All ware washing equipment, that's glasswashers and dishwashers, will need a drainage system of some kind. During the search for your perfect unit you will undoubtedly come across the terms gravity pump and drain pump; don’t assume, as many do, that they are one and the same thing. Here we explain exactly what each is and how to determine which option is right for you.
Understanding your Drainage Systems
All commercial ware washers will feature either a gravity drain or a drain pump. This should be specified on each product page and although a seemingly small tit-bit of information, is actually greatly important.
The position of the waste plumbing in your building in relation to the height of your unit’s drainage system will dictate what you need; this isn’t a time for personal preference, taking short cuts or choosing the cheapest option.
How Does a Gravity Drain Work?
A gravity drain, as the name suggests, relies on gravity alone to empty waste water from your glass or dish washer. This option will only function properly when the buildings waste plumbing is lower than the equipment’s drain.
How Does a Drain Pump Work?
A drain pump pumps waste water up from the ware washer to the buildings drainage system. This feature is a necessity when the buildings waste plumbing is positioned higher than the ware washer drain outlet.
Top Tip; In some circumstances glass and dish washers can be raised to give the extra height required to allow a gravity system to be used however this isn’t always a viable option due to space restrictions.
This may all seem straight forward but confusion is more common than you would think! If you get stuck or just want to check that you’re ordering the right unit just take a quick pic of your waste system and send it over to our sales team who will be more than happy to help.
You will see options for drain pumps and gravity drains in any equipment that has a water connection, not only commercial glass washers and dish washers but also ice machines.
General Information and Advice
Imagine the scenario; you’ve ascertained that you need a drain pump and you’ve located the perfect unit, but wait, it’s only supplied with a gravity drain! Don’t panic – many units offer a drain pump option for an additional cost so you can still have your ideal piece of equipment.
Warewashers with an integrated drain pump will generally have a higher price tag, however if it is a necessity, it is an expense that must be met. Due to the upward nature of this drainage system it is prone to blockages from debris if the machine isn’t regularly cleaned.
Whenever possible, gravity drains are always the best option; not only do they have less upfront cost but also have fewer elements that can go wrong in the future.
Before placing and finalising an order always decipher exactly what you need. Just as you have put the research into selecting your warewashing equipment, you also need to show the same consideration to drainage. Failure to order the correct drainage system could become a costly mistake to rectify. There are generally two options to remedy the situation. Drain pumps can be retro fitted to units (that’s when it’s fitted when the washer is already on site and positioned) however this will obviously incur additional expense. Alternatively you could send the order back if you decide it is unsuitable. Should you wish to return your purchase you will be charged a restocking fee.
For further information about choosing a commercial warewasher that suits your business needs check out our handy buying guide.