Brooklyn chooses heavy-duty lift station to handle his summer home BR additions

Case Studies 08/16/2023

Brooklyn chooses heavy-duty lift station to handle his summer home BR additions

When director of operations Andy Cooke of Plumber’s Haven decided to add a pair of bathrooms to his summer home’s basement, he chose a plumbing system from Saniflo to pump wastewater to the main drainage line located four feet above.


BROOKLYN, NEW YORK — Plumbing suppliers and showrooms sell several top-of-the-line products to ensure customer confidence. When a showroom associate personally chooses to install a certain product in their homes, it is a clear indication that the product is particularly advantageous.

Andy Cooke, director of operations at Plumber’s Haven, a decorative plumbing and hardware fixtures showroom, recently made this type of statement when he installed a Saniflo lift station in the basement of his summer home. Cooke wanted to build two full basement bathrooms to create the ultimate second home. The home remodel involved a prefab house built on top of the base of a well.

While it is typical for a homeowner to reach out to a contractor for product recommendations, Cooke was more hands-on with this project, thanks to his knowledge of plumbing products and the industry.

With its focus on bathroom and kitchen products, Plumber’s Haven personnel are well-versed in top-of-the-line, decorative plumbing products. In this case, Cooke confined his search to a select group of showroom items that would best fit his summer home remodel.

“It wasn’t a typical project where a contractor would supply everything,” explains Cooke. “I was more involved than the average customer.”

Although Cooke had expertise in the different fixtures brands, he did not have field installation experience. So, Cooke worked with a licensed contractor from Innovative Builders, LLC, asking for his input on the showroom fixtures Cooke had planned to use.

But he soon realized his application could not accommodate conventional, below-floor drainage with conventional plumbing fixtures. The basement floor is situated four feet below the main drainage line in the home, so Cooke figured he needed a pump system to move wastewater vertically from the two full basement bathrooms and into the nearest access point to this main line.

Fortunately, as one of the brands he sells at his showroom, Cooke was more than a little familiar with Saniflo and its many pump system options. Cooke researched other product options before concluding that Saniflo offered the best solution for his basement remodel.

According to Cooke, Saniflo pumps are stronger, more reliable, and an all-around better product than a less costly pump he could pick up at his local Home Depot.

“While this is the first time I’m using Saniflo, I sell it,” says Cooke, “so I know their products well enough to feel comfortable using them for this project.”


Cooke decided to use the Sanicubic 1 VX after researching Saniflo’s catalog. Cooke’s plumber was initially skeptical, as he had never installed a Saniflo product. However, Cooke insisted that the unit was the best product for the basement remodel.

“We could have used a simpler pump unit,” explains Andy, “but the Saniflo product is a high-grade pump that could withstand any conditions.”

To further ensure he was selecting the right Saniflo product, Cooke spoke with Saniflo’s technical support, which confirmed that the Sanicubic lift station could handle drainage from multiple conventional plumbing fixtures he would be installing in the two basement bathrooms.

The Sanicubic 1 VX is a 1.5 HP, heavy-duty simplex Vortex system that pumps wastewater from several bathrooms in a single structure. It can remove waste up to 36 feet vertically through a 2-inch diameter pipe; or up to 20 feet through a 4-inch pipe. Its powerful Vortex pumping action is especially ideal for residential and commercial applications that will experience heavy-duty usage over time.

Here’s how the installer, Innovative Builders, LLC, set up the plumbing in Cooke’s basement for the two full bathrooms:

  • One of the bathrooms has a toilet, sink and shower with the plumbing running through the hallway and into the second bathroom, which has a toilet, sink, and tub with a shower. In a small room in the corner of the basement, the Sanicubic 1 VX sits 30 inches below ground level. The installer created a new drain line for this remodel, with the floor chiseled out, making room for the Saniflo unit. The installer built four walls surrounding the unit with a removable cover for potential maintenance procedures in the future.

  • With the unit in the middle of the two bathrooms, the waste from the fixtures feeds into the Sanicubic 1 VX via two 3-inch pipes that connect to a 4-inch pipe. The latter eventually connects to the Sanicubic 1 VX.

The Sanicubic 1 VX operation is as simple as the installation. The effluent enters the pump through one of three different inlets — one on either side of the unit at the bottom and one on top. These inlets can accommodate 1.5-inch or 4-inch diameter pipes.

With water from the main supply line, greywater runs from the basement to the Sanicubic unit, then outside underneath the deck. The discharge line runs five feet vertically and three feet horizontally. The installer created a new drain line under the floor.

At first, there were operational issues that Cooke and his team could not figure out. Then they discovered they had used a 110-volt plug — standard for most Saniflo drain pumps — rather than the 220-volt connection required by the more powerful Sanicubic 1 VX.

Once Cooke consulted with the Saniflo technical team on the problem, Innovative Builders quickly finished the remodel, just in time for the summer.


Since the installation, Cooke and his family have moved into their summer home, and he reports no second thoughts about going with the Saniflo unit.

“Once you go with the 220-volt line, you understand why the Sanicubic unit is so strong,” explains Cooke. “It’s like a super pump. You hear one injection, and it pushes everything up. It is just much better.”

Meanwhile, the initially skeptical installer had only positive things to say about his first experience with Saniflo: “It was very easy to install,” says the plumber on the job, “thanks to all of the graphics from the manual and videos on the Internet.”

Thanks to Cooke’s expertise throughout the basement remodeling process, he successfully completed the basement remodel while gaining hands-on install experience with a brand he will continue promoting in his showroom.



Subscribe to Newsletter "Saniflo for the Pro's"

SFA SANIFLO U.S.A. – whose parent company originated macerating plumbing technology — offers a complete line of waste and drainage pumping systems for residential and commercial applications. Saniflo developed its innovative, “above-floor plumbing” technology more than a half-century ago and has led its commercialization worldwide. Today, the company markets macerating technology through 24 subsidiaries in 50 countries and has sold more than seven million units worldwide since 1958. Saniflo markets through independent sales agents throughout North America, and the product line is currently available at distributor and dealer locations throughout the United States and Canada.

For more information, contact Saniflo at 1-800-571-8191. Or visit the Saniflo website at

For editorial assistance, including photography, contact John O’Reilly c/o GreenHouse Digital + PR: 708-428-6385 or [email protected].