Do You Have Low Water Pressure In Your Entire Home? Here Are 3 Common Causes And How You Can Fix Them
Low water pressure won't damage your home's plumbing like high water pressure will, but it's an annoyance to live with. When a single plumbing fixture has low water pressure, it's usually a problem within a fixture itself—for example, a clogged valve or supply line. However, If your whole home has low water pressure it can be a sign of a problem with your home's plumbing. To learn more about what can cause your whole home to have low water pressure and how you can fix it, read on.
1. Low Municipal Water Pressure
Your low water pressure may be due to the fact that your home simply isn't receiving enough water from the city's pipes. This can be a common issue for homes that are built on hills. This problem can also happen intermittently due to your neighbor's water usage. If they're all running sprinkler systems or otherwise using a large amount of water, they'll reduce the pressure of the water entering your home.
You can check the municipal water pressure by purchasing a pressure gauge from a home improvement store and measuring the water pressure at your home's main supply valve. If the pressure is low at the main supply valve, then the municipal water system is at fault rather than your home's plumbing.
One way that you can fix this issue is to have a water pressure tank installed by a plumbing contractor. Pressure tanks use an air pump to pressurize a large reservoir of water. They require electricity to operate, but they'll provide your home with high-pressure water even when municipal water pressure is low.
2. Malfunctioning Pressure Regulator Valve
Newer homes often have a pressure regulator valve installed on the main supply line. The purpose of this valve is to reduce the pressure of water before it enters your home—if water pressure is too high, it can cause damage to your pipes and plumbing fixtures.
The valve contains a spring and a gasket that restricts the amount of water that's allowed to flow into your home, which reduces the pressure of the water in your home's plumbing. A stuck gasket in the pressure regulator valve can restrict the flow of water too much, causing a significant water pressure drop in your home. If your home has a pressure regulator valve and your water pressure suddenly drops, have the valve inspected by a plumbing contractor—they're not expensive, and replacing a broken valve will fix your water pressure issues.
3. Rusted Galvanized Pipes
Older homes with galvanized steel pipes often begin to suffer from low water pressure all throughout the house. The reason behind this is that galvanized pipes corrode on the inside over time. Rust buildup will restrict the amount of water that can flow through the pipe, which will reduce the pressure of the water coming out of your home's plumbing fixtures.
If you have old galvanized steel pipes and low water pressure throughout your home, have your pipes inspected by a plumbing contractor. If rust is restricting the flow of water, you'll need to have the pipes replaced. There's no safe way to remove rust from the inside of the pipe, since the rust buildup may be blocking pinhole leaks in the pipe. Removing the rust can cause the pipes to leak. Once your galvanized steel pipes are replaced and water flows normally again, your water pressure will be restored.
Overall, restricted water flow is typically the cause behind low water pressure across your entire home. The problem may lie in your home's plumbing (such as rusted galvanized pipes) or it may be due to low flow from the municipal water system. If you're tired of dealing with low water pressure in your home, call a plumbing contractor and have your home's plumbing inspected. Even if the problem is outside of your home, you'll always have the option of increasing your water pressure by having a pressure tank installed.
If you are looking for a plumbing contractor, contact a company like Bud's Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning & Electric.