Simple DC Sump Pump




Introduction: Simple DC Sump Pump

About: I have been building since I was 4 and growing plants since I was 5.

Have you ever needed to pump a small amount of water from one place or another? What about one that can go underwater? This project is exactly that! It is simple, requires almost no soldering skill, is made of mostly recycled maerials, and doesn't have alot of electronics in it! Try it and you will see.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

juice carton cap
flimsey carton
stiff carton
motor with a gear (more voltage the better)
two feet of heavely insulated wire
DC adapter or battery that voltage matches the motor
lengh of tubing or straws
hot glue
heat shrink tubes (optional)
drill bits
soldering iron
wire cutters/stripers
knife and sissors

Step 2: Warning and Saftey

When using this project be sure to pay VERY close attention to the directions during building and assembly instructions. If not followed correctly you may short-circut the motor or possibly harm you or something else. I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY HARM DONE IN THIS PROJECT. It is highly recomended by me to wear rubber gloves while running the first few tests. And also, if you are going to act stupid with the water and electricity........... SNAP OUT OF IT  OR DO SOMETHING ELSE!!!!!!!!!!!! Don't end up like the guy with the wires :)

Step 3: Basic Cutting

Out of the flimsey carton, cut a square that is bigger than tne open end of the cap. Place it aside and cut out a piece of stiff plastic. Iused a knife to cut out larger rough shapes and then trimmed them to look more like real shapes. The stiff plastic piece can be any shape. make sure it is a large piece.

Step 4: Water Blade

If your motor has a gear, carefully slide it out. cut two small rectangles out of the stiff plastic. Hot glue them on to the gear. Make sure the rectangles are bigger than your cap. Try to keep them as straight as possible. Make sure the gear can fit back onto the motor shaft.

Step 5: Body Construction

Pick up your cap and look inside. Some have a plastic ring made into the bottom. VERY carefully drill this out. At the end you may have a few small holes going through it. carefully cover them with hot glue and make sure there is no holes or glue inside. in the center. trill a hole for the motor axel. Try to keep it so it is snug against the axel. Also make sure the axel can spin. Using a drill bit,drill a hole big enough so the tube or straw can fit through.

Step 6: Water Proofing the Motor

Study your motor. Any hole besides the axel hole needs to be covered. Using some tacky hot glue cover up all these holes. Once applied press down on the glue.

Step 7: Trimming the Blade

Place the blade on top of the cap so the axle hole lines up with the axle. Mark where the cap walls end on the blade and pick it up. cut next to the line inward twords the motor so the gear can fit in without the blade scraping against the cap wall.

Step 8: Gluing the Motor Down

Press the motor against the back of the cap until it is as close as you can get it. Take the hot glue and glue around the motor and hold until it dries. Then put a second layer on so no holes remain.

Step 9: Wires

Plug in your power source and make sure the wires don't touch. Match positve and negitve on the motor. Once it is running tape one lead so they won't touch. If the blade spins your doing good. Unplug the motor and take off the tape, solder the ends together and hot glue over them. You can also put shrink tubes on them and glue. You can also add on the wire asked for in the directions.

Step 10: Assembly

Drill a hole in the center of the flimsey plastic. Make sure the pipe can fit in it. Then plug in the motor and place the plastic square on top. Glue it down so the blade doesn't hit it to much. Hold until dry. If its still spinning you did it!!!

Step 11: Tubing

Cut one very tiny piece of tubing or piping and place it on the plastic hole in the flimsey plastic. Keep the motor running and glue down the pipe so it doesn't hit the blade. This must be on the outside. Then cut a larger piece of tubing and do the same on the side of the cap.

Step 12: Use

Place in water so the bottom is underwater. Keep the longer tube above water and plug it in. Depending on the motor strengh water will come out one way or another. Also make sure the pump was water already in it. Any questions on troubleshooting write a comment below.

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    11 Discussions


    It would help if there were actual pictures of the real thing, it's hard to follow just rough drawings. But thanks for sharing !


    6 years ago on Step 12

    Sealant is an excellent idea!! After noticing many leaks, I actually epoxied the whole assembly (not fun at all) and that worked well too. And also, how much power do you get out of your motor? The one I used in this instructable barely works.


    6 years ago on Step 12

    I have found with hot glue used as a water sealant for some projects it seems to develop small leaks, lucky enough mine was not on a electronic device... I found a large tube of fish tank sealant on ebay for cheap around £3 GBP that i now use, it will help keep a better seal and also if the motor starts to generate heat the glue will melt, the sealant will not, overall a nice instructable will be making one of these :D

    Yes, you shouldn't. For experimental reasons, I plugged them temporarily with hot glue to see if it had any effects on performance, for this small motor it has little effect because the surrounding water absorbs the heat from the motor. But, am currently making a new instructable using a 12v motor. And i am aware that 5v will not shock me, but thank you for the tip. With the 12v motor, i made a waterproof enclosure with a straw running over the vent slots. (It sounds silly but it works pretty well) And if you can tell me, how well does tthe pump work when you built it, mine works well but it's slow. Thanks


    You shouldn't cover the motor's ventilation holes, otherwise it will overheat. Just let it catch water in order to cool down. Don't worry, at 5v you won't get shocked if you touch the water. I have built one some time ago which's the motor is submerged in water and it works fine.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Did u get your motor out of a cd player thats where i got mine


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, but also remember the bigger the motor, the more power/suction your pump has. But a bigger motor requires more power

    Lectric Wizard
    Lectric Wizard

    8 years ago on Step 12

    You need to add pictures or drawings of the inside so we can follow what you are saying. Sounds like a great idea just needs clarity.