Appliance Tip of the Day: Sudsing out of Your Washer Drain Stand Pipe

by Samurai Appliance Repair Man on August 27, 2002

in Washer Repair

appliance tip of the day archive

Dammit! It happened again: you ran a load of wash and came back to find detergent suds all over the floor. What a frikkin’ mess! At first, you might suspect the washer as the culprit. But you’d probably be wrong. Oh, I know what you’re saying, “But I saw the suds pooled up on the floor right underneath the washer! I was there, you weren’t and, besides, I use my washer everyday so I know it better than you!” Ok, you’re starting to annoy me now. Press your lips firmly together for a couple minutes and you just might learn something.

Most likely what you’re dealing with here is detergent suds backing up in your washer’s drain stand pipe and running down all over the floor. Here are four simple things to do to prevent this problem from happening again:

  • Make sure that your washer stand pipe is at least 36″ tall, measured from the floor to the pipe opening.
  • Verify your drain pipe is clear of gookus and drains properly. A plumber’s snake is the essential tool for this highly cerebral operation. It’s important to remember that while a slow drain may pass clear water normally, detergent-laden water will not flow as freely and any restrictions in the pipe will cause the water to foam up even more, exacerbating the problem.
  • You’re using waaaay too much detergent. If you’re following the idiot directions on the detergent box, you’re using 2 to 4 times more detergent than you need. Not only can this cause drain pipe sudsing problems, but it gunks up the innards of your washing machine and you end up wearing all that extra detergent on your clothes, including your skivvies next to your private parts. Might give a new explanation for that persistent jock problem.
  • Install a Sudsbuster (stand pipe adapter).

Ok, you have your assignment, now get to work.

grasshoppers relaxing with the master after installing suds control measures on their washer


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