How to Reduce Water Pressure in the Home
From installing a pressure reducing valve to contacting your water supplier, there are a number of ways in which you can reduce the water pressure in your home. While some deem high-pressure water as an advantage, it can be costly and may lead to damage to your home and appliances. If you are concerned about the pressure of the water in your home, this guide will help you to identify some of the potential problems.
Pressure reducing valve: decreasing water pressure
If you find that the increased water pressure in your home is causing you some concern, you can reduce the flow by slowly turning down the internal stop tap. The pressure and flow will be reduced as the flow of water is decreased by creating a reduced downstream from the stop tap. Alternative methods can be found by installing a pressure reducing valve to protect the pipework in your home.
Should you find that damage is being caused inside your property, e.g. to your appliances, you can isolate the supply of water through your external or internal stop tap. For emergencies, contact your water supplier.
Identifying the cause of high water pressure
Suddenly developing high water pressure is rare but if it does happen in your home it could be due to the water supply that runs to your property. Increased pressure will be identified when you see an excessively strong flow of water from your cold water tap. You may also notice that some things in your home are leaking, toilet cisterns over-fill occasionally during the night or intermittent leaks appear.
The causes of this could simply be geographical, with the water pressure in the new area to which you’ve moved being higher than that you are accustomed to. Or, it could be because work is being carried out in a nearby area, which has caused air to get into the pipes. When the air gets trapped it can increase the pressure of the water but this will only be temporary.
Identifying why you have noisy pipes
If you start to hear noises in your pipes, there are a number of possibilities as to why these are occurring. Firstly, air may have got into the pipes, you could have a faulty tap or it may be down to loose pipework. All of these symptoms can create the juddering, banging noises in your pipes that you may have noticed.
If you’ve developed a leak in one of your pipes, this could sound like a rushing noise, which is probably more prominent during the night. The majority of noises in pipes arise from internal problems and a plumber should be contacted if you are concerned.
Locating your external stop tap
An external stop tap will normally be located on the boundary of your property and can be accessed if you have any immediate issues with your water supply. However, the majority of new properties will also have an internal stop tap to isolate individual water supplies.
If you are on a water meter, the stop tap will usually be located with your meter and will normally be a brass tap or a square plastic head, which will need to be turned 90-degrees to switch off the water supply. An older meter may have a separate stop tap, which will normally be brass.
Identifying why you have low-pressure water
Finding that your property has low water pressure could be down to a number of factors. The elevation above sea level of your property in relation to the local reservoir and water mains could be the reason as this will decrease the pressure in your home if the supply must be pumped uphill. Pipe conditions shared water supplies and peak times of demand are other reasons why you may experience lower water pressure.
If lowered water pressure has suddenly occurred, you may need to check your stop tap to make sure that it is open fully. If you can, you can also check the external stop tap to see if this is opened fully too, but you should only do this if it is safe to do so.
Should you have any concerns about the water supply to your home, you should contact your water supplier immediately to discuss your concerns. We also offer a range of helpful guides that may help you to solve the problem in your home, including our article: “What causes Water Hammer & how to eliminate it”.