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Sump pump worries

Hello people,

My wife and I bought a 2001 house last year (near Ann Arbor, Michigan), and before that we have always lived in townhouses or apartments -no basements-.

Well, the new house has a basement and a sump pump near one of the corners. I have been used to, and slightly worried of, hearing the sump pump working every 30 to 60 minutes. That was until we had a heavy storm last week, and I could hear the sump pump running every 66 seconds!!! Now I'm kind of panicked.

Our house is located at the same level as the neighbors', and each downspout finishes at a concrete splashblock (~3ft long). The ground is sloped away of the house, so I don't understand how this much water can flow into the sump pump pit.

The only weird thing I can see is the discharge of the sump pump. The pipe coming out of the house turns down and goes into the ground about 1ft away from the foundation, and has a "Y" with a side discharge. The sump pump pit has been sealed by the previous owner (or the radon mitigation people) and I have been wary of opening it to test the pump discharge.

In any case, I'm trying to decide what would be the best course of action. What should I be concentrating on first?

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