Whether you have city water or draw from a private well, a lack of adequate water pressure is one of the most common household plumbing problems. There are some reasons why a home might see a drop in water pressure, from old pipes to an inadequate amount of water flowing from your well. The solution varies depending on the cause of the problem, but in many cases, a constant pressure system can boost your water pressure to the levels you are looking for.
A private water well is a great source of clean, great-tasting water for your home, especially in New England. But well water may not deliver the kind of water pressure you would like. It’s not uncommon for homes with conventional private wells to have low water pressure. The cause might be low water levels in the well because of drought, increased water usage, a home addition that draws more water, or a new irrigation system. No matter what the cause, fluctuating water pressure can be frustrating an inefficient.
Municipal water systems deliver water to individual homes and businesses by transferring water through pipes that run throughout the city. The source of this water could be from a water tower, a reservoir or a well. Water pressure on a municipal system is usually very reliable. However, it can vary if there is old infrastructure or if the home is located a long distance from the main water line.
Private well systems are powered by a well pump, which is designed to run at a certain pressure per square inch (psi), typically 40 to 60 psi. The pump is set to a certain speed which is meant to keep the pressure in your tank constant. When the pressure drops below the pump’s set psi, the pump starts to pump water until the pressure reaches 60 psi and shuts off. Turning on faucets, running a dishwasher or flushing a toilet all cause a pressure drop. Using multiple water sources at the same time, like taking a shower and washing clothes, can cause the flow in the shower to drop or sputter because the pump cannot keep up with the water demands.
How a constant pressure system can help
When water demand inside the home goes up, a constant pressure system can keep the pressure from dropping. A sensor detects water pressure and sends a signal to the controller to regulate the speed of the pump. Instead of turning the pump on and off when pressure tank signals a drop below a certain psi, a constant pressure system keeps the tank at one pressure level. The constant pressure continues even when water is being used in multiple places.
Homeowners also like having a constant pressure pump because it runs only when needed and does not require the installation of large water tanks in the home. When water demand increases, pump speed increases, and when water demand decreases, the pump speed will decrease. They save homeowners energy while keeping the water flowing.
Consider other sources of water pressure problems
Water pressure isn’t the only reason water flow is dropping in your home. Is the water meter set correctly? Has the main shut-off valve to your municipal water system been adjusted during construction or maintenance work? Is your system’s pressure regulator set correctly? Could your home’s plumbing be old enough to suffer from clogging due to sediment or mineral build-up?