High water pressure…most of us love it. A lot of water, with great force, is a good thing. Or is it? Actually, high pressure can be damaging to your home’s pipes and waste a lot of water. On the flip side, a trickle of water in the shower due to low water pressure shower is extremely frustrating. So how to find the right balance? This week, our Sacramento plumbers give us a little DIY advice.
Testing Water Pressure
A inexpensive water pressure gauge can be purchased at most local and big box hardware stores. Use the gauge to test an outside faucet and several on taps on the inside of your home. The pressure should be 50 to 60 pounds psi, or pounds per square inch. When you have too little or too much water pressure, the goal is to find the source of the trouble.
Low Water Pressure
A low water pressure assessment could begin by removing showerheads and aerators. Sometimes the strainers in these fixtures are blocked with scale or lime, and they simply need to be cleaned out. If you have a well that uses an automatic pump, there might be something wrong with the pump’s regulator or a loose belt. Once in a while, it gets cold enough to freeze a pipe or pressure switch which will also cause the water pressure to drop.
Sometimes the problem has nothing to do with the home’s plumbing system and is the fault of the municipal water supply. Here in Sacramento, when high temperatures run three consecutive days, the city issues a Spare the Water Alert asking for voluntary water reduction to insure there is enough water pressure for emergency services. Run appliances and sprinklers systems during non-peak hours — in the evening or early morning is best.
High Water Pressure
Too much pressure can cause leaks, problems at joints, even pipe banging in addition to huge water waste. One of the simplest fixes for high water pressure is installing a pressure reducing valve. This can be done easily, but a qualified Sacramento plumber can help. Once installed, learn how to adjust your water pressure valve for the right balance. If pressure valve is set correctly and you still have problems, there could be another problem and more detailed look at your plumbing is required.
The right water pressure is important for water reduction and comfort. If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, give the professionals at Ace a call today.