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Plumbing Questions and Answers

Written by ryan. Posted in Uncategorized

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Published on September 22, 2010 with No Comments

Plumbing Questions and answers
The causes of low water pressure

You are all set for a hot, relaxing shower, but as soon as you turn on the water, you see that you are a victim of low water pressure. Now your relaxing shower has turned into a slow drip. In order to know how to fix low water pressure, you have to start by figuring out what is causing it. Some of the causes of low water pressure include:

Mineral deposits – This is one of the most common causes of low water pressure. Luckily, it is also one of the easiest problems to fix.
As you use water, mineral is slowly left in the pipes, particularly if you have galvanized or cast iron pipes in your house. Making matters worse, using hot water and having pipes that were installed horizontally make it easier for mineral deposits to settle. As those mineral deposits settle, they block the path for water to travel out of your faucet.
Your shower heads and faucets can all fall victim to mineral deposits. To get rid of mineral deposits, all you need to do is unscrew the shower head or faucet, and clean it out. You can even use a toothbrush to do it. A good scrubbing will shake the mineral deposits loose, and leave you with a stronger stream of water.
Peak water times – This is one of the causes of low water pressure that most people never think of, but if you notice that your water is slowing down at certain points during the day, your neighbors could be to blame. For example, if everyone takes a shower in your neighborhood at 7 a.m., it can cause low water pressure for everyone.
Dealing with peak water times can be annoying, but at least you do not even need to know how to fix low water pressure to alleviate the problem. Something as simple as waiting to take a shower can make all the difference.
New faucets – If you noticed your low pressure right after you installed additional fixtures, they could be to blame. The new fixtures may be draining your water pressure. To fix the problem, try getting a bigger main supply pipe, which brings the water from the meter outside into your home.
Broken pressure regulator – In order to make sure the water pressure in your house is right, your pressure regulator was set by the manufacturer long before it was installed at your home. However, pressure regulators tend to break, which can leave you with low water pressure. Luckily, though, they are easy and relatively inexpensive to replace.
You are too far from the water supply – If your house is at the end of the water company’s line, or if you get water from a well that is downhill, you may suffer from low water pressure. The farther your water has to travel, the less powerful it may be. By getting a booster pump, you can ‘boost’ the pressure into your home.
Your water storage tank is too low – Water travels fastest when it is headed downhill or horizontal. If your water has to travel uphill, it has to fight gravity, and you will see low water pressure. All water storage tanks should be installed on higher ground that the homes they serve.
Your home valves may not be on – One of the least-thought of causes of low water pressure is the home valves. If you have low water pressure, check the two home valves – one is in the meter box; the other is at the outside water hose faucet. If they are even slightly turned away from the ‘on’ position, you can have extremely low water pressure.
You may have a leak – Even a tiny leak can lead to dramatically low water pressure. To see if you have a leak, shut off every tap – both inside and outside – read your water meter, wait a few hours, and read it again. If your water usage has gone up, you probably have a leak.
For more information, visit Hines Plumbing, Inc. at 54 Lafayette St. in Valparaiso, or call 219-464-8938.

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