Water Pressure drops when using any major water

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Symth

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My family moved into a new house 6 months ago. Our water pressure varies between good to low (compared to consistent city water) but when using any major appliance (dishwasher, laundry, shower, garden hose) the water slows to nothing at any other faucet. I've read through lots of other similar questions here and I'm guessing I need to change the pressure on my pump or put in a new pump but would love some advice on what I should try.

We've got a rain gutter fed water cistern next to the house with a 1/2HP Water Ace RTS5 shallow well pump
This goes to a 20gal pressure tank, then whole house Aquasana Rhino water filter with UV

The pump cycles normally and everything seems to be operating correctly, we just don't have enough pressure to do 2 things at once.

Is this normal for a cistern/pump or is there something I can do?
My pump says it can be adjusted to a higher pressure. My system doesn't have a gauge built in so I have not checked this yet but knowing the previous owners, I would speculate that my pump is set at the default pressure. If I'm adjusting it, what should I aim for?
Do I need a bigger pump or a bigger pressure tank?
Is there something else I should try?

Thanks!
 

Valveman

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Default is 30/50. Specs say that pump has a max pressure of 65 PSI, so you could turn it up to 40/60. However, the higher pressure the less volume the pump will produce. At 60 PSI it won't produce enough to run a 3 GPM shower. A larger tank just makes the pressure stay on the low side for longer.

It is your water system. You can have as much pressure and volume as you want, you just have to make it happen. You will lose about 10 PSI going through the filters, even when they are clean. A 2 story house will lose another 10 PSI going to the upper floor. This requires starting with 20 PSI more than you need. Letting the pump cycle on and off, even at 50/70, means seeing varying pressure, which on the upper floor would be constantly changing between 30 and 50.

Using a larger pump and making it supply 60 PSI constant pressure, would deliver strong pressure, even on the upper floor. A 50/70 switch would make it possible to set the Cycle Stop Valve to hold a strong constant 60 PSI. A larger HP pump would allow the CSV to maintain 60 PSI even when the volume increased like when using several showers at the same time. With something like a J15S pump and a PK1A10 you would no longer even need soap in the shower. Lol!

Jet pump and PK1A.jpeg
 

Reach4

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I presume you have a drain valve near the connection to the pressure tank. You can attach a garden hose thread (often abbreviated GHT/GH) pressure gauge, and watch. You can also attach that gauge to a laundry tap or drain valve on the water heater. The point is, is the problem due to a pressure drop after the pump, or is the pump limiting you.

There is a good chance that the problem is mostly a partially clogged filter, or that the filter is so tight that it drops a lot of pressure when you put 5 gpm thru it. A UV treatment needs a 5 micron filter before it, so that the bugs cannot hide in the shadow of particles. That filter cartridge will need changing periodically.
 

Symth

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I presume you have a drain valve near the connection to the pressure tank. You can attach a garden hose thread (often abbreviated GHT/GH) pressure gauge, and watch. You can also attach that gauge to a laundry tap or drain valve on the water heater. The point is, is the problem due to a pressure drop after the pump, or is the pump limiting you.

There is a good chance that the problem is mostly a partially clogged filter, or that the filter is so tight that it drops a lot of pressure when you put 5 gpm thru it. A UV treatment needs a 5 micron filter before it, so that the bugs cannot hide in the shadow of particles. That filter cartridge will need changing periodically.
I'll throw a pressure gauge on this week and check. I do change the filters regularly but we have this issue regardless of where we are in the life cycle of the filters.

Thank you!
 

Symth

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Default is 30/50. Specs say that pump has a max pressure of 65 PSI, so you could turn it up to 40/60. However, the higher pressure the less volume the pump will produce. At 60 PSI it won't produce enough to run a 3 GPM shower. A larger tank just makes the pressure stay on the low side for longer.

It is your water system. You can have as much pressure and volume as you want, you just have to make it happen. You will lose about 10 PSI going through the filters, even when they are clean. A 2 story house will lose another 10 PSI going to the upper floor. This requires starting with 20 PSI more than you need. Letting the pump cycle on and off, even at 50/70, means seeing varying pressure, which on the upper floor would be constantly changing between 30 and 50.

Using a larger pump and making it supply 60 PSI constant pressure, would deliver strong pressure, even on the upper floor. A 50/70 switch would make it possible to set the Cycle Stop Valve to hold a strong constant 60 PSI. A larger HP pump would allow the CSV to maintain 60 PSI even when the volume increased like when using several showers at the same time. With something like a J15S pump and a PK1A10 you would no longer even need soap in the shower. Lol!

View attachment 87429
No soap! Ha!

Having a consistent 60psi sounds great however.

Is the J15S pump you'd recommend? supremewatersales.com seems to have the best price but reviews of them seem a little sketchy. Is there someone on the forum who sells this or is there a reputable seller?
Can I use my existing pressure tank with a CSV1A, and the 40/60 mechanical pressure switch? Or should I get the heavy duty switch?

My house is a ranch with the pump between the upper and lower level so I know we get some pressure drop from the distance water is moving but there shouldn't be a ton.

Anything else I should add to my system besides a pressure gauge?

Photo of my current system (Aquasana filter is outside of the crawlspace)
WaterPump System.jpg
 

WorthFlorida

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I'm assuming it is from your cistern. It's only a 3/4" copper line on the suction side, might be 1/2" copper, compared to the output side, from the shutoff to the union.

When you say, a new home six months ago, this is a older home, not newly built?
 
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Symth

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I'm assuming it is from your cistern. It's only a 3/4" copper line on the suction side, might be 1/2" copper, compared to the output side, from the shutoff to the union.

When you say, a new home six months ago, this is a older home, not newly built?
Sorry, new to me. Built in 1964.
 

Symth

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I'm assuming it is from your cistern. It's only a 3/4" copper line on the suction side, might be 1/2" copper, compared to the output side, from the shutoff to the union.

When you say, a new home six months ago, this is a older home, not newly built?
Do I need a bigger incoming line? Especially if I'm going to put in a 1.5HP pump?
 

Valveman

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No soap! Ha!

Having a consistent 60psi sounds great however.

Is the J15S pump you'd recommend? supremewatersales.com seems to have the best price but reviews of them seem a little sketchy. Is there someone on the forum who sells this or is there a reputable seller?
Can I use my existing pressure tank with a CSV1A, and the 40/60 mechanical pressure switch? Or should I get the heavy duty switch?

My house is a ranch with the pump between the upper and lower level so I know we get some pressure drop from the distance water is moving but there shouldn't be a ton.

Anything else I should add to my system besides a pressure gauge?

Photo of my current system (Aquasana filter is outside of the crawlspace)
View attachment 87437
Might try Locke well and pump. Yes you can use the CSV1A with the tank and switch you have. The line size should be large enough as with a CSV the pump is only delivering the amount of water being used, not the max amount the pump can supply.
 

Reach4

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Anything else I should add to my system besides a pressure gauge?

Pressure switch. Your new proposed pump does not come with a pressure switch.

Going to 3x as many HP seems like a lot.
 
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