Low Water Pressure In House

I would appreciate any advice anyone could give me on this subject. I live in an area that is known for good water and good water pressure. I moved into the house which is about 10-15 years old, about 2 years ago. The water pressure was poor at the time. I don't recall all the particulars that led me to it, but I replaced a device that goes between the water main and the house. It regulates pressure and I think I couldn't make it give me any more pressure. This may have helped a little with the poor water pressure but only a little, if that.
Recently I tested the water pressure and it was between 15-20 (PSI I think). This seems low to me.
To confuse things a bit more, I think that when I replaced the pressure regulator between the house and the water main, the pressure may have shown 60psi, but the pressure in the house was still very poor.
At my old house when I would wash cloths and put the washer on HOT water, it filled up the washer fairly slowly but when I put it on warm (thus getting hot and cold) it really blasted out. At my current house when I select WARM it dribbles out like the hot use to and takes forever to fill up the washing machine.
I don't know if it gives any idea of flow rate, but when I wrote this at 4am it took me 8 seconds to fill up a gallon milk jug, but it usually takes about 10-11 seconds during the day.
I doubt I've explained this well enough, or given enough information, or the right information for anyone to diagnose this problem. However it is my hope that someone could tell me what different things may be wrong and where I should start to diagnose and fix the problem.
Many thanks.
Irving
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theres pressure, and theres flow.
they are two different items.
begin by caling your water company, hopefully they will come out for free and check.
I had a similar poroblem once, finally traced to a piece of rust stuck in my main shut off valve..........
it clogged things so flow was poor.........
last year my bathroom had a similiar problem, and i had a terrible problem closing the ball valve to the bath hot line to check the faucets.
had to use a pipe over the end of the ball valve lever.......
faucets looked fine, but after turning everything back on it was good flow again.........
found some grit in tub
conclusion......... something jammed at ball valve, i disloged it when closing ball valve, after turning things back on the remnnts of the junk exited in the tub which was set at full on.....
call water company first, and ask neighbors hw theirs is before calling
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Irving Drinkwine wrote: ...

...
Need to start there again and reverify you have adequate main pressure. If so, then there's a blockage somewhere in your line. Perhaps there's another regulator that has failed nearly closed that you're unaware of is one possibility (in one house of mine, they buried one in the feed line where it comes into the house but outside underground, not where it was readily accessible. :( )
--
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Did yours look similar to this?
http://s27.photobucket.com/albums/c197/ancientangler/?action=view&current=PressureRegulator_02.jpg
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JoeSpareBedroom wrote:
...

...
Pretty much, why?
--
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Just curious. I'd never heard of them being installed underground. But, there are lots of things I'd never heard of until I saw what the previous owners did to this house. :)
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JoeSpareBedroom wrote:

Aren't _supposed_ to be, of course. The builder of this particular house was a heavy equipment operator who decided in a boom period that the real money was in general contracting. Unfortunately, knowing how to grade the lot and do septic system drainfields, etc., wasn't all there was to housebuilding. It was a solid-enough house, just full of "stuff" like this.
This one failed completely closed the day after we brought the new baby home from the hospital while in the midst of a period of continuous rain for several days. It was, at least, late enough in spring that it wasn't terribly cold, but it was a real tough time--first, finding the da'ed thing (the guy didn't know where it was either--he 'thought' it was at the meter end--
--
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The prior owner here used 4 million feet of extra wire to mount the doorbell transformer in a 1st floor closet, at the opposite end of the house from both entry doors and the doorbell itself. The wire came up from the cellar, and originated in a perfect place where he could've mounted it down there. The only possible explanation I can imagine would be "I don't transformers. I want 'em where I can keep an eye on 'em."
A friend of mine had her furnace replaced. When the installer turned it on, he found the air flow all screwy. Reason: Prior owners had stuffed the cold air returns with fiberglass insulation.
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type: "I don't TRUST transformers..."
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Irving Drinkwine wrote:

Yes, very low. 40 psi as a bare minimum.
As others said, contact the water supplier.
Another helpful avenue is to ask neighbors if they suffer the same low pressure.
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On Mon, 09 Jun 2008 07:21:06 -0400, Irving Drinkwine

A problem that usually occurs in homes older than yours, but still a possibility:
There may be a length of steel or iron pipe after the meter that has rusted and built up sediment and rust until it restricts or even stops flow. This happens gradually. I've seen cases where the sinks in the house had only a trickle coming out. The homeowners feared a major replumbing of the house, so they let it get worse and worse until they simply HAD to have it fixed.
If there is so much as a steel or iron elbow after the meter, I would remove and inspect. Copper pipes don't do this. It's usually a matter of a few elbows and less than 10 feet of ferrous pipe involved before the rest of the house plumbing, which is copper beyond that point.
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1. You need to find out what the pressure is as supplied to the house. If it is above 40 psi (50 or higher is better), then the problem is inside your house, if it is _not_ above 40 psi, it is the water systems problem.
2. A pressure regulator only reduces pressure, it cannot increase it above whatever pressure is available at the input.
3. Assuming the problem is inside the house. a. a partially plugged valve or pipe. b. problems with a water filter or treatment system if you have one - that is one of the most common causes of low house pressure.
Harry K
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On Mon, 09 Jun 2008 07:21:06 -0400, Irving Drinkwine

A problem that usually occurs in homes older than yours, but still a possibility:
There may be a length of steel or iron pipe after the meter that has rusted and built up sediment and rust until it restricts or even stops flow. This happens gradually. I've seen cases where the sinks in the house had only a trickle coming out. The homeowners feared a major replumbing of the house, so they let it get worse and worse until they simply HAD to have it fixed.
If there is so much as a steel or iron elbow after the meter, I would remove and inspect. Copper pipes don't do this. It's usually a matter of a few elbows and less than 10 feet of ferrous pipe involved before the rest of the house plumbing, which is copper beyond that point.
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If you believe the regulator is fine then you may have a restricted line that leads to your house. A plumber can connect a line at the water inlet of the house a backfeed air pressure into the line. At that point he instantaneously releases the air and the air hammers crud loose from the walls of the pipe. He may have to do this several times. It may rupture a corroded pipe, but in most cases you will be able to flush the crud away and get your flow back.
Do you use a water filter or a water softener? You should. If the house has been without this for years then good luck because most of the inside the house plumbing will be restricted.
How did you measure pressure? statically (during no flow) or dynamically (during flow)
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What you should do is contact local water CO. See if they can check the pressure before the meter ( if you have a meter) Basically check the feed from the water Co.first. Now hears were most people get all mixed up Pressure & volume (flow) They are two completely deferent things. I'll try to give you a simple explanation If you have a 1/2" pipe with 20 psi and 6" pipe with 20 Psi witch will give you more water? Even if you have an obstruction ( corroded pipe) if there is flow you will achieve the same pressure if the pipe had no obstruction. When you tested you Water pres. did you leave the gauge sit for awhile to see if the pressure raises? Now you talked about adjusting you PRV valve ( pres. Reducing valve) The only thing it will do is reduce pressure, It regulates the water pressure from the city or else toilets will run facets will drip. But reading you description sounds like you might have some sort of restriction. But first check your city pres. Try leaving that pressure gauge sit for a while If the pressure comes up I would suspect a blockage some were. Another question was this a sudden problem ? that might indicate a broken pipe might be underground look for wet spots in the yard were the main feed is. Any that's a plumbers take on it.
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Yes, pressure and volume are two different measurements, but they are related. If you have a restriction in a pipe and measure pressure further down the pipe where it is not restricted, it will show lower pressure. The reason is that there is less volume to keep the pipe completely filled and maintain the pressure. You could have, for example, 40 psi coming in at the street, and 20 psi at the kitchen sink due entirely to a partial blockage anywhere between the street and the sink.
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On Jun 10, 3:13am, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

Depends on how you measure it. Static pressure should show the same as whatever it is prior to the partial blockage. Dynamic is where the restriction effect shows up.
Harry K
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