Why Washing Machine Standpipe Overflowing [SOLVED] – Let’s Fix It

The washing machine stand pipe is an important part of your washing machine. This pipe is used to drain the water out of your washing machine. It also regulates the amount of water that enters it. When the stand pipe is leaking, it can cause a flood in your laundry room and this may damage your washing machine and other items in the room.

Washing machine standpipes are fitted to the washing machine in the kitchen to drain the water away from the machine. The water is supplied by a cold water feeder and is normally connected to a shower waste & overflow.

When not run for a while, the water in the pipe can stagnate and block up easily. This causes the water to rise and flow out of the top of the standpipe and down into the cabinets below.

Overflow in washing machine drains can lead to a mold or mildew problem, and in the worst-case scenario, could rot out flooring, cabinetry or drywall. 

Some things that can cause an overflow include clogs, a standpipe that’s too small for the drainage system, or a drain line that has collapsed.

A clogged drainpipe can be the source of a terrible mess that could range from mild inconvenience to catastrophic disaster. Anytime you are faced with the issue of clogged drains, you should be prepared to handle it yourself if possible — or call in the professionals if you face dangerous conditions like sewage leaks.

It’s important to clean your washing machine regularly so that it doesn’t back up into your tub and cause a major clog. Many older washing machines use more than 30 gallons of water per load, which can result in higher bills if a lot of those loads are used. Newer models, however, use less than 25 gallons per load — saving you money on your water bill.

Washing Machine Standpipe Overflowing – Troubleshoot And Diagnosis

Washing Machine Standpipe Overflowing

If your washing machine is overflowing and you’re trying to figure out if the problem is with your drain or with the standpipe, read below for instructions on how to fix it.

Step 1 – Remove the Drain Hose

To remove the drain hose from the standpipe, you must first turn off the washing machine. Use sharp scissors or a utility knife to cut the zip tie that is holding the hose in place.

Guide both ends of the hose through the standpipe and in between the moving drum and stationary tub.

Step 2 – Use A Garden Hose

The standpipe is the place where the drainpipes of your washing machine and bathroom sink converge. It is the central hub of water flow in your bathroom, so if you’re seeing a slow drain when you turn on the faucet, you might want to check it out. The standpipe is under the basin (underneath the sink) or above it (above the sink).

If you suspect that a clog is preventing the washer from draining, try taking a garden hose and sticking it down in the washer standpipe and turning on all the way to confirm that the clog is in fact in the standpipe and not in the washing machine drain hose.

The reason that the garden hose will not unclog the debris is because when a washing machine is pumping out wastewater, it is traveling with twice as much pressure as a garden hose could produce. So if a washing machine’s pump can’t unclog the debris, then a garden hose won’t either.

Step 3 – Use A Auger

Blockages are common in drainage pipes. At this point, you want a long, flexible auger to snake down the drain. Feed it into the drainpipe until you meet resistance. Then, turn it against the blockage — if you can feel anything move, do this for several minutes until the obstruction moves freely. Then, pull out and see if whatever caused the issue came out with it.

Don’t try to clear a blocked kitchen sink by snaking the pipes if the obstruction has moved further than the end of your snake. You could, in fact, make the problem even worse. Instead, use a plunger to dislodge food items or soap build-up and then use a chemical drain cleaner to finish the job.

There are lots of different ways to clear clogged drains. Liquid Plunger or Drano makes it easy for anyone to unclog a drain with simple chemical packets you can drop down the drain and then flush away.

Step 4 – Run Water Down Into Standpipe

If your washing machine is full of water and the water won’t drain into the overflow pipe, you can solve this problem by running a garden hose into the standpipe. Direct the water flow from the hose down into the drain pipe to loosen any debris that may be blocking it. Often, whatever is blocking your sink will become dislodged by flowing water and will fall out of the pipe.

How Does A Washing Machine Drain Excess Water?

The wash cycle goes through three stages: fill, wash, then drain. During the fill stage, water is pumped into the machine to fill the tub with water. Once the tub is full of water, the washing machine turns on its impeller and agitator to start rotating and churning up both clothes and water. The noisy motor and churning action agitate fabrics to remove dirt and stains, which are trapped in pockets within the fabric by detergent.

As you begin the final stages of your laundry cycle, the water is forced from the drum into a drain pump. The pump’s motor reverses direction to force the water up a drain hose into a standpipe connected to your kitchen sink or directly to the home’s drain system. This entire process is powered by the air pressure left in your washer drum.

What To Do When Washer Standpipe Overflows?

Before you begin the diagnosis, make sure that you have read the user manual guide about how to diagnose a washer overflow. Be aware that any steps that you take start with filling the machine up with water and turning on the drain mode. If anything goes wrong and the water starts overflowing, make sure to turn it off before doing anything else.

Turn the dial to drain mode, and put a bucket under the spout in case of leakage. You may also want to turn off the machine’s power switch. Then, open the lid and start performing a diagnostic test — look through the window and watch as it drains.

What you do is fill the sink with water (just as you would if you were doing a regular load of laundry) and see how long it takes before the water begins to drain. If it drains right away, great — that means your clog is small and can be removed easily with a snake. If not, that means your clog may be further down the drainpipe, requiring a larger drain snake to remove it.

What Causes Washing Machine Standpipe To Overflow?

Some of the most common causes of a washing machine standpipe overflow are clogs in the lines, a major change in water pressure, or a major change in water usage.

  • A Kinked washer discharge hose can cause a lot of problems: you’ll have to fix the broken house, spend a lot of money on repairs, and lose the time needed for your family.
  • Washing Machine Drain Pipe too Small: You should be using a 1½” diameter drain pipe for your washing machine. The 1¼” drain hose that is attached to the washing machine itself is meant solely for purpose of draining the water — not for venting the machine. Air needs to be able to flow freely through the drain pipe, which is why you want it to be slightly larger than the hose itself.
  • The drain from your washing machine should never extend past the white P-trap arm that connects to the sink. If you have used the last few inches of your 7″ drain hose, it could be collapsing every time water flows out of the washing machine — which would then cause a backup in your laundry room.
  • P-trap is Missing: The P-trap is an important part of your plumbing system because it ensures that debris, waste and other foreign objects don’t enter the pipes. P-traps are also used to seal off sewer gas from entering a home and to help reduce drain clogs by allowing water to flow smoothly down a drain. When the trap is clogged, or doesn’t have enough slope, it can cause backup water in your home and even lead to potential structural damage.

How To Prevent Standpipe From Overflowing

One of the great things about owning a washing machine is that you can wash clothes on a whim and easily. The standpipe is a tube found at the bottom of your machine that lets the water drain out. A problem can occur if the standpipe becomes clogged, preventing water from draining out properly. This causes your machine to overflow — and it’ll be your responsibility to clean up the mess.

Install a laundry sink

Having a laundry sink is the best thing you can do for your home. It will enable you to keep your washing machine clean, and also provide a space to wash materials that get trapped in the drain pipe of your washing machine. Some experts even recommend using mesh lint catchers on the end of your drain hose to prevent fabrics, lint, hair, and other material from making its way down your drain pipe.

Buy A HE Washer

High-efficiency washing machines use less water, so they’re better for the environment and your wallet! If a drain is clogged by detergent buildup, the water will fill up in the laundry sink before it overflows from the standpipe.

Clean Standpipe regularly

To keep your drains clear, snake them every few months. Soak a drain snake overnight in Drano and then work it through any slow-moving or clogged drains. Use a metal coat hanger if necessary. Once you’re done with the snake, take it out and pour some boiling water down the drain to dissolve the gunk that’s been loosened.

Use Hot Water And Baking Soda

The washing machine becomes a breeding ground for mould, bacteria and fungi that can then spread to the rest of your house. Keep your home clean, fresh, and healthy by pouring a kettle of boiling water down your washing machine drain every month or so. Pour in a cup of baking soda followed by a cup of vinegar, then let the mixture sit for 10 minutes before pouring another kettle of boiling water down the drain.

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