On average, the typical American family uses over 300 gallons of water per day. The vast majority of this use happens indoors.
When you rely on water that much, the last thing you want is issues with its flow. One of the most frustrating issues with water flow has to do with low water pressure.
You’ve probably encountered this issue before in your home. You turn on the tap or faucet, and instead of the water spraying out at the volume and speed it usually does, it only dribbles out.
No doubt you’d like to get the problem resolved as quickly as possible. Before you do so, it helps to understand what exactly low water pressure means and the potential culprits behind this problem.
In this comprehensive guide, we tell you everything you need to know about low water pressure, including its causes and how to resolve the problem. Read on to learn more.
What Does Low Water Pressure at Home Mean?
To understand what it means to have low water pressure at home, it helps to know what the ideal residential water pressure is.
Typically, the inlet water pressure to a home is 40 to 45 psi. This pressure shouldn’t exceed 60 psi. Generally, the pressure regulator is set at 50 psi.
If the psi reading is below 40 psi, then you have low water pressure. Readings below 30 psi are considered too low.
Once you notice that you have a low water pressure problem, the first thing you need to do is find out how many locations are affected. If every faucet has low water pressure, then the problem is bigger than when only the sink has low water pressure. In other words, the number of plumbing fixtures experiencing inconsistent water pressure determines the scope of the problem.
Depending on whether the problem affects one fixture, all fixtures in a specific room, or all fixtures in your home, it’s easier to trace what the root issue may be. Widespread low water pressure in your home may indicate a serious plumbing problem.
Before contacting a plumber, take a tour through your home and check the sink faucets, dishwasher, shower, toilet, washing machine, outdoor faucet, and hose hookups. Turn on each fixture, testing both the cold and water temperatures. If the problem only occurs when fixtures are in the hot water setting, chances are the issue lies with the water heater.
Top Causes Low Water Pressure at Home
There are many possible reasons your home may have low water pressure. In this section, we look at six of them.
Your Water Supplier Has an Issue
Before you begin knocking on your pipes or turning valves, ask around. Are your neighbors experiencing the same problem? If so, it’s likely that the low water pressure isn’t caused by something in your house.
The best solution is to call your water supplier to enquire whether they’re aware of the issue. If they are and are working on it, you’ll need to sit tight for a while.
Your Pressure Regulator Is Faulty
If there’s a pressure regulator in your plumbing, you may want to test it to find out whether it’s working properly. Pressure regulators fail over time. Use a water pressure gauge to find out whether it reports the same reading as that of your pressure regulator.
If the readings differ, then it may be time to replace it. You can do this on your own or call in a plumber to do it for you.
Your Pipes Are Clogged
Clogs can build up in the depths of your pipes. Even small clogs tend to gum up the piping and reduce low pressure over time.
This is not a problem you can effectively handle on your own. You don’t want to pull pipes apart only to find you can’t put them back together appropriately. It may worsen the problem and lead to more expensive repairs.
Your Piping Is Corroded
Most homeowners know little about their home’s piping. How old are the pipes in your home? What material are the pipes made from?
All pipes have a lifespan. Galvanized steel pipes will experience corrosion after a few decades. If you have an older home, chances are the piping system is already corroding, hence the water pressure issues you’re experiencing.
The solution is to have your plumbing system inspected for corrosion. If your plumber determines this to be the cause of your low water pressure, you’ll most likely need to repipe your home.
You Have Leaky Pipes
Plumbing leaks are a common issue in most homes today. Thankfully, it’s relatively easy to know when you have leaks in your piping. A flooded basement, water pools near pipes, and water spots in your yard are common signs.
Besides causing loss of water and mounting water bills, leaky pipes can lead to water damage. On many occasions, a leak in your plumbing system can affect the water pressure in your home. The leak misdirects the water supply, so you don’t get the full flow even when everything else is working well.
The solution here is simple. You need to locate the exact spot where water is leaking and fix it. Dry the outside of the pipe completely and patch it up using a rubber patch and electrical tape.
Remember, this is only a temporary solution. You’ll still need to call in a plumber for a more permanent fix, which could mean replacing the pipe.
Some of Your Fixtures Are Faulty
If you’ve determined that the issue isn’t with your water supply or your piping, chances are that your fixtures have a problem. In such a case, you’ll need to have the problematic fixtures repaired or replace them.
Depending on the nature of the problem, you may want to visit a reputable well and pump products supplier to get replacements for faulty parts of your plumbing system.
Fix Issues With Your Home Water Pressure Today
Low water pressure can prove frustrating, especially when it is persistent. The earlier you deal with this problem, the sooner you can restore normalcy in your home. Remember to always work with a professional when tackling such problems.
Are you interested in reliable plumbing products for your home? Please, contact us today.