Dealing with a loss of water pressure in your home can be very frustrating. When you take a shower to start your day, you receive a minimal amount of water. On the other hand, you have struggle to wash the food off your dishes are not receiving water at your kitchen sink. Wouldn’t it be nice to address the problem now and prevent it from happening in the future? We certainly think so! To help you diagnose the source of the problem, we have compiled a list of 6 ordinary causes of low water pressure and a couple of troubleshooting methods.
Water Pipe Deterioration
Older houses were built with copper and galvanized steel pipes. If you notice stains on your walls, this is a sign of a broken water pipe. To prevent water damage, it’s important to be familiar with the age of the pipes behind your ceiling and walls. Copper pipes feature a life cycle of 50 years or higher depending on the concentration of minerals in your water. On the other hand, the lifespan of galvanized steel pipes ranges from 20 to 30 years or more. Do you notice brass pipes beneath your floor or above your ceilings?
Brass pipes are engineered with a life cycle of 70 years or higher. If you live in an old house and have low water pressure, this is an indicator of corrosion in your brass or galvanized steel pipes. The cause of the pipe corrosion behind your walls may be excess calcium and magnesium in your water. On the other hand, the source of the pipe deterioration may be a recent remodel project. If you are adding a brand new bathroom to your home, you will be required to install larger water pipes behind your walls to accommodate the new sinks and fixtures.
To save money, a large number of homeowners decide to keep their old water pipes instead of installing bigger pipes when they remodel a bathroom. If you choose to keep your current pipes, they will be required to work harder to circulate water to your new sinks and fixtures. Since your pipes will be required to process excess water, they will start to deteriorate at a fast rate. To prevent pipe deterioration, it’s critical to increase the size of your water pipes when you add a bathroom to your house.
We’ve written before about the various types of problems that can be caused by hard water, so we’ll be brief here and say that it’s not good for your plumbing. If you have hard water in your neighborhood, minerals such as calcium and magnesium will start to collect in your pipes over time. As the buildup of minerals in your pipes becomes larger, the diameter of your pipes will become smaller. Since the diamater of your pipes are decreasing, minerals such as calcium may be the source of low water pressure in your house. Installing a water softener will prevent the accumulation of minerals in your pipes and indirectly increase your water pressure.
Collection of Minerals on Shower Head
If you notice that your water pressure is only reduced at a single fixture, such as your shower head, you will be happy to hear that your water pipes are in great condition. The cause of the lower water pressure is a buildup of sediment on your shower head. Fortunately, this is an easy fix. Soak your shower head in vinegar for ten minutes or longer. You may even want to take a tooth brush and scrub away any excess scale to improve the circulation of water in your shower.
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Main Water Meter Valve is Closed
Every house in your neighborhood is equipped with a main water meter valve that is engineered to control the distribution of water in your pipes. If you notice low water pressure in your house, it’s important to perform an inspection of the water meter valve to confirm its open. This valve may be installed on the side of your house or in a basement. In addition, you may find your water meter valve in a supply closet or underground. Regardless of the location of the valve, it will be located next to the water meter that is integrated into your main water pipe.
Once you find the valve, check the handle to see if your water is on or off. If the water meter valve is perpendicular to the main water pipe, the valve is closed. To eliminate the low water pressure on your property, adjust the handle of the valve to a parallel position with the water pipe. Is the water pressure in your house low after you adjust the water meter valve? Call a representative from your local water distribution company to receive help. The valve is maintained by the water supply organization in your neighborhood.
Damage to the Pressure Regulator Valve
The pressure-reducing valve helps to minimize water waste, but it won’t function properly forever. Typically, after a decade or two of use, the valve will become less effective and can cause your water pressure to change. If your pressure-reducing valve is relatively new, try making adjustments by turning the screw on top of the valve, tweaking your water pressure. The correct water pressure rating for a home varies from 45 to 60 PSI. If the pressure is below 40 PSI, you will not receive enough water to operate your shower, dish washer, or fixtures. On the other hand, the pressure should be set to 60 PSI or below to prevent the formation of cracks in your water or sewage pipes. If adjusting the screw on the valve does not fix the problem, this is a sign of a damaged pressure regulator valve.
Tired of dealing with low water pressure in your home and not knowing how to fix it? No pressure (sorry, we had to). Just bring in the professionals of Stephens Plumbing to assess and fix the problem! We offer emergency plumbing services in areas of Illinois including Aurora, Plainfield, Elmhurst, Naperville, Downers Grove, and Bolingbrook. Give us a call at (630) 968-0783 or schedule an appointment online.
Your pipes work hard for you, frequently channeling water where you need it. As your water pipes become old, it is not abnormal for clogs to form beneath your floors or behind your walls. Once a water pipe becomes clogged, you will start to notice a decrease in water pressure when you are showering or washing dishes. On the other hand, a change in water pressure may be related to a water leak near a loose pipe joint. These pipe related problems are common causes of low water pressure issues, but they can also be quite difficult to repair.
Leaking pipes can be a pain to pinpoint. Clogged pipes, on the other hand, can be an expensive fix. But if you have an inkling that your water pressure is being hampered due to an issue with your pipes, don’t delay in addressing the problem. Allowing it to worsen over time can result in much bigger expenses down the road. If the problem indeed lies within your pipes, we recommend scheduling a water line repair appointment with our team of plumbers. Our staff of licensed technicians offers trustworthy plumbing and HVAC repair services for broken water heaters, clogged drains, inefficient sump pumps, and damaged garbage disposals. We have satisified thousands of customers in your local neighborhood and are dedicated to restoring the distribution of water in your house. Our team of emergency plumbers is insured to prevent to prevent accidents. Give our team a call by phone at (630) 968-0783 to schedule an appointment.