shower headThere are few things less frustrating than stepping into the shower and being met with water pressure that is too high or too low. Not only an this be frustrating, but water pressure that is too high can cause damage to your pipes over time. A simple task, getting into the habit of checking your homes water pressure a few times each year can help identify any problems and remedy them before they cause a larger issue.

The Importance of Checking the Water Pressure in Your Home

Checking the water pressure in a home is typically on the lower end of a homeowners to-do list, and often gets neglected until the water pressure becomes noticeably low. Although we all love good water pressure in our homes, especially when showering, too much of a good thing can be bad. High water pressure can cause damage to your pipe connections, appliances, faucets, and your water heater, just to name a few. Blowouts in flex lines are also possible! Stay on the safe side and void any expensive repairs by lowering your water pressure as soon as possible.

How to Test the Water Pressure

To test the water pressure in your home, all you will need is a pressure gauge which are relatively inexpensive. For easy hookup, get a pressure gauge with female hose threads, a rubber gasket, and the ability to measure up to 300 pounds per square inch (PSI).

Once you’ve picked up your gauge from the local hardware store, follow these steps:

  • Shut off all faucets inside and outside of your home, along with the water. Having running water while testing the water pressure can give an inaccurate read.
  • Attach the pressure gauge to one of the faucet’s in your home. If you have a well, select a faucet/hose bib closest to your well’s pressure tank and if you use town water, select a faucet/hose bib closest to the water meter.
  • Tighten the gauge and open the faucet all of the way. In order to get an accurate read, you do not want any water leaking from the faucet. If this happens, turn off the faucet, remove the gauge, tighten the faucet, and try again.
  • Check the pressure gauge for your reading.

An ideal pressure level is between 45 and 55 PSI and if you have pressure above 80 PSI or below 40 PSI, you’ll need to take action.

What to Do About Low or High Water Pressure

If your water pressure is too high…. Install a water pressure regulator and set the maximum water pressure to 75 PSI. If you already have a pressure regulator installed, it’s wise to still test the water pressure in your home. The regulator can fail without any noticeable symptoms.

If your water pressure is too low…. Your pressure regulator should be set to 50 PSI by default, but if it’s lower, turn it up. If it’s sitting at 50 PSI and you have town water, it could be an issue with the water pressure coming into your home. To fix this, simply install a water pressure booster to improve the flow.

If you need help testing the water pressure in your home or installing a regular, give A+ Plumbing, Heating and Cooling today to schedule your appointment at (603) 518-5777.