Low water pressure in your home is a problem that’s tough to ignore. It can be detrimental to your comfort and convenience in several important areas of your life. Whether you’re taking a shower, washing your hands, washing dishes, or even doing chores, it’s imperative that you can rely on a consistent stream of water. When you feel that water flow weaken by even a small margin, it can quickly put a damper on your day or waste your time. The fact that it isn’t easy to diagnose makes it even more frustrating. There are multiple potential causes, and it usually takes some troubleshooting or professional assistance to narrow it down. However, the more you learn about the problem, the better equipped you’ll be to deal with it.
Water Supplier Causes
In many cases, your low water pressure isn’t being caused by anything within your home. There are several possibilities, completely out of your control, that an outside source may be negatively impacting your home’s water flow. One possibility is that your water supplier is experiencing a problem. In that case, the water pressure will already be affected before it even reaches your plumbing. If you think this might be happening, check with some of your neighbors to see if they’re having water pressure issues as well. If it turns out that they are, you can contact your water supplier to ensure that they’re at least aware of the issue, and they may be able to give you more information on the problem.
If you’re dealing with inexplicable low water pressure, it’s also possible that your city has changed its water regulations. When this happens, your water supplier has no choice in the matter, and there’s not much you can do about it. However, one thing you can do is have a water pressure boosting system installed to counteract the change. With one of these systems, your water pressure may end up even stronger than it previously was. If you purchase one, make sure to have a professional plumber install it for you.
Many homeowners have shared plumbing with their neighbors and don’t even realize it. It varies from neighborhood to neighborhood, but you may be sharing your water supply with one or more homes. With that kind of setup, your water pressure at any given time may be affected by what your neighbors are doing. If you take a shower at the same time that they’re washing their car, for example, both parties will probably notice a weakened flow.
There are a couple of ways you can go about dealing with this; if you have the patience, you can try to adjust your schedule so that you’re using water when they aren’t. Most likely, you’ll notice a pattern with when your water pressure is the weakest, and you can try to work around those times. Alternatively, if you can’t stand it, you can hire reputable plumbers to alter your setup. The job won’t be cheap, but your water pressure should be more consistent once your supply isn’t being divided.
There are two primary valves controlling your home’s water intake: the main house shutoff valve and the water meter valve. Either one of them could be the root of your low water pressure. The odds are that you haven’t touched your main house shutoff valve unless you’ve experienced some kind of plumbing emergency. However, if you did recently deal with a burst or leaking pipe and had to close that valve, it could be that you didn’t open it all the way afterward. If the valve isn’t 100% open, less water can flow through at once, and your water pressure will be weaker. The main house shutoff valve is found wherever the main city water supply pipe enters your home; locate it and make sure its handle is turned all the way counter-clockwise.
Alternatively, if you’ve had significant work done on your house recently, there could be an issue with your water meter valve. The water meter valve belongs to the water company, and it’s usually in a hard-to-reach place. Sometimes, this valve is located underground. Whoever recently worked on your home might have needed to access this valve, and they may have neglected to reopen it all the way. Call your water company if you think the water meter valve is the culprit for your low water pressure, and the company will send someone to check it out.
Problems With Your Pipes
If your house is the only one having water pressure problems and you aren’t sharing a water supply nor is it the valves, then it’s most likely an issue with your piping. One common possibility is that your pipes are clogged in one or more places. Many homeowners think that clogs only materialize near drains, but that’s not accurate. Clogs can show up well into the depths of your plumbing, and all it takes is a small one to impact your water pressure. These clogs are especially common if you live in a hard-water area without a water softening system installed. That hard water will frequently leave residue, such as calcium and magnesium, behind in your pipes. You shouldn’t try to fix clogged pipes on your own; hire a reputable plumber instead. If you’re in the Boston, MA area, our skilled team at Blue Bear Plumbing can handle it for you.
It could be that instead of being clogged, your pipes are leaking. If you’re dealing with a major leak, you should find evidence in the form of puddles or flooding in your basement or foundation. Smaller leaks won’t be as obvious, but they can still negatively affect your water pressure. If your home’s layout allows you access to your pipes, inspect the area for any wet spots or small pools.
If you find any leaks, your first move should always be to schedule a plumbing appointment as soon as possible. To keep the leak(s) under control in the meantime, you can probably apply a temporary fix; you’ll just need a few things from the hardware store. First, shut off your home’s water supply, and dry the outside of the affected pipes with a towel. Next, wrap a rubber patch around the leak. Finally, use electrical tape and a plumbing repair clamp to seal it tightly. Remember, this solution is only effective for minimizing damage temporarily until you have a professional plumber arrive. Also, keep in mind that water pressure problems are frequently the result of multiple leaks, so don’t assume that the first one you find is the only one present.
How We Can Help
At Blue Bear Plumbing, we’re proud to offer reliable plumbing, heating, and air conditioning services to Boston and the surrounding areas. With our years of plumbing and HVAC experience, top-quality equipment, and friendly service team, we’ll surely go above and beyond your expectations. Whether you need residential, commercial, or municipal services, we’ll deliver you the high-quality solutions that you need. To learn more about what we offer, contact us at Blue Bear Plumbing today!