Low water pressure could be a sign of a serious problem in your home or business, or it could just be a sign that a faucet needs replacing.
When you turn on the water and get less water coming out, you may realize it is time to do some investigating. Finding the cause and correcting it can give you peace of mind.
While there are some minor things you can check out yourself, it is always best to call a plumber to check out the rest.
In today’s busy world, we do not usually have the time to do our own plumbing repairs, but there are two simple tests you can do yourself to get an idea of what is happening.
- You can experience reduced pressure in your water faucets when the aerator is clogged. The aerator is the part on the tip of the faucet whose job is to mix air with the water to prevent splashing. Minerals and debris can sometimes clog it. Unscrew it and turn on the faucet.If you notice that the water pressure is back to normal, then you need to clean the aerator or replace it. You can clean it by soaking it in white vinegar and then scrubbing it with a soft bristle brush.
- Check the water pressure in all your faucets to see if the pressure is low with only the hot water. If that is the case, then the problem is likely your water heater, and you need to call the plumber to install a new one or diagnose and fix your current one.
There are many things that can cause low water pressure. Once you have checked all you can check, it is important to call a plumbing professional.
Potential Causes of Low Water Pressure
Debris in the Water
This is more common in homes or businesses that are on well water than in those on municipal water, but it can occur even in municipal water systems if there are leaks that allow debris to be sucked into the water.
The debris clogs up your pipes and must be flushed out by a professional who knows what water pressure to use to keep from damaging your pipes.
Mineral Deposit Buildup
Hard water contains a lot of lime and minerals. When water flows through pipes, over time these minerals tend to drop out of the water onto the insides of the pipes.
A buildup of these minerals will cause water pressure to diminish over time. A professional like Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Wilmington DE can install a water conditioning and softening system that will take care of this problem.
Water pipes are said to be good for approximately 20 years. Over time the joints where they are soldered can be stressed to where they develop leaks.
Tree roots can also pierce water pipes when they grow under a house and interfere with the water pipes.
Leaks can develop at faucets, where they are usually evident, or they can develop in out-of-sight areas that only a plumber would think to check.
According to the CDC, fluoridation of water systems does not cause water pipes to corrode. Causes of metal water pipe corrosion include the properties of the pipe itself, the soil that surrounds the pipe, the properties of the water itself, and stray electrical currents.
Water that is too acidic will definitely cause corrosion in pipes. Acidity in water, according to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, is caused by carbonic acid and carbon dioxide.
Corrosive water dissolves metal into the water, and over time small leaks form.
PRV – Pressure Reducing Valve and Shut-Off Valve
There are two valves that could interfere with your water pressure if they have been accidentally adjusted or need replacement or repairing.
The Pressure Reducing Valve by municipalities is used in homes and businesses to cut the pressure coming from municipal sources down to a level that will not burst your pipes.
The shut-off valve at the water meter can also affect your water pressure. If it has been turned even slightly, it can restrict the water flow in a home or business.
There are so many possible causes of low water pressure that it is important to have a professional like the folks at Benjamin Franklin Plumbing® of Wilmington DE check it out for you. Their prompt, professional service will offer you both solutions and peace of mind.