Question regarding plumbing

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It sounds like the pressure in the city main has dropped again in your area... I would call the water people and ask them if they have changed the pressure in the area, if your neighbors are experiencing a similar issue then there could be a leak in one of the water mains in your area, if no neighbors are having the same problem than your specific water supply pipe could be leaking on your property if the city has not decreased the pressure...
You should have a water pressure gauge installed somewhere near your water meter if you do not have one currently installed...
~~ Evan
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Evan wrote:

That's something I'd have to call someone in for. I wouldn't mind having a plumber come out for something definitive, but I hate to pay for something that is going to be a seek and find game if there is anything left to be done that I could check or do myself. Back to your statement, I don't know how much a gauge at the meter would tell me as there is slightly over a quarter-mile of pipe coming up alongside the driveway along with a fairly steep incline.
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You can get a gauge that you can screw onto the drain valve of your water heater, an outside spigot, or a laundry sink faucet (basically it's a pressure gauge with a brass fitting on it to convert it to female garden hose thread) for not much cash at your local Big Box. Just have to be careful not to kick it while it's installed.
nate
nate
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On Thu, 2 Feb 2012 13:22:38 -0800 (PST), Evan

Is there a spec on how much FLOW they must provide at that pressure? A restricted pipe will provide exactly the same STATIC pressure as an unrestricted pipe, but the flow will drop off appreciably with any flow. (through the restricted pipe)
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On Feb 6, 11:40 pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

The FLOW or demand capacity is generally determined by the sizing of the line... It sounds like the OP's water supply line might be undersized for his location and the specific site conditions (top of a big hill, long pipe run from the street main) where a pipe sized for a normal house not located on a hill would be fine...
The problem here is either that the water system pressure has dropped again between the water works and the OP's house for whatever reason (intentional choice by water department or due to unknown as yet undetected leaks somewhere) to the point where the OP's pressure and flow rate drop when his home uses too much volume at the same time...
Either the pressure needs to be increased back to what it was, the size of the feeder pipe from the street main enlarged to help with the flow capacity at the new pressure the water department has established OR the OP will likely need to install a large buffering tank in his basement and supply his water by pumping it out of that tank with a jet pump, if the other options aren't to his liking...
~~ Evan
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Or the flow could be restricted by an obstruction, kink in plastic pipe, a partially closed valve, etc. Hence his point on a RESTRICTED pipe. It doesn't matter if you have 1" pipe or 4" pipe if some restriction has it choked off to the same effective passage.

Or it could be a restriction.

Or if it's a restriction, the restriction needs to be found and fixed. I'd check for that before I installed a larger service.
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The gage would tell you if your water pressure falls when a second device is opened. Help find out if the device(s) are defective, or if the water pressure drops.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
That's something I'd have to call someone in for. I wouldn't mind having a plumber come out for something definitive, but I hate to pay for something that is going to be a seek and find game if there is anything left to be done that I could check or do myself. Back to your statement, I don't know how much a gauge at the meter would tell me as there is slightly over a quarter-mile of pipe coming up alongside the driveway along with a fairly steep incline.
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On Wed, 1 Feb 2012 18:45:00 -0500, "83LowRider"

Sounds to me more like clogged pipes. What kind of pipe do you have?
Try this. If there is no shutoff right near the meter, turn off the water, install a Tee in the main pipe right after the meter, and see what you have for pressure. If it's adaquate, it's your pipes. You cna also buy a well presure gauge and install this into that tee. What is the pressure? 40lb and up should be fine, 50 or more is preferred.
It could also be a bad main shutoff valve with loose washer. Check your valves.
Before doing any of this, why not have the water company check the pressure. That's what you pay them for.
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snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

It's a hydraulic system, you will need to check the pressure before the meter, after the meter before the distribution, then along the distribution system to find the "bottle neck". If the system isn't supplying adequate pressure call them. Public water supplies are required to provide a minimum of 25lb pressure to all parts of their system at all time, which usually include the backside of your water meter. Pretty standard stuff, http://10statesstandards.com/waterstandards.html
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snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

Copper pipe inside the house.

I almost have to believe that the pressure near the meter/road is very good as it was increased to the point of the water company giving out warnings and suggesting reduction valves for those at street level.
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Find some places along the path of the pipes from where they first become accessible where you can either measure pressure or open a fitting, spigot, etc. If you can flow the water you can visibly see how much water flows and what the pressure is like. With a gauge, you could see how the pressure at that point reacts as you open faucets, etc elsewhere.
From the description, it would seem very strange what's going on, not just a simple low pressure problem. IF it were just low pressure, then when you flush a second toilet, you'd have about 1/2 the flow rate in each one. You shouldn't have it go from normal flow rate in one to just a trickle in both. Sounds like some kind of obstruction in the pipe that when there is enough flow, moves to block it off. Kind of like one of those new fancy hoses they have for washers, etc that close off the supply if the pipe bursts.
Also, since it's obviously cold water too, it can't be the water heater, though it's possible that they fouled up with some obstruction in part of the cold supply to the rest of the house, if they worked on that at the time.
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On Thu, 2 Feb 2012 06:37:42 -0500, "83LowRider"

That assumes everfything has gone fine since then. And plainly, something is not fine. It could be not fine in your house, or not fine from the city.
At a friend's house, the drains worked badly. Maybe the toilet overflowed, The plubmer came and was going to dig up the front lawn and replace the drain all the way to the sewere. No use of a camera gto look for an obsturction, but another friend of the same guy told him to call the county. The county cleaned out their part of the sewer and after that, his drains worked fine.
It's always a mistake to think something works just because it used to work.
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On Thu, 02 Feb 2012 00:56:07 -0600, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

BINGO. loose washer or something in a pipe is moving around, if you get a high flow going, like 2 or more things using water it moves the "thing" to a position that blocks off the pipe. Turn off all water and the thing settles back into rest position where it lets water flow past.
Loose washer in a shut off valve? peice of scale in a pipe? Some other foreign object inside a pipe? If scale or foreign object it is most likey at an elbow.
Start replacing all your "stop and waste" globe valves with 1/4 turn ball valves. While pipes are apart reverse flush with water or compressed air to see if anything else comes out. Then again, if you remove a valve that has the washer loose or missing you found your problem. If the washer is missing then proceed to find it!
Remove 333 to reply. Randy
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On Wed, 1 Feb 2012 18:45:00 -0500, "83LowRider"

You mean water hammer, not hammer lock. no locking involved.
I havent' read the rest of the thread, but it sounds like you have low pressure. Could you put in your own, underground so it won't freeze, water tank, which would fill over time and provide pressure all the time. It has to be higher than your house, though maybe only one flight higher** OR
In NYC, city water pressure is enough for 4 flights or 5 and if you have 6, you have to put a combination pump in the basement. It's a tank with air in the top. As water is used, a pressure gauge turns on the water pump, to keep pressure in the tank, which propels the water to the 6th floor.
As the air in the top of the tank dissolves in the water, an airpump turns on, much less often, to replace the disolved air, which is carried away in the water.
The only ones I've seen have been expensive and enough for 50 appartments. Maybe there is another version for houses.
The owner of my building iddnt' know how it worked, and when someone flushed the toilet, the shower turned burnng hot. That's when I switched to taking baths, because I didn't get burned then.
**Buildings higher than 6 stories have a tank on the roof,. maybe on a stand on the roof. And a water pump in the basement to get the water up that high. Like a water tower in a small town, but each building has one. When they have dramas set in nYC with helicopter views of the city, you can often see the tanks, though often they are behind decorative walls.

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news:43hni71mn90h6hobj0vhe0e3koac8b8dag@ 4ax.com:

???
"4 or 5 flights" is maybe sixty feet, definitely less than 30 psi of head loss.
Indianapolis city water pressure is around 120 psi -- which would still leave 90 psi available on the sixth floor. Is NYC pressure that much lower? Or is the pump a city code requirement?
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Doug Miller wrote:

City water pressure is usually in the neighborhood of 50-60 psi (at least in my city). Here, water is entirely gravity fed from elevated water tanks. The pressure provided by these elevated tanks is determined by the formula: PSI = 0.43 x height in feet. So, to reach 55psi, the tanks have to be 127 ft high.
To accomplish the same thing in Indianapolis, the tanks would have to be 280 feet up in the air. At that height, the city would be dotted with water towers taller than all but 17 skyscrapers in the downtown area. (Currently the Lucas Oil Stadium, at 270 feet, is number 18.)
The alternative to a gravity-fed system is one employing booster pumps. For a city the size of Indianapolis to reach 120psi, we're talking pumps as big as those used to pump water OUT of New Orleans.
I can't find any reference to the nominal water pressure in Indianapolis. Interestingly, however, I did find several news reports of the fire department being hampered by LOW water pressure, in one case only 10psi !
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wrote:

I used to know which it was, 4 flights or 5, but I can't reember.
The other quiestion I've long had is, Does't it matter where the building is? My apartment building was at the top of Clinton Hill. I think the elevation was at least 50 feet above those who lived closest to the East River or the Atlantic Ocean.
My building was 6 stories high, and I lived on the 5th floor. I think the water worked until the 65-year old woman (who probably inherited it from her husband) sold the building to a 30-year old Greek immigrant who just didnt' seem to understand how it was supposed to work. After he bought it, it didnt' seem to work. When I was in the basement, the water pump was running constantly and there was almost no air at the top of the water tank. I didn't know how it was supposed to work either, but I went to the library and found a book with a drawing of how it was set up. I gave him a copy of the drawing, and maybe a page that described it, but that didn't help.
Although I switched to baths instead of showers, I could still see the problem when I flushed the toilet (Most NYC toliets use a flushometer, not a tank. So they need water pressure. That's also the reason flushing has such an effect on the water pressure, because there is no tank that's part of the toilet. Instead it takes water out of the pipe, almost as much as the pipe would give. (I had spent a year trying to adjust the flushometer, but sine there was only one screw for adjustment, I finally decided there was no adjustment that would fix it. .

I don't remember or never knew what actual pressures were. But I'm pretty sure the water pump/air pump/ water tank in the basement is a requirement for buildings more 5 and 6 stories tall. Maybe not private homes but I don't think t here were any private homes** that tall. And I'm sure the tank on the roof was a requiremnt for buildings over 6 stories tall.
**I lived on Clinton Hill, on Clinton Avene. In 1890 it was one of the 3 fanciest n'hoods (the Hll, the Heights, and the Slope) , and probably THE fanciest street in Brooklyn. Charles Pratt was an industrialist who made a lot of money in the 19th Century, in oil etc. He built Pratt Institute as iirc an engineering and architecture school, but he built the buildings with industrial strength floors, so if the school failed he could turn it into a factory.
He lived in a real mansion on Cllinton Ave. With a lving and dining and kitchen on the first floor, bedrooms on the second, and a ballroom on the third. All the movies you see from the period with fancy dances make more sense when you realize people had their own ballrooms.
When each son go married, the father built him another mansion , with a ballroom too. Except the last, I think the 3rd son. By the time of his marriage, the Brooklyn Bridge had been buildt (1893) and New York and Brooklyn had merged (1897?) and it was downhilll for Clinton Ave. from then on. Although even in 1930, my building was built. An apartment building, which to me is part of going downhill, but it had a doorman, two eleveator operators, a concierge in the basement to receive packages and groceries and meat , a dumbwaitier with "doorbells) in each aparatment so the concierge could send the packages up. A cedar closet in every apartment, a potato and onion lbin in the wall between the kitchen and the outside, and the front 2 apartments on floors 2 to 6 had a maid's room with her own bathroom, off of the kitchen. On the first loor the front apartments were a little smaller because the main hall to the outside took up space, and they were intended for doctor's offices or something similar.
For the 3rd son, Pratt built him a mansion on Park Avenue in Manhattan.
So if the Pratt's had 3 story houses, I don't think any house were 5 or 6, although maybe in NYC,. The Cooper Hewitt Museum etc. were private houses. I have to go look at how tall they were. Still, if one could afford a private house 5 stories tall, I'm sure he put in the best plumbing whether code required it or not.

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