How High Can A Washing Machine Pump? (Read This First)

By - Rajib Ahmed

Updated -

Do you want your washer pumping faster? If so, you’d need to pay attention to its mounted level. 

Not mounting your washing machine at the appropriate height may lead to issues like reduced cleaning and effectiveness. 

So, the height at which the washer is mounted is just as important as the health of the washer itself. Thus, you need to know the exact height for installing your unit.  

Now, how high up exactly should a washer pump be? Find out in this extensive guide.

A washer’s pumping speed will depend on; the motor power, type, and mechanical condition. Usually, washing machines can pump at a maximum discharge height of 6 to 8 feet (243.84cm) and a minimum of three feet vertically. However, a large washer with a longer hose extension can pump up to 150 (30 feet) horizontally.

This article will give you a thorough guide on washing machines, showing how to install them at just the right height and so much more.

By the end, you’ll have gotten just enough information to get you through picking the right washing machine for your household purposes. 

How High Can a Washing Machine Pump Water Above The Ground?

How High Can a Washing Machine Pump

It’s always best that your washing machine be approximately 30 inches in diameter for it to function properly.

Also, for your top load washer to work correctly, it should not be less than 96 inches which can be over 6 to 8 feet (2.4m) vertically above ground level. 

And over 150 inches, which should amount to nothing less than 30 feet when measured horizontally above the ground.

Although, most washers can reach over 8 feet above the drain. So, you should always check with the manufacturer to be sure that the specifications of your washing machine are accurate.

In terms of the drain hose, it’s a general recommendation that your hose be nothing less than 24 inches in diameter up from the ground.

However, Unitized, Top loading, and Front loading washing machines from manufacturers like Hotpoint and GE have been equipped with more powerful pumps.

These pumps can pump water vertically as high up as 8 feet above the ground with more efficiency. 

Nonetheless, you can use some compact washers like the Space-Saving and SpaceWater, which can pump water up to five feet above ground level.

But, it’s always best to get a drain pipe for these particular washers that are at least 1- ½ inch in diameter to enable smooth and appropriate drainage.

Because the flow rate of the pump in the drain pipe will have to be proportional to the height of the pipe which is in the drain pipe.

With this, you can achieve a maximum of 15 gallons per minute. This height will pump water at a rate of 10 gallons per minute.

However, the flow rate will roughly decline by one gallon per minute for each foot that you decrease the drain pipe height. 

How High Can a Top Load Washing Machine Pump Water Vertically?

As stated earlier, the GE and Hotpoint top load washers have strong drain pumps to discharge water at a vertical level of over 8 feet high above the ground.

However, factors such as the power and strength of your top loader, as well as its newness, will also determine how high it will pump water vertically.

Nevertheless, always ensure to keep the drain of your top load washing machine vertically at approximately 30 inches to prevent the siphoning of water.

Siphoning here means the washer will become full and drain out water at the same time. 

It occurs when you position the end of the drain hose too low, and the water inside the washer machine begins to seep out due to gravity.

Additionally, siphoning can still occur if you push the drain hose too far into the drain pipe of your top-load washing machine. 

That is why it’s generally recommended that you don’t mount the drain hose more than five inches into the drain pipe, especially for new top-load washers. 

Should a Washing Machine Drain Hose Go Up?

Yes, you should always keep your washing machine drain elevated. You should always ensure that it’s elevated at a level that’s higher than the washer itself. 

Keeping it raised at this level will help in preventing water from siphoning back into the washing machine. Therefore, it’s always best to know how to place the drain hose properly.

By doing this, you should be able to decrease the risk of an overflow while also keeping siphoning to a minimum in your laundry room.

Additionally, you’ll be able to prevent pipes from getting clogged, which can lead to an overflow.

Failing to do so might lead to a clogged standpipe, which may consequently cause an overflowing washing machine drain. 

This overflow occurs when the end of your drain hose is at a lower level than the washer, which then leads to water flowing back into the washer as a result of gravity.

And this is why it’s generally recommended to keep your hose raised to a point that goes way up above the level of the washing machine.

However, this shouldn’t lead you to install your washer too high. Because placing your drain hose too high can cause backflow, which is just as bad as an overflow.

Elevating a drain hose too high will put too much pressure on your washing machine to pump out drained water to your standpipe. 

The standpipe is responsible for connecting a drain hose to the sewer line. It also keeps the water in the washing compartment (located below the drain) at a level that controls the water flow.

Thus, it’s always best to install your washer hose exactly 18 to 30 inches up from the floor. Anything higher than this could pull the trap dry due to the water volume.

Also, the drain hose should measure at least two inches in diameter so that it can function optimally. Also, ensure that it can accommodate most of the other drains.

If the drain hose or standpipe is located close to a wall, try placing the curved end of the hose into the drain pipe.

Thus, to prevent any siphoning or overflow of the drain pipe, it would be best to keep your drain hose at precisely 34 inches above the ground.

Should I Get a Washing Machine Drain Booster Pump?

Ideally, you’d need a booster pump for your washer, especially if you want to mount the washer in your basement. 

Because if all the drains are at ground level, you’d need to install a certain booster pump.

Although these pumps might be necessary for the best performance of your washing machine, you should always bear in mind that they may fail at some point. 

For example, overheating may occur due to running the pumps for extended periods. 

This situation may cause it to become extremely hot, leading to mechanical failure of your pump and, consequently, your washing machine.

Additionally, electrical issues also lead to the failure of a booster pump when the electrical components, such as the motor and capacitors, stop working.

Broken impellers are also known for sometimes causing damage to a booster pump. When the impeller is broken, it will prevent the pump from working properly. And the list goes on.

However, if you can detect these issues early, your plumber should be able to fix them and have your pump working perfectly.

Moreover, you could also try fixing it yourself with the manufacturer’s guide if it’s a minor issue.

In addition, a booster pump is a better choice if you often experience low water pressure with your washing machine. And this is because they increase the water pressure of the washer. 

So, even though it may not be necessary for the particular washer you use, not having to experience low water pressure with the washer makes it a must-have.

Also, it’s always best to mount the booster bump near the washer to pump water into the washing machine immediately after you turn it on.

Although you could install it near your water tank or household main supply. As long as it pumps the water to your desired level.

However, purchasing a washing machine drain pump might be a better option if you usually experience issues draining water from your washer.

And this is because a drain pump is designed specifically to remove wastewater from the washer during the draining phase of the wash cycle.

Consequently, you should check the cause of your drainage issue before opting for a booster pump. 

For instance, plumbing issues such as clogged drainage may prompt you to purchase a booster pump. So, always make an inspection first before deciding your course of action.

Notwithstanding, you can fix this issue yourself or with the assistance of a plumber. Although this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get a booster pump if the situation requires it.

Installing a booster pump may come with its luxuries, but it has drawbacks. 

While some users might find increasing the water pressure in their washers beneficial, it still has some disadvantages. 

Some of these include;

ConvenienceCost and maintenance
Improved washing performanceIncreased water usage
Reduced risk of clogsPotential damage to plumbing
Better drainageNoise
Reduced wear and tearEnergy use

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