Rated 3.8 out of 5 by 32
Rated 1.0 out of 5.0 by Scott Not all that's it's cracked up to be...
I've owned this thing for a few years, and thought all was well. I've checked it from time to time, and it always says everything is fine. While the pump works fine, and I do catch the pump being tested from time to time, I found the maintenance of the battery is horrible.
Evidently, it must overcharge the battery, as all through the water level indicator showed good, I decided to check anyway, and found the battery 1/2 gallon low. Ergh! I call and the tech says the water level indicators are notoriously unreliable so you have to check the batteries every 3 months. Well, how about fixing the sensor so it actually works right? Or, remove the feature so people don't rely on it.
So I fill up the battery, charge them over night with my automotive charger, and let it rest a bit and find it's only holding around 12.2v. Great, a ruined battery. So, before I go to buy a new one, I hook up back up just to have something in the interim, and find that the system is indicating 12.2v is 100% !!! What? 12.2v fully charged is less than 25% capacity bordering on junk!
Wow, it's pretty clear the charging and maintenance portion of this unit is garbage. I'd suggest that you do NOT rely on the battery level sensor and check it manually - and frequently. Then I'm going to find a way to disable the charging function and just use a battery tender so I'm sure they are being properly charged.
You know, the thing that really gets me is, you spend top dollar because you want the piece of mind that your finished basement is protected. It's really irritating when you find out that your investment is just a mirage, as although it's showing all's well, the reality is, if I had had a long outage, this thing probably would have only lasted a few minutes due to improperly maintaining and ruining the battery.
IMHO, you are much better off just getting a manual switched system, and use a battery tender as all of the fancy features of this expensive unit don't work correctly once you peel back the flimsy veneer. Better yet, use the ~$600 you'd spend on this system with the required battery and tax, and use that as a down payment on a NG backup generator that will offer real protection. When you factor in burning through $150 batteries every couple of years, its a no brainer.
I've attached a photo of the control panel showing all's well, and the battery charge level is 100%, while the next photo shows the connected battery only has 12.20 Volts. Junk, Imho.
December 29, 2014
Rated 1.0 out of 5.0 by unhappy Unit quit working after 1 year and manufacturer refused to warranty it.
I spent over $500 for the big dog system and the company would not warranty it because it was coming up as an older serial number. Apparently you need to check the number of the unit you buy. Bad customer service.
January 19, 2016
Rated 1.0 out of 5.0 by Unhappy Junk !!!!
Purchased a combo unit 4 years ago only to have the main pump Rot out. I'm talking HUGE holes in the sides. Home Depot replaced it, only to have the exact same thing happen. Never,ever again will I spend over $500 on this complete piece of junk. Spend your time and money on a better product.
October 31, 2015
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Randychicagoil A must have for basements with sump pits
This product has saved my basements on several occasions. The system has a powerful pump, charger, several monitoring features and easy to follow step by step instructions on how to install and troubleshoot the system. The company also has outstanding customer service. I used two 7.5 hour Watchdog batteries (in parallel) for each system which provides days pumping capacity. You would need a parallel jumper cable which I bought from the manufacturer. One piece of advice…although the system monitors the battery fluid levels, which works very well, I like to check mine when I turn the clocks back or just before going on vacation. Overall great product!!!
December 30, 2009
Rated 3.0 out of 5.0 by Cecilia Deceptive description
Describing this product as an AC/DC battery system is not accurate since the battery and acid to power the system is not included in this kit. I spent an additional $125 for a battery and $25 for acid to put in the battery.
There is a censor that needs to be installed and the electrical path so the battery only runs when the home power is off can be confusing. I had a plumber install this system ($125) including adding the acid to the battery just to be sure it was installed correctly.
I live on the waterfront and need a dependable pump for daily use. This is the 2nd system I've had to install in 11 years.
August 5, 2014
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by CapstoneDS It Works and Has Good Displays
I installed the pump myself (no experience). You just need to be willing to cut and glue PVC. It took 2 hours to install.
The operation of the pump is very straight forward and easy to understand. The controlling unit has good displays.
One month after installing, a big storm knocked out our power. The unit kicked in and took over for the 4 hours we were without power. Water was coming into the sump fast, but it had no problems keeping up.
You may be happy with the cheaper versions, I don't really know all of the differences. I do know that I have peace of mind with this thing installed.
I would have rated it as 'excellent' but at $560 including battery and acid, it seems like a good value (not an excellent value).
June 11, 2008
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Tate Great Product
This unit was very easy to install, lightweight and not noisy (compared to the old one). I asked one of the stock guys for assistance at the store before I bought the sump pump and he told me about the battery and battery acid sold separately, if he didn’t tell me I would have assumed that it was all in there. However, the sump pump is a little pricey but I read these reviews and seemed like the right way to go. The sump pump worked for about 2 hours straight once I got it installed and I feel more at ease knowing there is a backup if the power goes out.
November 26, 2013
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Denniswva BONUS--it's compatible with an AGM battery
DItto other Excellent reviews. The only thing I'm adding is the fact that the electronics on the Big Dog model (as well as the inexpensive BWE ) are fully compatible with an Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) battery according to Tech Support. Why is that important? Because, AGM batteries don't produce hydrogen gas when they charge--so pilot lights and other ignition sources in the basement pose no problems! They won't leak or spill even if they're broken, they survive most freezes, and warranties are twice as long as a lead -acid design. (I am NOT an advertiser--just a very happy camper)
April 14, 2010