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Aug 9, 2017

The Highs and Lows of Water Pressure

People love high water pressure but your house does not! While you enjoy watering you flowers from fifty feet away your plumbing fixtures are screaming for help. Plumbing manufacturers test and specify their products based on a maximum water pressure of 80 psi. If your water pressure is above that pipes start to make noises, faucets start to drip and toilets begin to operate without assistance.

The bad part about this scenario is these things mainly happen at night when you are asleep. Pressure builds in the municipality water system at night because there is a lot less water being used. That pressure then gets transferred to your home and causes the seals to weep in your faucets and toilets. Over time the high pressure will further weaken the seals until the drips or running toilets will occur during the day and get noticed.

Self Test

There is a simple test you can perform to find the water pressure to your home. Your local hardware store should offer a pressure gauge which connects right to your hose faucet. Try and find the one with a “tattle tale” dial on it so you can see what the maximum pressure goes to overnight. If you do leave the gauge on you hose faucet overnight DO NOT perform this test in freezing temperatures. Here in Bellingham we have tested water pressures up to 170 psi! Those who are on private wells are generally immune to these pressure problems but the water associations around Whatcom County can get up there in pressure too.

If your water pressure exceeds 80 psi then your homes pressure reducing valve has most likely failed or worst yet, you do not have a pressure reducing valve which leaves your home fully subject to whatever water pressure is from the city main! Give us a call and we can discuss a remedy for high pressure.

Long Soapy Process

The low water pressure is not so loved by homeowners. Plumbing code states that the minimum water pressure from a city or association water is 15 psi. I don’t know of many faucets that would be anything more than a dribble at that pressure and a shower would be a long soapy process. Some low water pressure areas around Whatcom County are parts of Sudden Valley and Everson but let’s face it, you low pressure people are fully aware of who you are!

There are several solutions to fix this problem, just give us a call (360) 734-6440 as we are here to help.

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Phone: 360-734-6440


Email: service@sullivanplumbing.net

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