Garden Hoses & Sump Pumps

garden hose

If you’re stuck wondering how to connect a garden hose to your sump pump, worry no longer – we’ve got you covered. We here at Dreamy Home found that there were quite a few commonly-asked questions floating around concerning using a garden hose in a sump pump, so, we answered them! Let’s not waste any time and just get into things.

So what’s on the docket today?

Today’s Topics Include:

This’ll be short and sweet, so let’s dive right in, shall we?

Garden Hoses & Sump Pumps 101


Let’s start with the basics – what the hell is a sump pump, and how does it work? Once we know that, we can get into the details of how (or if) to use them with garden hoses. First up – definitions.

Sump Pumps are designed to move water from one point to another. While that may seem obvious, they’re specifically used for two primary tasks:

  • Moving filtered water through a pond or fountain
  • Or removing moisture from a damp/flooding section of your home (such as the basement)

A sump (AKA a basin) is a pit, usually carved beneath a basement floor or similar area, that holds the pump. when the water gets too high in the basin, the pump’s sensors will detect the escalating water pressure and height, automatically activating to move the water elsewhere. The water generally leaves through a discharge line, called an effluent, which connects your pump to a drainage area.

While sump pumps are generally wired into place, they traditionally use electricity, a battery, or water to power themselves. A backup pump is common in most sump pumps which is almost always powered by water or a battery in the case of a power outage.

Now – onto the actual nitty-gritty.

Can You Use a Garden Hose on a Sump Pump?

This is a nice and quick section.

While you can almost always use a garden hose on a sump pump, the quality of your hose and the setup of your pump system are both going to affect how well the setup performs.

Check out our garden hose maintenance article for tips on picking the best hose for your needs.

Can You Hook Up a Garden Hose to a Water Pump?

Sump pump

As we mentioned before, it’s entirely possible to hook up a garden hose to a water pump. However, depending on your hose and the power of your pump, it’s possible that your hose isn’t the best choice. While it’ll make for a great short-term/stopgap measure, it’s not your long-term solution.

As with all things in your home, it’s always best to avoid cutting corners – so if you have to, hook a valve onto your hose and set it up, but don’t accept that as success. Find the proper tubing to securely connect your pump. Water damage is no fun and incredibly expensive to fix – so don’t risk a cheap garden hose springing a leak.

How Do You Connect a Garden Hose to a Sump Pump?

If you need a short-term solution to a sump pump’s missing hose, your garden hose is a great quick answer. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A garden hose (measure it to ensure it’s not too short or too long)
  • Hack saw
  • Pipe wrench
  • Cool water and a rag (for cleaning)
  • Threaded hose adaptor
    • Measure your sump pump outlet port and your hose – find an adaptor that fits both ends.
  • Power drill
  • Zip ties

Now – let’s get you installing your pump and hose.


Backup sump pump

Here’s how to install a garden hose to a sump pump:

  1. If you’re installing a new sump pump, ignore this first step and skip to step 2. This is for those adding the hose to a pre-existing pump:
    1. Use your hacksaw to cut through the drain pipe sitting directly above the basin.
    2. Remove the pump from the basin (cutting the pipe freed it)
    3. Remove your drain pipe from the outlet port, this will likely require your pipe wrench.
    4. Check the inside of your pump and clean out any refuse or buildup with your water and rag.
    5. Discard the old drain.
  2. Attach your new threaded adaptor to the outlet port of the sump pump.
    1. It’s very likely that the connector for your hose and/or pump is made from plastic. Be careful to tighten it without cracking the housing. If you crack it, replace the damaged part and try again (but gently this time).
  3. Connect your garden hose to the sump pump adaptor on the outlet port.
  4. Carefully and gently lower your pump back into the basin and ensure it’s properly levelled.
  5. Route your hose to where you need it.
    1. Often the hose will coil up awkwardly – if it’s too long, use the zip ties we mentioned earlier to tie it down and keep it still as water flows through.
  6. Bring your hose to ground level and either drill a new hole or use a pre-existing one (if you have it).
  7. Finish connecting your hose to the other end, and you’re all done!


All in all, the process of connecting a garden hose to a sump pump is surprisingly simple. It’ll take a bit of elbow grease and a few tools, but it’s generally pretty simple to get solved! Just remember that this isn’t a permanent solution, but rather designed to give you time to get the permanent parts. And, as always – remember grandpa’s advice – measure twice, cut once.