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Thread: main line pressure regulator location?

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Handiman's Avatar
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    Default main line pressure regulator location?

    Hello, I recently pressure tested my lines at the faucet nearest the main line from the street. The pressure on the ORBIT gauge reads 45PSI. Isn't the average pressure supposed to be between 55-70PSI.

    Problem is, I can't find the damn pressure regulator anywhere starting at where the line comes in at the street (meter). The irrigation valves look to be the first contact with the water line. Nowhere near the water heater either. Where is the pressure regulator usually located? Local water authority says the pressure is between 70-100PSI in my neighborhood, so there must be regulator somewhere on the line, but where?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Journeyman & Gas Fitter Doherty Plumbing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Handiman View Post
    Hello, I recently pressure tested my lines at the faucet nearest the main line from the street. The pressure on the ORBIT gauge reads 45PSI. Isn't the average pressure supposed to be between 55-70PSI.

    Problem is, I can't find the damn pressure regulator anywhere starting at where the line comes in at the street (meter). The irrigation valves look to be the first contact with the water line. Nowhere near the water heater either. Where is the pressure regulator usually located? Local water authority says the pressure is between 70-100PSI in my neighborhood, so there must be regulator somewhere on the line, but where?

    Thanks
    Your PRV is *usually* located fairly close to your main shutoff valve inside the house. It could be hidden behind paneling or something.

    Sometimes the PRV is located in the ground outside close to the street.

    Some neighbourhoods have a main line PRV that feeds the whole neighbourhood. But this is quite rare.

  3. #3
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Are you sure you even have a PRV? It could just be your pressure is low. This could especially be true if you live on a hill or at the end of the line. Does your gauge have a peak reading needle? If so, leave it there overnight and note the high reading (usually late night/early morning when there's little use in the whole system).
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  4. #4
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    If you have a PRV, it should be after the irrigation system branches off the main line. The only things on the irrigation line would be the back flow device and the zone valves. 45 PSI is fine for you house pressure. It could be higher, but everything will work just fine with 45 PSI. A PRV should be located just after the main line enters the house and before the main shutoff valve and be in easy access for adjustment and replacing. Operative word here is "should". Sometimes things are not done as they should be. I suspect you do not have a PRV and the city is not giving you accurate numbers about what pressure their main line actually has. It may be that once that line carried 55 to 70 PSI but no longer does. If that was the pressure when the house was originally plumbed, it is most likely that no PRV was deemed necessary as while 70 PSI is a bit high, it is not excessively high.

  5. #5
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    IT would be WHEREVER the installer wanted to put it. I have seen them buried underground 1', 2', and more, from the water meter. They are also installed near the house or in the exposed piping inside the house. I have even found multiple PRVs when an installer did not know there was an existing one which had failed so he installed another one nearer to the meter.

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