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What Causes Low Water Pressure?

faucet with water trickling
After a long day at work, a shower is an optimal way to refresh yourself. You step in the shower and turn the handle. But instead of the rejuvenating jets of warm water, you are met with a weak trickle.
Low water pressure, at the bare minimum, is unsatisfying. The ramifications of the problems extend beyond the bathroom to your sinks, dishwasher, and washing machine. Low water pressure in a house may also be a harbinger of significant structural damage.

What Are the Causes of Low Water Pressure?

This is the million-dollar question. While there can be a single root cause, many times pressure issues are a result of several compounding factors. When it comes to finding the source, here are the steps to tracking down the causes of low water pressure.

Test the Water Pressure

Before contacting your municipal water provider, take a moment to test the pressure yourself. There are several devices you can buy (that cost less than $10) to help you do this. The readout will be in PSI, which represents the pounds of water pressure per square inch.
Normal water pressure is anywhere from 30 to 80 PSI. Preferably, the pressure should be on the higher side, around 60 PSI, though 45 to 50 is acceptable. To get an accurate measurement, you should attach the gauge to a hose or faucet and turn on the water.

Talk to Your Neighbors

If the water pressure is discernibly low, there is a chance that it is a system-wide issue.

If that is the case, the odds are your neighbors are experiencing the same problem. Reaching out to one or two people can let you know whether or not there is an issue within your home or within the municipal water system as a whole.

neighbours talking about water problems

Remove Any Clogs

If you are on this step, the chances are that your neighbors did not have the same problem. That’s alright. The next course of action is the remove any clogs that may restrict the water flow.
One potential cause is the accumulation of mineral deposits in the pipes. Because the water has trace minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium, these elements can build up on the interior. Over time, the deposits can corrode the pipes or obstruct the water flow.
Toronto Drains Snaking
There are a couple of solutions, such as placing a plastic bag of vinegar over the show head or faucet. The goal is to let the spout soak overnight, which gives the vinegar time to breakdown the deposits. If this trick doesn’t work, it may be a sign of a more serious issue.
Some people recommend pouring a mixture of baking soda and vinegar into the clogged pipes. However, this approach is ideal for drainpipes, not the ones that bring water to and from the house. Additionally, if there is a severe clog, it may require you to replace a portion of the pipes.

Look for Leaks

Cracked or damaged pipes are a leading cause of low water pressure. Leaks divert vital water out of the pipes and compromise the piping system as a whole.
Troubleshooting cracks involves first finding the main water valve, which controls the water flow throughout the home.
Turn off the main water valve and all of the indoor faucets. Write down the number on your water meter and wait for approximately two hours. Next, reread the meter. If the figure is higher than before, there is probably a leak, and you should call a professional plumber.

How to Fix Low Water Pressure in House

The solutions to low water pressure will depend on the size and complexity of the problem. For instance, a single leak or deep-seated clog may require little more than a sealant or roto-rooter, respectively. Plumbers may also replace portions of a pipe with clogs. Some types, such as galvanized steel pipes, are more vulnerable to corrosion than their copper and plastic counterparts.
Many homes rely on a regulator, especially if they get their water from a public source. The regulator moderates the amount of water pressure. When the device starts to malfunction, you will experience weak water flow. You can reset or replace the device or let a professional handle the issue for you.
If there is a regional water problem, there another solution is a water pressure boost pump. This will counteract the gravity and distance that can prevent acceptable water pressure. As a rule of thumb, booster pumps cost a few hundred dollars, including the cost of installation.

Learn More

Every home is unique. Thus, homeowners require customized solutions to their water pressure problems. When you need a helping hand, MT Drains & Plumbing Ltd will be there. Discover why we are the leading low water pressure service in Concord by giving us a call today.

Paul S

Paul has more then 20 years in basement waterproofing and plumbing projects experience. Looking for an advice from an expert plumber? Make sure to read Paul's articles about residential waterproofing and plumbing projects in Toronto.

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