Does the water trickle weakly from your kitchen faucet? Is the showerhead spray weaker than you would like? These are signs of low water pressure, which may affect your quality of life. When only one faucet has a problem, you can usually fix it by cleaning the aerator or addressing other causes specific to that fixture. However, widespread water pressure issues indicate a different problem. Here are six potential causes to consider and how to fix them.
- Partially closed water meter valve: The street-facing valve near the water meter belongs to the city and should not be tampered with. However, if water company personnel recently worked on your plumbing system, they may have forgotten to fully open the water meter valve. To avoid causing trouble, your best bet is to ask your water company to send a professional who can make the necessary adjustment.
- Partially closed main shutoff valve: The house-facing valve near the water meter is your main water shutoff valve. Check whether this valve is fully open if your water pressure mysterious dropped after a recent plumbing repair. You can adjust this without help from water company personnel.
- Failing pressure regulator: A pressure regulator is a control valve found in some homes that reduces input pressure to avoid damaging the pipes. A failing regulator can cause a sudden spike or plunge in water pressure. Hire a plumber to test and replace the regulator if needed.
- Leaking pipes: Breaks or loose joints in the supply line divert some of the water elsewhere, thus reducing the pressure. To test for this, first check your water meter reading. If it changes after two hours of not using any water fixtures or appliances, you know you have a leak. A plumber can perform leak detection and repair to solve the problem.
- Corroded steel pipes: This is the most expensive reason for low water pressure in a house. When old steel pipes corrode on the inside, water flow becomes significantly restricted. The problem occurs over decades, so signs of low water pressure may develop gradually. Repiping your house is the only solution.
- Multiple fixtures in use: You may notice low pressure when several water activities occur simultaneously. If the dishwasher and washing machine are going, the sprinkler system is running, and someone is taking a shower, it’s normal to experience low pressure. To prevent this, adjust your water usage patterns to avoid using too many appliances and fixtures at once.
If you need help finding or fixing the cause of low water pressure in your house, turn to Mike Counsil Plumbing. Our dedicated team provides high-quality, cost-effective plumbing solutions for homeowners in San Jose and the surrounding South Bay area. As a family-owned company, we believe in treating our customers and employees like family, and it shows in the work we do every day. For help with any pipe problem, don’t hesitate to call 408-916-1226 or contact us online to schedule a visit 24 hours a day.