How Can I get Good Water Pressure to my Shower??

My house is in a row of terraces. We are number 7 of 8, with the water supply (a small diameter, old lead pipe) coming down the back of the houses, with a supply coming off this into each house. Therefore the supply into our house is variable to say the least.
We have a (cheap) combi boiler and normal mixer shower (i.e. no pressure equaliser or whatever it is called). The shower is dreadful - water is not hot enough in the winter and tends to be very low pressure, and it can almost stop at times (I assume when people up the water supply pipe turn taps on etc.).
Any ideas please?
Do we need a better boiler, better shower, or are we doomed unless the water supply to the house improves?
Thanks for any help.
Bram
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Bram Miller wrote:

I guess this is why the "tank in the loft" systems evolved in the UK with this sort of poor water supply. You could ask the water company to upgrade your supply. However, when I asked about this for a London terraced property they want an extrordianary amount to do it. It seems to you will have to go back to stored water of some kind, either hot or cold, to even out your flow. Putting a pump on the shower will do no good if the flow rate is so poor.
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supply to the boundary of your property. You will have to complete the supply to inside your property, which, with plastic piping and screw connectors and stopcocks etc., is relatively cheap and easy.
Suggest you phone your water company and ask if they charge for lead to plastic upgrades.
Neil
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wrote:

In a terraced house, when the supply comes from the front, the homeowner only supplies the stop cock in most cases. In some areas they will even supply that. Then you have to tee off at the stop cock and take a 22mm pipe to the combi. the other pipe from the tee will be the cold taps.
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Digressing a little, my house is an end terrace in a block of 4. The water supply comes through my garden to the back of the house then runs along to feed the other 3. My cold fed electric shower shuts off due to low pressure if the cold tap downstairs is turned on or the washing machine starts filling. If there is nobody else in then it sometimes shuts off for no reason so I can only assume that it's the other 3 houses sapping the pressure. My neighbour across the road has the same water supply situation and he had a talk with the water supplier about upgrading the feed. The price put him off, but what he did find out was that the water supply to his house belongs to him. The other 3 houses have no automatic right to take a feed off his supply. He is within his rights to cut the other 3 off and force them to have their own supply pipes installed. The same applies in my case. So if the neighbours piss me off then I could cut them off and become the real neighbour from hell.
It made me think about the time a few years ago when the mains supply burst just 6 inches forward of my front garden boundary. Had it been inside, forcing me to fork out probably several hundreds to get it repaired, would it be reasonable to ask the other 3 houses to contribute to the costs? As I have good neigbours I doubt whether I would.
MJ
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Get a price from the water company to have individual large bore mains to the three house. The neighbours may be forced into it as "when yours is updated , their will be cut off". Everyone benefits the mains is updated.
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.andy
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wrote:

If it is lead pipe the cost may be minimal or a small charge. It is really a case of having too.
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On Sun, 26 Oct 2003 14:10:05 -0000, "Bram Miller"

There are a few options, Bram.
- Measure the water supply flow rate at the kitchen tap. There is a minimum requirement that the water suppliers have to meet of (IIRC) 9 litres/min. You will find details from Ofwat. Flow rate can be measured with a bucket and a stop watch and pocket calculator.
- Contact your water supplier and complain anyway and see if they are willing to fix the problem even if it is above the minimum level.
- You could get around the low flow/pressure problem by installing a tank in the roof and then a pump for the shower. I suspect that the house had one at some point and allowed the water suppliers to get away with smaller mains.
- You don't say what type or capacity of combi you have. If it's a cheap, small one it may only be capable of delivering 9-11 litres per minute of water with a temperature rise of 30 or 35 degrees. This is how they are specified. If you consider that the water can be 8 degrees or less in the winter and that from a shower you need around 40, then even if the flow rate were better, the boiler would let you down. 10 or so litres/min does not make for an exciting shower...
- Electric showers are not useful here.
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I get 6 lpm out of a Main Medway multipoint, and the showers with that are better than any electric shower i`ve seen...
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wrote:

I'm sure. Electric showers are about 4-5 litres/min. at best. My cats can piss faster than that.
The Main Medway manufacturer's spec. lists 6lpm for a 50 degree temperature rise, so you would be mixing some cold with that for the shower. They also say 10.8 lpm for 30 degrees rise which is close to the way that a combi is specified. In effect, you are going to be getting about 12 lpm in the cold weather at 40 degrees whether you run water more slowly through the boiler and mix with cold or run all of it through.
The specified heat to water of 23kW is similar to a smallish combi so not surprisingly the results are similar.
An 11kW electric shower will manage about 5lpm e.g. look at the data sheet for a Mira Sport and there is a graph confirming this. Hardly surprising, since the input power is approx. half of your multipoint.........
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wrote:

Do you ever find people suggesting you have a B.O. problem by any chance? ;)
PoP
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