Low water pressure can be frustrating and too much pressure can cause wastewater and wear out plumbing components. You may be able to figure out the reason for the problem yourself, but solving it might require the help of a plumber.
Check the Water Pressure
The water pressure in a house should usually be in the range of 45 to 55 psi. A pressure greater than 80 psi can waste water and energy and can damage faucets, appliances, seals, water heaters, and water softeners. If you get a low-pressure reading, there may be an old and worn-out pressure-reducing valve on the water main, or the shutoff valve may not be open all the way.
Investigate the Source of the Problem
Ask your neighbors if they have low water pressure. If they do, the local authority may be delivering water at a lower-than-optimal pressure. Contact the water department to find out if they can fix the problem.
If the local authority will not raise the water pressure, you can install a pressure booster. That can also help if you have low pressure because water must travel a long distance or uphill to get from the source to your home. A pressure booster uses an electric pump and a pressure tank to increase the pressure of water coming into the house, store pressurized water so it’s available when needed, and increase water flow during times of high demand. A water pressure booster can solve the problem of low pressure, but it may increase your electricity bills. Your local government may also require you to install a reduced pressure and backflow preventer.
If you have city water but your neighbors don’t have a problem with low water pressure, your home may have a worn-out regulator at the meter or where the service line enters the house. You may need to have a plumber replace the regulator.
Your house may have a plumbing leak. Check the reading on the water meter while all faucets and appliances that use water are turned off. Don’t use water for two hours, then check the reading again. A change indicates that there is a leak.
Your home may have low water pressure because pipes have become clogged with mineral deposits or because some of the pipes are too small. You may be able to dissolve mineral deposits yourself or you may need to have a plumber replace pipes.
If your home gets water from a well, there may be a problem with the well pump. Have a professional inspect it and repair or replace it.
Make Sure Your Home has the Right Level of Water Pressure
Too little water pressure can be frustrating, and too much pressure can cost you money and damage your plumbing system. If your home’s water pressure seems off, measure it, do some research to identify the cause of the problem, and have a licensed plumber make repairs if you aren’t qualified to make them yourself.
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