Low Water Pressure
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Low Water Pressure (by Tris1968 [OH]) Apr 22, 2019 5:03 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by plenty [MO]) Apr 22, 2019 5:24 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Roy [AL]) Apr 22, 2019 5:41 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Jasper [OH]) Apr 22, 2019 6:19 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Tony [NJ]) Apr 22, 2019 7:11 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Apr 22, 2019 7:23 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Robert J [CA]) Apr 22, 2019 7:54 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by Hoosier [IN]) Apr 22, 2019 9:08 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by AllyM [NJ]) Apr 22, 2019 9:13 AM
       Low Water Pressure (by RR78 [VA]) Apr 22, 2019 2:12 PM
       Low Water Pressure (by MikeA [TX]) Apr 22, 2019 7:12 PM

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Low Water Pressure (by Tris1968 [OH]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 5:03 AM

I'd love to hear from other landlords that have experienced low water pressure in their rentals and what, if anything, they've done to correct it.

I have a duplex with one water meter. Galvanized pipe coming into the house is very corroded. I'm looking into having a plumber come out to repair that. I wouldn't be surprised if the entire line to the street is corroded as well.

The water bill is already higher than anticipated. We purchased this house last summer and figured my rents based off of a $150.00 water bill for the entire house. Well, the bill has run $175-$195 per month.

I'm concerned that if I put money into repairing/replacing this line, that the bill will go much higher.

Thoughts or suggestions appreciated.


Low Water Pressure (by plenty [MO]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 5:24 AM

Have the plumber replace the lines. Perhaps even faucets. Are you, as landlord paying the water bill? If so ask the plumber whats involved in getting each of the units on its own meter. And let your tenant pay. Does your water bill include the sewer or trash? --99.203.xx.xx

Low Water Pressure (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 5:41 AM

If you have galvanized pipes that are over 50 years old, you could have rust (corrosion) that has built up inside the pipes. If this is the case, replacing the pipes with PEX would help solve your problem.

Have a licensed plumber come out and inspect your water lines and go from there. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Low Water Pressure (by Jasper [OH]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 6:19 AM

Low water pressure can be frustrating and annoying to tenants and may cause excessive turnover. The water meter measures the amount of water coming into the house, not the rate at which it flows in. Your city may have enacted a general increase in water rates since you bought the house, and if so, that could account for some of the increase. Also water usage is proportional to the number of people living there, so the more people living there, the higher the usage. If you're providing laundry hookups, the tenants could be washing a lot of clothes, or even having friends/relatives come in and use their washer. These major expenses, like replacing a water line to the street, are part of the landlording business and contribute to maintaining the value of your property. --71.30.xx.xxx

Low Water Pressure (by Tony [NJ]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 7:11 AM

My 2 cents. All the above observations are credible and I'll add some. Old galvanized pipes are the likely cause, but I've seen this problem occur after nearby water company work. Turning water off - then back on can stir up dirt and corrosion which can clog the filter in a water meter - thus reducing pressure. Ask your utility if there has been work done nearby. I have 4 properties in same small town. Water pressure varies widely by neighborhood. Ask your neighbors if they have the same experiences.

I have a 16 unit property with each unit occupied by 1 adult. No laundry, dishwashers, or outdoor hose hookups. Monthly usage is typically 16,000 gallons - real close to 1,000 gallons per month per resident. --73.215.xxx.xx

Low Water Pressure (by Robert,OntarioCanada [ON]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 7:23 AM

Galvanized pipe is iron with a coating. Replacing the pipe with pex is the best solution. Water consumption can be reduced by installing low flow Niagara Flapper less toilets which only use 4.8 liters per flush. Flappers always give problems where there are leaks then the water consumption goes up. Change all the shower to low flow along with all the aerators on the faucets to low flow. Well money upfront to replace the toilets where over time will get the money back in reduced water sewage charges. There are videos on Niagara flapper less toilets on You Tube. Finally the galvanized is only problems where the entire system galvanized pipe should be replaced. --147.194.xxx.xx

Low Water Pressure (by Robert J [CA]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 7:54 AM

Since I'm also a licensed plumbing contractor, I often "test" each fixture location after removing any aerators or restriction devices at the faucets.

Sometimes it's just a riser line or a section of horizontal piping. So long a the pipes are still in okay condition with no signs of erosion, I can sometimes do a quick fix by replacing troubled areas.

For example, one shower had little pressure, but the sink was fine. Meaning the line going to that bathroom was okay, but only the shower had issues. I removed the supply pipe from the shower manifold and found it blocked by sediment and rust. I flushed out and cleared that short section then reattached it. Now it works fine. Or the shut-off valve and wall nipple under a sink is clogged. When only one small area is affected, it can be fixed.

But when my buildings reach an age beyond 60 years, the galvanized start to have local small issues. When they reach 80 years, it's time to change out the pipes. --47.156.xx.xx

Low Water Pressure (by Hoosier [IN]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 9:08 AM

I agree with Roy. I don't recommend a "patchwork" approach of just cutting out one small section of galvanized to replace the troubled area. AT LEAST replace every stitch of it in the leg that is giving you issues. Cutting drywall open or paying a plumber $80 just to show up at your house is not something you want to repeat every 6 months.

As far as the line going out to the street, I think the responsibility varies by municipality. In our area they will get the line to the meter, which is usually out by the street/sidewalk. If you have that line replaced, make sure they use 3/4"....they used to use 1/2" and you might as well upgrade to what's commonly used today.

It's different on the drain/sewer, you are responsible out to the city main line and if your drains go under the street that can be a major expense.

As Roy said, PEX is your best option. CPVC is another option but is not as good IMO.

My rentals all were built in the 1950s and early '60s, so I've dealt with the internal rust issue and it's real. First try cleaning aerators, but if that doesn't work then it's likely something more substantial.


Low Water Pressure (by AllyM [NJ]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 9:13 AM

That is too much for the water bill for a duplex. My worst one is $200 every three months with five people using it. The galvanized pipe is full of rust on the inside and the path for the water may be smaller than a pencil. It's going to look like mud in the building soon so you need to move now during warm weather. There may be leaks all over if it's all galvanized and those would be leaks in the walls inside of the metered area. --173.61.xxx.xx

Low Water Pressure (by RR78 [VA]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 2:12 PM

If you have galvanized pipe it is past its lifespan. You know you will have a problem.

Why wait for an emergency you know will happen soon.

Replace it.

I dont think the increase pressure will hurt you.

But if you think it will. You only have to shut your main cut off valves part way for you to lower the volume. --73.152.xx.xxx

Low Water Pressure (by MikeA [TX]) Posted on: Apr 22, 2019 7:12 PM

You may find that there is a pinhole in the old galvanized pipe as well. Typically galvanize with rust from the inside out and at a point it will get a pin hole. If it's in the yard, you may never even know it.

Since you are likely going to have to trench and replace the entire line (and maybe inside the house also), it would be a great time to split it out and have each side on their own meter. You may have to continue to pay water with current tenant, assuming they are on a lease. But once they vacate you can have new tenant pay their own water. Nothing makes for wise water users like paying their own way. --50.26.xx.xxx

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