn’t have any problem, you should inspect the check valve. When it is damaged, follow these steps to install it.

  • At first want to buy all the important parts such as PVC couplings and nuts, PVC cement, sandpaper, etc., to replace the valve successfully.
  • Check out the damaged old check valve position since you have to install the new valve at its exact location.
  • Now, measure a particular distance from one coupling to another.
  • Cut the pipe according to measurement using a hacksaw or pipe cutter. Avoid cutting too much or too little.
  • After cutting the pipe accordingly, take off the outdated valve and set up the new one.
  • Now, switch on the pump to check out if it is functioning correctly or not.

After that, we have two more steps to complete!

  1. Cleaning the Drain Line

If your drain line is blocked, consider properly cleaning the drain line using a drain cleaner. As a homemade solution, you can use baking soda and salt to remove the clogging issues from the drain line.

  1. Replacing the Sump Pump

Do your sump pump becomes too old? Pluming items are supposed to have a replacement after a certain time.

They won’t show reliable performance when they become too old. A sump pump is more likely weary issues if you have heavily used it for several years.

Generally, a Sump Pump lasts around 7-10 years. Get a new one if your sump pump has already passed this period and is not working correctly.

Make sure you take a professional plumber to help install a new sump pump because there might be some technical issue, which you may don’t know.

Lastly, I want you to watch this video. It explains the troubleshooting part very easily!


I just hope you know why is the sump pump running without rain now. A sump pump may run unnecessarily if its internal or corresponding parts have any issues. Delaying to solve the problem may lead to additional problems.

Ensure you check all the possible parts we have mentioned to find the root causes. Don’t forget to apply the solutions we have mentioned. 

If you are still struggling to fix the issue, hire a professional to handle the issues.

Ralph Wade

Hey...Ralph is here! So, did you find this article useful? If so, please leave a comment and let me know. If not, please tell me how I can improve this article. Your feedback is always appreciated. Take love :)

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