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    sanfordm's Avatar
    sanfordm Posts: 6, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    Aug 27, 2006, 12:32 PM
    Apparently Common Washing Machine Drain Overflow
    We live in a townhouse, about 35 years old, with a washing machine, about five years old, that does super load sizes, very high spin rate, really pumps the water out. It's installed on the groundfloor draining via hose to a vertical drain pipe -- installed in a pretty standard water closet. The drain pipe isn't very large in the first place, it's old and narrowed by crud and the washer really pushes it's capacity. Today it's overflowing again. We've had both the washer drain and the main drain snaked by a professional; the first time it made a huge difference, buying us about 3 months of clear draining; the next time it made little real difference. Although there may be some temporary partial blockages coming and going in the drains, probably the main drain, I think the real problem is this washing machines flow rate versus that tiny old drain.

    Here's the question, though. With a large load water capacity, but run on delicate instead of regular cycle, the washer doesn't spin as fast during drain, so it doesn't push the water out as fast, and the drain pipe doesn't come near to overflowing. This made me think, the flow rate is really the issue here, since the problem keeps coming up. And everywhere else I've lived there's been a little elbow shaped pipe used to hang the drain hose in the drain pipe. Here they just installed it by connecting some rubber hose to the washer's exhaust hose and dropping that hose maybe a foot into the drain pipe. Doesn't that hard turn in the V-shaped pipe act as an engineered bottleneck? To keep the flow rate of the washing machine from overcoming the skinny drain pipe? Should we try installing one of these drain pipe kits at the end of the washer exhaust hose, then dropping that into the drain?

    Also, if anyone knows, is there any reason we can't just wash all our clothes, towels, sheets, etc. on delicate until we get this drain problem fixed? I've even noticed the regular cycle beats the heck out of some things, like the quilt we keep on our bed. Our clothes and the kids/baby clothes will still get clean enough on the delicate cycle, won't they?
    speedball1's Avatar
    speedball1 Posts: 29,301, Reputation: 1939
    Eternal Plumber
     
    #2

    Aug 27, 2006, 01:03 PM
    The spin cycle ejects the water out of the clothes and the pump is what pumps it out of the tub. The bigger the fill in the tub the more water's discharged. It all boils down to the pumps capacity and not how fast the tub spins.
    35/40 years ago we plumbed washers with a 1 1/2" trap and standpipe. Today it's all 2" with the more powerful pumps and sometimes that won't handle the load. Scroll down and read what some of the others are doing about the same problem. Regards, tom
    sanfordm's Avatar
    sanfordm Posts: 6, Reputation: 1
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    #3

    Aug 27, 2006, 01:19 PM
    Thanks, Tom. I did read ahead and it seems like we've done about as much as we can with snaking. As in, keeping the drain completely clear does help with the excess pump power, but we can't afford to have the drain snaked every month.

    I'm assuming any water that backs up comes out the drain mouth and onto the floor, and nothing gets pushed back into the washer tub? (The tub is always dry after the spin cycle, even though the drain overflows.)

    I wonder why we get no backflow and drain overflow on the delicate cycle. The water fill volume is the same on this unit for all cycles; large is large whether it's the regular or delicate cycle. Maybe the pump runs at about half power during the delicate cycle, though I don't know why they'd engineer that. Too bad there's not a switch on there where I can set the pump to that lower power mode during a regular cycle. Probably wouldn't time right with the regular spin cycle, though.

    Oops, I checked Google and may have just figured it out. Apparently rapid draining is hard on delicate fabrics. In fact handwash and machine-washable wool cycles on some machines leave the tub full at the end of the run. So that must be it, delicate cycle pumps the water out but just not as fast as for tougher fabrics.
    DixieL's Avatar
    DixieL Posts: 10, Reputation: 1
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    #4

    Jun 21, 2007, 04:34 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by sanfordm
    We live in a townhouse, about 35 years old, with a washing machine, about five years old, that does super load sizes, very high spin rate, really pumps the water out. It's installed on the groundfloor draining via hose to a vertical drain pipe -- installed in a pretty standard water closet. The drain pipe isn't very large in the first place, it's old and narrowed by crud and the washer really pushes it's capacity. Today it's overflowing again. We've had both the washer drain and the main drain snaked by a professional; the first time it made a huge difference, buying us about 3 months of clear draining; the next time it made little real difference. Although there may be some temporary partial blockages coming and going in the drains, probably the main drain, I think the real problem is this washing machines flow rate versus that tiny old drain.

    Here's the question, though. With a large load water capacity, but run on delicate instead of regular cycle, the washer doesn't spin as fast during drain, so it doesn't push the water out as fast, and the drain pipe doesn't come near to overflowing. This made me think, the flow rate is really the issue here, since the problem keeps coming up. And everywhere else I've lived there's been a little elbow shaped pipe used to hang the drain hose in the drain pipe. Here they just installed it by connecting some rubber hose to the washer's exhaust hose and dropping that hose maybe a foot into the drain pipe. Doesn't that hard turn in the V-shaped pipe act as an engineered bottleneck? To keep the flow rate of the washing machine from overcoming the skinny drain pipe? Should we try installing one of these drain pipe kits at the end of the washer exhaust hose, then dropping that into the drain?

    Also, if anyone knows, is there any reason we can't just wash all our clothes, towels, sheets, etc. on delicate until we get this drain problem fixed? I've even noticed the regular cycle beats the heck out of some things, like the quilt we keep on our bed. Our clothes and the kids/baby clothes will still get clean enough on the delicate cycle, won't they?
    Over two years ago I purchased a new Kenmore washer with a drain overflow problem. The old washer (only 5 years old) drained fine. Our drain pipe was 2 inches. We thought it was a clogged drain, but it wasn't. We had to temporarily have the gray water exit through the window. Yesterday it dawned on me that the old washer drain hose had a hard plastic "U" where it went into the wall drain pipe; the new hose did not. I went to the store and purchased a new hose with a "U" in the end. Evidently, besides helping the hose stay in the drain pipe, the "U" slows down the waterflow. PROBLEM SOLVED!
    josiestew's Avatar
    josiestew Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #5

    Jul 8, 2009, 04:21 PM
    We have the same problem and have solved it by purchasing a "laundry tub". The washing machine drains into this tub and then out of the tub into the drain pipe. The laundry tub is free standing heavy plastic and holds the excess water that was overflowing out of the drain pipe, which allows it to drain at a rate that the pipe can handle. Our problem is solved. Hope this helps.
    norjope's Avatar
    norjope Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #6

    Jul 17, 2010, 07:03 PM

    I bought an 8 inch tube extension for the standpipe. I have no more pump water overflowing! But I have water backing up into kitchen sink. But I can deal with it, as the backed-up water in the kitchen sink will drain fairly quickly after about 5 minutes.
    Milo Dolezal's Avatar
    Milo Dolezal Posts: 7,187, Reputation: 522
    Plumbing Expert
     
    #7

    Jul 17, 2010, 09:44 PM

    norjope: this is more than 4 (four) years old thread. Don't piggy back. Start your own... Thank you... Milo
    rdjirasek's Avatar
    rdjirasek Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #8

    Jan 28, 2011, 04:00 PM
    GVii valve was invented to stop washer drain overflows.For more info on this low cost solution go to gviivalve.com Thanks
    LokenContractor's Avatar
    LokenContractor Posts: 9, Reputation: 1
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    #9

    Nov 17, 2011, 10:50 AM
    Actually the new code is 3" ID for drain pipes that are run horizontally as the new washing machines have more than doubled the rate in which they drain. 16GPM to almost 32GPM.

    Solutions
    1. Divert water to laundry sink and then into drain.
    2. Get an older washing machine that was in mind when they built your home.
    3. Update your drain size to meet new plumbing code and accomidate your new washing machine and the rate the pumps drain.
    LokenContractor's Avatar
    LokenContractor Posts: 9, Reputation: 1
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    #10

    Nov 17, 2011, 10:53 AM
    Back Flow preventers will not help if the water will not drain. A simple valve will not correct your issue unless the connection is water tight otherwise the back flow preventer will stop the drain and water will still overflow. Even if the connection is water tight you will then put added stress on your pump and cause your machine to fail. Se my three solutions.
    speedball1's Avatar
    speedball1 Posts: 29,301, Reputation: 1939
    Eternal Plumber
     
    #11

    Nov 22, 2011, 05:59 PM
    Loken,
    You're responding to a 5 year old dead thread. Please look in the upper left hand corner before you post. I agree with your statement,
    Actually the new code is 3" ID for drain pipes that are run horizontally as the new washing machines have more than doubled the rate in which they drain. 16GPM to almost 32GPM.
    That would solve a lot of washer backups.
    You through in solution#2 for laughs didn't you? I can't see any home owner swapping their shiny new Sears washer for a 7 year old Maytag. There are ways to control washer backups. I'll be glad to explain. And by the way whose code is it to go to 3"? Yours or does it include all codes? Regards, Toim
    deeg15's Avatar
    deeg15 Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #12

    Feb 17, 2012, 07:02 PM
    Is there no way to restrict the flow? I have the "U" at the bottom of the stand pipe, and the curved rubber part that goes into the stand pipe.I think my line is a 2" cast iron pipe under the slab running below the back wall. Snaked it, ran Hot water from a hose into it, etc. Breaking up my patio and slab is not what I want to (or can afford) to do. We have a sink in the Laudry room that has been overflowing all over the floor and has already ruined a lot of baseboarding. Right now, I have the water going out my window!!
    sexyg43's Avatar
    sexyg43 Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #13

    May 25, 2012, 05:46 PM
    Hi, I have that same overflow problem. I solved it by connecting an inlet water hose to the end of the drain hose with a 1" hose fitting adapter. I cut the length to about 3.5 feet and insert it into the drain. No overflow on the spin cycle. Hope this helps.
    speedball1's Avatar
    speedball1 Posts: 29,301, Reputation: 1939
    Eternal Plumber
     
    #14

    May 26, 2012, 06:08 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by sexyg43 View Post
    Hi, I have that same overflow problem. I solved it by connecting an inlet water hose to the end of the drain hose with a 1" hose fitting adapter. I cut the length to about 3.5 feet and insert it into the drain. No overflow on the spin cycle. Hope this helps.
    What's a "inlet hose"? Are you saying all you did was to extend the washer drain hose 3 1/2 down into the stand pipe and that stopped your overflow problem? I don't see how that changed anything. All you did was make the washer hose longer. How does that work to prevent backups? Back to you, Tom

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