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When you turn on a faucet to tackle a sink full of dirty dishes or fill your toddler’s bath, you want a strong, steady flow of water to make the task quick and easy. When the water comes out in spurts or is reduced to a trickle, you’re likely experiencing a problem with your home’s water pressure.
The experts at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain are ready to help with all of your residential plumbing needs, but if you want to do some sleuthing on your own before calling a plumbing repair service, here are a few things you can try.
Check the Water Pressure in Your House
Most hardware stores sell pressure gauges that you can use to check your home’s water pressure. Attach it to an outside faucet near the water meter and turn the tap on. A reading of 45 to 55 pounds per square inch (psi) is ideal for a home residence. Municipalities tend to keep water pressure within this range as higher pressure can lead to damaged pipes, wear and tear on appliances and wasted water.
If you’ve recently moved and find that the pressure in your new house is consistently low, it’s possible that the pipes are too small or old. A plumbing repair service can provide an assessment and recommend effective solutions.
Examine Your Fixtures
Consider the water pressure in other parts of the home — is it an issue with just one fixture or the water supply to your whole house?
Problems that are isolated to one part of the house may be the result of a clog. For example, sediment or minerals can build up in a shower head valve or the aerator at the end of a faucet. You can remove these components to clean them and flush out any debris. It’s also possible that parts of the fixture may be rusted or broken. If you’re not certain how to take the fixture apart, call a plumbing repair service to help quickly diagnose the problem.
Make Sure the Water Valves in Your Home are Open
Your home has a number of water valves so the water supply can be turned off during repairs and renovations or in case of emergency.
If the water pressure is low throughout the house, confirm that the main shutoff valve is fully open. This is normally located near your outdoor water meter or water heater. A plumber or contractor who was working on your house may have left it partly closed, affecting your water pressure.
There are also point-of-use valves that control the supply of water to individual fixtures. Low pressure in a bathroom faucet, for example, can be the result of a partly closed water valve under the sink. A quick check of your valves can save a call to a plumbing repair service.
Check Your Pressure Regulator
A sudden difference in water pressure may indicate a failure of your home’s pressure reducing valve or pressure regulator. Not all houses have one, but it’s usually found near the main shutoff valve. The device has a mechanism that widens and narrows to adjust the flow of water into your home to keep pressure stable.
A faulty regulator can result in an abrupt change in water pressure. Ask your local plumbing repair service to examine your device to see if it needs to be adjusted, repaired or replaced.
Search for a Leak
Whether you’re experiencing low water pressure to a specific fixture or the entire house, a leak in water lines can be a tricky thing to locate. Here are a few places to try.
- Look for leaks near the hot water tank, around faucets and toilets and in the garage and basement.
- Check walls and ceilings for blistering paint or water stains.
- See if there are damp spots anywhere on the carpets or flooring.
- Listen for the sound of water running in the walls when faucets are turned off.
- Head outside to check for soggy patches of grass or water pooling in the yard, especially when the weather’s been dry.
If you’re having trouble locating the problem, a plumbing repair service can help.
How is Your Neighbor’s Water Pressure?
There’s a small possibility that any problems with low water pressure are the result of issues with the city’s water main and not your home’s. Check with your neighbors to see if they’re also experiencing changes in water pressure. If they share the problem, it’s likely the municipal supply that’s the source of the low water pressure. In this case, you may want to follow up with the city’s engineering department before calling a plumbing repair service.
Demand on Your Water Supply
If the water pressure drops off when you’re running a bath or doing dishes, check to see if others in your home are using water. Maybe your teenager has started a load of laundry at the same time your spouse is watering the lawn.
Multiple demands on your water supply may mean your family needs to plan when showers are taken, or major appliances are used. The good news in this case is that you don’t need a plumbing repair service. However, if the situation becomes inconvenient for your busy household, a professional can assess your home’s plumbing system to see what options you may have.
Consult A Plumbing Repair Service
There can be many other causes of low water pressure include aging pipes, clogs, corrosion or mineral build-up. While you can do a little detective work to determine why the water pressure is low in your home, you can also save time and turn to the friendly and knowledgeable professionals at bluefrog Plumbing + Drain.
Our plumbing repair service has the equipment and expertise to quickly diagnose problems and provide hassle-free solutions, meeting all of your needs. Call 1-844-HOP-TO-IT day or night and make sure your home plumbing system is working at its best.