This might be more a general knowledge-type question or physics basics (or maybe not even physics) if so, I apologize and never took a physics class (my school never offered it), so I am not really sure what it is to begin with, but I need a definitive answer as this is sort of a semi-emergency type situation.

So my question is basically: Can water travel up a bathtub wall if there is no or little water pressure in a hose? Would the water just build up and eventually go out the other end (as I hope) or would water just slide back down and out of the "bad" end of the hose?


There is a leak in my bathroom coming from a neighbor upstairs. The landlord is aware of it, and it will be fixed ASAP, so that is not an issue but for now, water is dripping near the very bottom of a cabinet and flooding the floor pretty quick. Sometimes it just drips and sometimes it's pretty strong (almost like a faucet) I guess depending on if they are using the sink or shower.

I want to use a funnel and hose to put in the bath tub so it can drain in the tub, but the hose is low (on the floor) and would have to go UP the bathtub wall, so is that possible?

I know if there is [a lot] of water pressure it would work of course, but what if there was only a little water pressure? Would the water just not move or slowly go up and fall back down or would this work?

I don't have time to "try it" as I have to leave for a few days and am not even sure which neighbor it is, but I can't stay in the apt forever waiting for them to use the sink/shower and don't want to come back to a flooded bathroom/apt.

  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Stack Exchange. Although I've already posted an answer based on my guess of your situation, a clear diagram or photo, showing the height of the water's current location versus the height of the tub drain, would really help. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 19, 2015 at 21:13

1 Answer 1


Unless you persuade it somehow, water flows downhill.

The only way your plan would work without a pump would be for the water level at the source end of the hose to be higher than the water level at the destination end of the hose. You'd then set up a syphon that would pull the water from the (higher) floor into the (lower) tub. With a syphon, the water would briefly travel uphill, but the net motion would be downhill, which would pull the water through the pipe.

I seriously doubt that's the case for you, though. The tub would have to have been set into the floor when built, with its interior bottom lower than the surface of the floor. Tubs are almost always set on top of an existing floor, with their lowest point significantly higher than the floor itself. If you set up a syphon in that case, it would be a great way to get water out of the tub onto the floor, but that isn't what you're looking for.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for answering, you saved me from buying the hose and funnel just for that reason I guess I'll just wait with a bowl and alot of towels on the floor :-/ $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 19, 2015 at 22:32
  • $\begingroup$ Probably not what OP wanted to hear, but correct. $\endgroup$
    – Floris
    Commented Dec 20, 2015 at 1:31
  • $\begingroup$ Glad this is helpful. If you feel this answered your question, feel free to click the checkmark to indicate that it does. $\endgroup$ Commented Dec 20, 2015 at 1:54

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.