Some appliances, such as water heaters, dish washers, and washing machines use water, and can leak and cause damage to a house. Is there any product or solution to catch and drain leaks outside the house?

  • It's very rare that a catastrophic leak happens without warning. Check the hoses on such appliances regularly & take action if you see drips or if the hoses look worn or decaying. Nov 22, 2019 at 18:02
  • It may be rare, but I worked in insurance and noticed that water heaters leaking was the most often cause of an insurance claim, and it seems something that wouldn't be hard to address with some backup solution.
    – Village
    Nov 22, 2019 at 18:05
  • that's true -- I guess that since I live in New England where almost all water heaters are in the basement so the damage risk is much smaller (even if there isn't a floor drain built in) I didn't consider the problems with a heater popping open in a living area Nov 22, 2019 at 18:10

3 Answers 3


Water heaters have pans. You place the pan under the water heater, then attach a hose to send the water someplace less damaging.

You can also get water sensors, which rest on the floor and sound an alarm if water is detected.

There's less stuff for dishwashers and washing machines, as they only contain water when in use, and there should be someone nearby when in use. Water heaters are commonly left alone for weeks on end, which gives more time for a small leak to turn into something damaging.

  • These can also be known as a Bund, which is to catch and contain a leak, but not necessarily plumbed to remove the fluid. Bunds might be placed under/around a fuel tank, or perhaps a low one under the sump of an old leaky car engine.
    – Criggie
    Nov 23, 2019 at 3:44

Some of these are supplied with “stop leak” hoses on their incoming supply pipe.

Also some washing machines have the base designed with a “dip” with a sensor to turn off the internal valve if it senses water - caught my ex-wife out for a week until number one son looked at it :) ...

  • This -- washing machines and dishwashers would have an electrically operated valve directly at the connection point to the wall. This valve is held closed by a spring and requires power to open. Nov 23, 2019 at 12:05

I've fulfilled customer requests for overflow trays in cases of integrated laundry equipment, for example. You'd essentially install or build a shower pan (with all the same drain plumbing). What type and profile is appropriate depends on the situation. I wish my dishwasher had one as a one-time overflow recently did significant damage to my kitchen floor.

For concealment a full-area grate could be installed at floor level or as an elevated platform.

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