We bought our house about five months ago and we noticed that we
cannot open two faucets at the same because this will cause the water
pressure to drop drastically. The Water heater is about eighteen
months old, so I do not think this it the cullprit. We do have a Water
Softener (Pure Water with a Economiser 5600 controller head) which
seems to be working fine. The previous owners told us that they have
not touched the unit in about four years except for adding salt about
every three months. I have added 2 40lb bags myself in the five months
we are living in the house. I turned the By-pass valve to the by-pass
position but the water pressure was still low when we open two faucets
in the house. It was even worse when we use the dishwasher, washer or
run the irregation sprinklers at the same time. The water pressure is
ok when only one faucet is open in the house but it is not what we are
used to in the apartment we used to live in. However when we have only
the irregation sprinklers running the pressure is enough to run five
single stream Rain Birds with no problems at the same time.
Can anybody please share some ideas with me where to start looking for
the problem. Thanks.
We will assume that this is a city water supply?
Get an inexpensive pressure gauge which can be coupled to
a garden hose thread (sill cock). Find out what the pressure
is coming in to the house and whether that drops when a
faucet is opened and how much it drops when irrigation is on.
Call the utility and ask if they will help locate the cause.
Ask neighbors if they have similar problems.
First connect to a hose sill cock. Run water at a sink inside and
see what happens. Repeat test with gauge connected to a source
inside (like laundry faucet or water heater drain valve).
As someone suggested, you may have a pressure reducing valve
on the service (city water??). That could be bad, a valve could be
partly closed, there may be old galv iron pipe that is clogged,
and on and on. There are a ton of variables and you have to
play detective. Experience counts for a lot in these cases.
You've proven that the water softener isn't cauing the problem. Bypassing it
and seeing no difference in water flow is the way to trobleshoot a softener
so... you should get a pressure guage and see what the static and dynamic
pressures of your water system is. Static is with no water flowing and
dynamic is with it flowing when you see the problem. You can buy a guage and
fitting to screw onto your garden hose or utility sink faucets. Assuming
'city' water, if you have a pressure regulator valve, it may have failed or
blocked and it should be checked and the pressure adjusted if possible. If
you have a well, then the pressure tank should have a pressure guage on it
and the air pressure should be checked in the pressure tank and adjusted if
needed. That is with no water in the tank and the air pr. is 1-2 psi less
than the turn the pump on switch setting. I.E. 30/50 psi water pressure gets
29-28 psi air pr. with no water in the tank.
BTW, you have a good softener; it has a Fleck 5600 mechanical metered
control valve. It should last service free for many years. You should have
it set up for your family's water use, especially if there are more or less
of you than the original owner's family.
Quality Water Associates
Is it just the hot water? Does the cold also have the problem. Do you
have non-softened outlets (like outside) try.
I suggest that the most likely problem is a restricted pipe. It could
be from the street to the point where individual runs come off the main.
The pressure gauge is a good idea as well.
You do not say the age of the home. I had one that had a galvanized service,
meter at the street to the house. I changed it to copper because of the
calcium in the line. Pressure went up to an acceptable level.
Pressure gauge is about the only way I know of.
Ok, I bought the Pressure gauge hooked it up to an outside spicket and
the pressure was 60 PSI. I then hooked it upto the Hot side of the
spicket for the washer. The pressure was also 60 PSI but when I opened
another Hot water faucet in the house it drop to 55 PSI. When I opened
the second Hot water faucet it dropped to 42 PSI. Any conclusions from
this from anybody? O, yes we are on County water and the house was
built in 1986. Thanks.
That sounds pretty normal to me. If pressure had dropped dramatically,
like down to 10 PSI, I would say problem.
But.....you could still have a problem (restriction) further
downstream from where you measured.
I bet the flow rate from the washer Hot spigot is more than you could
ask for. Right? If so, the problem is after that point.
More detective work.
Yes, the 60 PSI is more than enough. I checked the water pressure at
the kitchen faucet, both Hot & Cold were both 55 PSI (also enough).
The same for the faucet in the guest bathroom but while flushing the
toilet the pressure drops to 38 PSI. The water meter shows no flow of
water to indicate a leak when all water flow in the house is turned
off. Any suggestions what to investicate next? I appreciate all the
Even that drop to 38 PSI when toilet is filling doesn't surprise me.
But, if it results in unacceptable flow rate at the faucets, look
for some restriction. Since you have irrigation, there's a good bet
that there is a pressure reducing valve on the service coming in
for the domestic uses. It could be sticking, could have a screen
inside which is clogged, or something similar.
If you locate a reducing valve, try to measure the pressure
upstream (street) of it. Keep going with the detective work.
Again, the utility may be willing to assist.
Thanks for the info. I will try to locate this Pressure Reducing Valve
with the help of a knowledgeable friend that might know where I can start
looking for this valve. I have no idea where to start. Thanks again.
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