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Improve water pressure at home

Fix-it: Low water pressure in your home can be fixed — sometimes it’s a major job, sometimes it’s an

Posted: September 10, 2010 10:51 p.m.
Updated: September 11, 2010 4:55 a.m.
 

For those who have turned on a faucet to find a trickle or bathed under something more like a drip sprinkler than a shower, water pressure might be the culprit.

Inadequate water pressure can be a nuisance. Remedying it could take a quick fix or a major overhaul.

There are many reasons for low water pressure. Diagnosing the problem is the key to fixing it. Here are some causes to consider.

- Rural areas that rely on well water may have less pounds of water pressure than in suburban or city areas.

-Water softeners or filters in homes can reduce water pressure.

-Multi-level homes could experience a drop in water pressure in upstairs bathrooms.
That’s because, for every 2.31 feet of vertical climb in a water line, a homeowner will lose a pound of water pressure.

Water that originates in the basement and must travel upstairs could decrease by 12 pounds of pressure by the time it arrives at a third-floor bathroom.

- Clogged pipes or fixtures can reduce water pressure. Pipes that are also too small in diameter to meet the house water needs could also be to blame.

- Water restrictors in showerheads and other fixtures can reduce water flow in an effort to conserve the natural resource.

Homeowners can insert a gauge at the main water supply of the house to determine the pressure of the water at the source.

This will help determine if the problem lies outside of the home or inside.

Some water pressure issues have easy fixes.

Simply cleaning the screen on faucets or showerheads can remove debris and improve water flow.

Purchasing fixtures that do not additionally restrict water flow can also alleviate the problem.

Individuals who live in rural areas or at the end of city water systems may want to consider the addition of a water pressure tank that will provide extra water supply in high-demand situations.

While it won’t improve water pressure, it will alleviate water volume problems when in need.

A booster pump installed on a system will actually increase water pressure by several pounds.

Homeowners may have to contend with fluctuating water pressure, but it may be a small price to pay for extra water pressure.

Some homes have various valves installed in the plumbing system so that a leak or problem can be isolated and turned off.

However, the wrong types of valves can impede water pressure.

It can be well worth the expense to have a professional plumber to investigate home water pressure issues and recommend solutions.

It may be simpler than one thinks.

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