Logo of Capstone

4 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Sump Pump: Cast Iron vs Plastic

Although cast iron pumps tend to be more expensive than their plastic counterparts, both of these options have various benefits that might be useful in your particular situation.

 Let’s see how these sump pumps stack up against each other.

Iron cast sump pump

Cast iron sump pump

Plastic sump pump

Plastic sump pump

Durability: Cast Iron vs Plastic Sump Pumps

Although cast iron pumps tend to be more expensive than their plastic counterparts, they make up for it in longevity and durability. Let’s see how these sump pumps stack up against each other.

Cast Iron Sump Pumps

Cast Iron Pumps come with corrosion protection, meaning that you rarely ever have to worry about your pump corroding or deteriorating over time. 

However, this only applies if the water is clean. Rust will not only cause the pump to corrode, but it may also reduce its lifespan by a significant amount. For this reason, you should clean your lines once every year or so, especially if you have very hard water in your area.

In addition to their long life expectancy, cast iron pumps are powerful and sturdy. They can withstand extreme levels of pressure and can extract water at impressive speed.

Plastic Sump Pumps

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about plastic pumps. While they are cheaper than cast iron ones, to begin with (and that’s enough for many people), they break down much faster. 

Even worse, once a plastic pump has broken down, you won’t be able to repair it. If you have a plastic pump, it’s worth putting away some money for a new one.

Plastic pumps tend to last only a few years at best. They aren’t strong enough for dirty water, which will often cause the pump to malfunction. Even worse, if you don’t catch this problem in time (i.e., within a few months), it may lead to irreversible damage that makes the pump unusable.

Two plastic sump pumps

Life Expectancy: Cast Iron vs Plastic Sump Pumps

Plastic can last for a long time if there’s no other external factor to damage it. But sump pumps are not placed exactly in the safest place around your home. Let’s see where cast iron sump pumps vs plastic sump pumps stand in terms of life expectancy.

Cast Iron Sump Pumps

As we mentioned above, cast iron pumps are known for their durability and long lifespan. For this reason, they are so popular among homeowners, especially those who have a lot of water around their foundations.

However, the truth is that there’s more to these pumps than just lifespan and durability. If you’re going to buy a cast iron pump, it pays off to choose a quality one from a reputable company, like us. 

A good cast iron pump will last you 15 to 20 years with little to no maintenance required in between. On the other hand, a poor quality one may not even last you two years – and that’s if you’re lucky.

Plastic Sump Pumps

As we’ve said above, plastic pumps are not built to last. 

Even the best ones will only last you up to five years, which improves their lower quality counterparts. However, it still leaves a lot to be desired when compared with cast iron pumps.

Generally speaking, plastic pumps should no longer be used after ten years since they are more prone to damage.

Other Aspects Worth Noting

There are other aspects worth noting about both types of sump pumps.

Water Capacity and Quality

Noise Level

Maintenance & Longevity:

Steel sump pump with pipes

So, Which Sump Pump Is Better?

It’s clear that cast iron sump pumps are simply much more efficient than plastic ones. Plastic is notorious for not being efficient, it break fast, it looks ugly, and it damages the environment.

If you want a quality sump pump that’ll save you more money in the long run, cast iron pumps are much better. They’re more reliable, durable, and require less maintenance.

If you’re ready to replace your existing sump pump, or you want more information about which brand is better, give us a call at (202) 389-9121 or request a quote for your project, and we’ll reach back as soon as possible!