There is nothing quite as relaxing as hopping in a nice, hot shower with great water pressure. On the other hand, there is nothing quite as annoying as a shower with poor water pressure. Water pressure is critical for washing dishes as well. If you are experiencing problems with your water pressure, schedule an appointment with Drain Wizards to find the cause and the solution.
If you have low water pressure, there are some common issues that could be causing this:
There are many things that can cause blockages in the pipes that run water throughout your home. Grease, food, dirt, foreign objects, hair, and many other things can cause back ups which will reduce water pressure. If you have hard water, minerals can also be the culprit. As the minerals build up within the pipe, the opening that water travels through becomes smaller and smaller, meaning less water comes out.
Leaks are definitely a problem and they can greatly reduce the amount of pressure your water has traveling through your home. Water is diverted to other places so it is not flowing to the desired location. Less water is getting to its destination which might cause the flow to go from a gush to a trickle. Not only is leaking bad for water pressure but it can cause damage to the home by causing mold growth and wood rot. If you think you have a leak, don’t wait, talk to your plumber!
If you have an older home, it may have galvanized steel pipes. When water, oxygen, and certain metals (such as steel) come into contact, there is a chemical reaction. This leads to corrosion, which strips the pipe of galvanization. The pipe begins to break down, which can lead to leaking. Also, because the pipe is no longer protected by the galvanization, minerals in the water have traction and this can lead to mineral scaling or mineral build up within the pipe.
The regulator’s job is to regulate the water pressure that enters your home. It is usually set somewhere between 45 psi and 60 psi (pounds/square inch). If you notice that your home has low water pressure, you should take a look at the pressure regulator and see what the psi is. It is usually located next to the water meter. If you aren’t sure where to look, ask your plumber. After checking your psi, you can talk with your plumber about changing the pressure. They can do that by making adjustments on the regulator. You don’t want to turn the pressure too high because it can cause damage to piping, faucets, and even cause your water heater to explode. Generally, you want your home’s water pressure to be somewhere below 60 psi.
Water Shut Off Valve
Poor water pressure could also be caused by a shut off valve that has been opened only partially. Shut off valves are meant to be fully opened to provide optimal water pressure. There are two main types of shut off valves – lever and wheel. To fully open a lever type valve, adjust the handle until it is completely parallel with the pipe. For a wheel shut off valve, the wheel must be turned counterclockwise until it is really tight. Then, to prevent leaking or the valve becoming stuck, do a quarter turn clockwise. If you aren’t sure where to locate the shut off valve or how to open it completely, talk with your plumber.
Water Meter Valve
This is very similar to the shut off valve, however, it is usually owned by your water company. If it is only partially open, it won’t allow water to flow fully and this can lead to low water pressure. If you have had any plumbing work done recently, and you notice a drop in pressure, check the meter valve to make sure it is fully open.
Taking a shower with great water pressure is awesome, but your home’s water pressure is more important than just that. Pressure that is too high can cause damage to piping, your water heater, and even your loved ones. Pressure that is too low can create problems with cleanliness and the functions of your water system. If you are experiencing low water pressure, schedule a plumbing service appointment with Drain Wizards today!