One of the most vital aspects of an enjoyable showering experience is adequate water pressure. If you have noticed a significant decrease in the water pressure of your shower, there are a number of problems that could be occurring in your plumbing system. Here are the top water pressure issues and how to fix them.
Problem #1: Clogged Showerhead
This is the most common reason for an unexpected decrease in water pressure. As water flows through your showerhead, mineral deposits can build up and impact the water pressure you experience while showering.
How to Fix It: Preventative maintenance is the easiest way to avoid a clogged showerhead. Clean your showerhead on a regular basis by removing it and soaking it overnight in a solution of equal parts water and vinegar. The vinegar’s cleaning properties effectively remove mineral deposits, so the next morning when you reattach your shower head, you should notice a return to normal. If not, one of the following issues may be to blame for your lower water pressure.
Problem #2: Low-Flow Showerhead
Older models of low-flow showerheads were much less effective than the ones produced today and resulted in the slowing of water movement. To check if your showerhead is low flow, place an empty five-gallon bucket under the showerhead, turn the cold water on full blast, and use a timer to see how long it takes to completely fill the bucket. Divide the 5 gallons by the number of minutes it took. For example, if it took 2.5 minutes, you divide five by 2.5 and get 2 gallons per minute. This is the current standard, while older low-flow showerheads put out around 1.5 gallons per minute.
How to Fix It: You can’t fix an outdated low flow showerhead, so you will have to upgrade to a more modern, efficient system. More recently produced showerheads conserve water while still retaining the desired water pressure.
Problem #3: Defective Water Pressure Reduction Valve
The function of a water pressure reduction valve is to manage the water pressure being directed out of your shower, so this is the next logical place to look for a problem. If the water pressure significantly drops when the toilet is flushed, this is the strongest indication that the problem lies with the valve. This instrument works by combining warm and cold water to properly balance the water pressure, and therefore can be affected by the operation of nearby fixtures. Toilets utilize only cold water for flushing, so this creates a substantial imbalance in the pressure adjustment.
How to Fix It: Water pressure reduction valves wear out over time and sustain damage, meaning they should be monitored and serviced as part of your typical home maintenance routine. If the valve is not functioning properly, you will need to contact a local plumber to inspect it and if the damage is severe enough, possibly replace it. A plumber can more thoroughly investigate the issues with your water pressure and recommend the right solution.
If you are experiencing issues with decreased water pressure in your shower, contact the professionals at Mr. Rooter today by calling (858) 278-7600. Regular service of your plumbing system is necessary to prevent blockage, corrosion, or leaks that may be causing pressure drops.