Good water pressure was once a luxury, but has become a necessity. After a long day of work, nothing feels quite like taking a hot shower or bath to relax. Having low water pressure is something we don’t really think of until something happens and we are left with a sad little drip on our head in the shower first thing in the morning, or after a long day.
Here’s what you can do to combat low water pressure and some advice on how to fix the problem, so you can get back to washing, cleaning, cooking, bathing and all the other wonderful activities good water pressure affords us.
Top Causes for Low Water Pressure
1. Clogged/Blocked Fixtures and Faucets
One of the main causes of low water pressure is from faucets or fixtures that are clogged by rust, limestone or other minerals. These clogs make it so water flow is impeded and ultimately stripped of its initial pressure. It can also reduce the quality of the water you are getting from your tap as well. Clogged aerators or screens on faucets are also a surefire way to lower your effective water pressure
How to Fix: To unclog either faucets or fixtures, you can attempt to remove and clean the affected parts and soak them in de-mineralizing compounds. If you are unable to fix the issue this way, it may be time to consider calling a plumbing professional.
2. Valve Issues
There are two main shut-off valves that control the water flow in your home: one is at your meter and one is in your home. If either one of these valves is partially or fully turned off, it can cause your water pressure to decrease. The reason may be that when the water was turned off last time, it wasn’t turned all the way on again. Valves can be finicky, so double check each to make sure.
How to Fix: Check the valve at your water meter first and see if it’s all the way ON. Keep in mind that sometimes city workers are the only ones who have full access to your outside meter, but you should still be able to at least see the valve’s position. Call the city if it has been turned partially or fully off. Next, check your home valve and turn on all the way if it is not. Make sure to work the valve back and forth to turn on and it should begin to pressurize again. Never force the valve.
3. Corroded Plumbing
Clogged pipes or fixtures is one thing, but finding out your plumbing is corroded is another thing entirely. While sometimes you can get away with one or two pipes being replaced, with extensive corrosion, you will need to redo your entire home’s plumbing system. Steel pipes have a finite lifespan of between 20-50 years, and brass/copper/iron pipes can be expected to last between 40-80 years. Many homes are older and have been remodeled to be sold, but, a lot of times piping is left as-is since it can be quite pricey to redo the entire home’s plumbing.
How to Fix: Replace the pipes or the piping system that is corroded. Make sure to use modern materials that are highly durable so you won’t have to worry about this issue again. You may also wish to install a water softener to help sediment from building up as well.
4. Leak in Water Main
If your water bill is going up, but you aren’t using any more water than normal, you could be experiencing a leaky water main.
How to FIx: Call your city’s water department and have them come and check out the line ASAP.
5. Leak in House Plumbing
A big thing to look out for if you have low pressure and some of the easier fixes aren’t at fault, the cause could be leaky plumbing in your house. This is very important to rule out early on, so make sure you are keeping an eye out for swollen wood, musty smell, or drips in your home.
To Fix: Turn your water off and call a plumber ASAP.
Hard Water Clogging Up Your Pipes?
Independent Water Service can recommend and install the right water filtration system for your specific needs. We offer free water analysis and help you choose which system works for you. Our free water analysis checks for softness, impurities and other factors that may affect your household or business’ water. We offer systems for both residential and commercial spaces.
We proudly serve Yakima and Kittitas Counties and have been your local trusted water service since 1986. Call to schedule your free water analysis today!