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Thread: Low Water Pressure

  1. #1

    Default Low Water Pressure

    Hi,

    I've bought my first house this summer. A 1959 ranch. Much to my disappointment, I can not demand water from more than one system(?) at a time. It has been a fun juggling act every day after work -- water the lawn, do dishes, or laundry? Someone needs to take a shower? I have to stop doing whatever chore or they will just have to wait. Doing any of these chores -- toilet won't flush very well. I can do more than two things -- just the water will run slower -- or the lawn sprinkler will water only a 2 sq feet vs 20.

    Can this problem be fixed? I can live around it but it isn't very fun, especially when all the chores that demand water have to wait until after work.

    Thanks in advance for your advice.
    Kathy

  2. #2
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Default

    My first advice is to have a qualified plumber evaluate the problem. There are a couple of possible causes that come to mind. First, the source of the water supply. Well? City? In other words, is there adaquate water available from the supply. Then, what size is the supply line from the meter? Could be too small. Since it appears that the short supply is throughout the entire house/yard, it would indicate the problem is before the water reaches the house. Perhaps a bad or partly closed valve at the meter. We could speculate on all of these things, but a plumber can find the problem quickly and recommend a solution.

  3. #3
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default pressure

    As Gary stated, your symptoms could be caused by many possibilities, none of which we can state definitely as the problem. It could be as simple as opening a valve, which I had to do last week, to replacing your piping system, but only a plumber checking your property can tell for sure.

  4. #4
    General Contractor Carpenter toolaholic's Avatar
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    Default where do you live?

    if you have a concrete slab ,there could be a break that would be obvious in a full basement, but not under concrete! if pipes are galvanized,they could be loaded ,and blocked with rust.

    go back to your realitor, was this situation disclosed to you before sale?

    if not, call a real estate lawer ,after a written plumbing report.

    good luck

  5. #5

    Default

    Thanks. Sounds a little more involved than I hoped.

    No, the sellers did not disclose low water pressure. After the sell of the house, since I've been in contact with the sellers, I mentioned it. She just said, "Oh, I guess because I stay home all day, I can do my chores all day and I never noticed." The inspector, whom I was not very happy with (next time I'll make sure I pay for the $500 inspector -- not the $200 flip a light and says it works kinda guy), all he did was run the shower and flushed the toilet at the same time. The toilet didn't flush well and he said "oh, that can be fixed by making an adjustment inside the tank". If I had trouble doing even one chore, I could see making a case of the situtation.

    I'm on a slab and city water. The neighbors across the street have complained of the same thing. I figured it would have to do with the age of the pipes and maybe built up stuff over time. I know a plumber could pin-point the problem. Of course, I have to hope I find an honest plumber -- being a single lady -- I tend to run into a lot of not so honest guys. Just having some kind of idea about what to expect has been helpful. But, more importantly -- gotta get the sewer line cleared first !!

    Thanks,
    Kathy

  6. #6
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Default

    If the neighbors are having the same problem, then you should also check with the city to see what pressure you main is supposed to be carrying. If you want to do some troubleshooting before getting a plumber, get an inexpensive pressure gauge that has a hose bib fitting. Put it on a faucet and see what it reads. Then open another faucet and check the psi. Minimum pressure is somewhere around 40 psi and up to 60 psi. Your neighbor's low pressure and yours may or may not be related, but it another possibility to check. I still doubt if the problem is inside the house, but rather between the house and meter (or low city pressure) You mentioned you need to get the sewer opened. Whatever you do, don't use chemicals. They don't work, and they are dangerous to the plumber who you will eventually have to work on the drain.

  7. #7
    General Contractor Carpenter toolaholic's Avatar
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    Default suggestions to find a good honest plumber

    the neighbors that have lived in their houses a long time are a valuable asset. they know who has been kind and fair to them over the years. when you keep hearing the same name come up,BINGO, that,s whom you want for a plumber. i have 3 daughters i,ll adopt 1 more Kathy, that,ll make 2 Kathys
    good luck, tool

  8. #8

    Default

    Hmm... talking about water pressure gages. I kind of recall the inspector dragging out some gages in the kitchen. Hmm.. but I was so entranced standing in my pretty and very first house.. I didn't pay 100% attention to him... just walked around like a puppy going.. yeah yeah ok no big deal.... I can fix that... So, is this why you're saying this should have come out during inspection? This is how the inspector would check the pressure?
    I know when more than one faucet runs, I don't see the problem (or what I feel like is a problem). I have an issue with trying to water the lawn, which has to happen very frequently in Texas at the same time of trying to do laundry, dishwasher, shower. Water will pull on the second demand but just draws a alot away from the first.

    Is this even a problem or is this just me wanting to live in a perfect world?

    Oh, thanks for adopting me.. I need all the help I can muster. To bad you can't watch over my shoulder while I learn to do the work myself ?!

  9. #9
    General Contractor Carpenter toolaholic's Avatar
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    Default kathy

    the water pressure guage is avaible at h d it screws on to the outsidehose bibb, not on the kitchen faucet. you do need a plumber!

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