Once I purchased my first home, I realized that I needed to do my part in caring for my home appliances. In addition to reading the user manuals for my kitchen appliances and state-of-the-art plumbing system, I realized that I also needed to do a little research about HVAC. Because I had no experience with HVAC systems, I called out a professional to teach me a thing or two. It was fascinating to talk with him, and I was able to take notes about all kinds of important topics, such as maintenance, troubleshooting, and even shopping for a new system. This blog is all about understanding HVAC guidelines.
Water pressure is a particularly subjective aspect of home plumbing. Some people may enjoy high-pressure showers, while others prefer a gentler approach. Whatever your preference, there's no question that extremely low water pressure can be an issue. Low water pressure can make it difficult to shower and may even adversely affect your appliances.
However, it can sometimes be challenging to know whether the water pressure in your home is a serious concern. If you're worried that your home's water pressure might be too low, here are three signs that you may need to call a plumber.
1. You Can't Adjust Your Pressure
Start by checking if your home has a pressure regulator on the supply line. If you use municipal water, these regulators reduce the often high pressure from the city water to a more reasonable level. Typical regulators include an adjustment screw that allows you to increase or decrease the pressure entering your home.
Note that you want to keep your pressure around 60psi to protect your plumbing and appliances. If your regulator doesn't include a gauge to monitor pressure, you may want to consider contacting a plumber to perform this service. Likewise, if increasing the regulator doesn't improve your water pressure, you may need a plumber to investigate.
2. You're Noticing Problems at Multiple Fixtures
Low water pressure at one fixture can often indicate a restriction at that location, such as a clogged faucet aerator or mineral buildup in a showerhead. These problems are relatively minor and easy to correct, often without buying new parts. However, problems at multiple fixtures can indicate a more severe problem.
Pay special attention to how your fixtures behave when water runs at another location. For example, does the water pressure at your sink decrease while someone is taking a shower? These problems indicate a larger issue with the water pressure coming into your home and can be a good sign that it's time to call a plumber.
3. Appliances Take Too Long to Run
High-efficiency dishwashers and washing machines often take longer to run than older, lower-efficiency models, but they still rely on adequate water pressure. If your appliances take too long, check your user manuals for their expected run times. Significantly longer run times or poor performance may indicate a water pressure problem, especially if the issue is affecting multiple machines.
Running these appliances with low water pressure isn't just annoying, it can also stress the machines and cause premature failures. It's usually best to contact a plumber as soon as possible once you notice your water pressure issues affecting your appliances.
Contact a plumber to learn more.