Low Hot Water Pressure in Some Areas, But Not All


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Old 05-14-11, 05:15 PM
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Low Hot Water Pressure in Some Areas, But Not All

Here is the background. We live in a townhouse that is about 20 years old. Our master bath is on the second floor. In our master bath, we have low hot water pressure coming out of the shower, but in the bathroom right next to it, no issue with the hot water or pressure. I removed the showerhead in our master bath and it does not appear to be restricting the water flow as the pressure from the line seems weak. I checked both upstairs sinks and we have great pressure and hot water. Starting today, the dishwasher, which is on the first floor, sounds like it is not getting enough water as it usually does. I checked the sink and I am getting low pressure from the hot water side. I checked our downstairs bathroom, which is right behind our kitchen, and there is no issue with the hot water or pressure.

What could be causing this? Would it be a clog? I would think it would affect everything rather than certain areas. All of the piping appears to be PVC throughout the house. My only other thought would be the Hot Water Heater, which is the original HWH. My wife thinks it is the HWH.

I do not mind attempting to fix something myself; however, Iíve been very busy lately and I am thinking about calling a plumber or having a new hot water heater installed. Any ideas or thoughts before we call for help.

Thanks!
 
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Old 05-16-11, 12:40 PM
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My first guess would have been the shower body in the master bath but now that you say the dishwasher is having a problem, your wife maybe right. A 20 year old hot water heater is a little risky.
 
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Old 05-18-11, 08:52 PM
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Thanks. Is there any way examine the HWH to tell if that is the issue before buying a replacement?
 
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Old 05-18-11, 09:10 PM
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What kind of water pipse are in your home?

If it was the HWH you would have low pressure everywhere.

If its only some areas it could be the fixtures, valves, or piping.

If it was only the shower then the cartridge balance spool could be bad. But you stated othet areas.

If you have galvinized water piping that may be your issue.

If you HWH is indeed 20 yrs old I would not touch it to examine it. You may open a whole can of worms.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 05-19-11, 07:33 PM
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Thanks Mike. From what I can see, all of the pipes appear to be PVC. I already checked the fixtures for mineral build up. I could take a look at the values and see if there are any issues. Is there any way to tell if it is the piping without disconnecting the pipes?
 
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Old 05-19-11, 08:37 PM
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Take a sink with good cold and low hot water. Turn off the valves and disconnect the supplys at the faucet side. Aim the cold supply in a bucket and open the valve. Note the pressure and force of the water. Now do the same for the hot. If the pressure feels the same its in the faucet internal. Maybe sediment from the 20 yrs old heater clogging the fixture.

If pressure seems low then its in the line from there to the hot water heater.

I feel you may find its in the fixtures, if you have other fixtures that are good with hot pressure.

You can try removing the cartridge and inspect for debris. A goog thing to check before you do anything is the aerators. If you see alot of debris that looks blue and white it is probably the dip tub from the heater. This are plastic pieces that clog on the hot side only.

Mike NJ
 
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Old 05-21-11, 10:12 AM
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Going to give that a try today. By the way, I was testing the water pressure today and after I filled a glass with hot water there were white particles floating in the glass. When I filled a glass with cold water, not as many. I had similar results with my other faucets. So I can assume there is a mineral build up somewhere, but with most of the particles in the hot water - would this indicate that it is in the HWH?
 
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Old 05-21-11, 04:10 PM
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My thought was that there was rust or something else being deposited in the places where you have low pressure. However, I also agree with the possibility that there is a galvanized pipe, or worse yet, a galvanized pipe connected to a copper pipe. That would certainly cause some chemical reaction.
 
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Old 05-22-11, 07:55 AM
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It sounds to me like you HWH. I am on your wife's side on this. After 20 years it's useful life is over pretty much and it will be full of mineral deposits by now. You could try and empty the tank a few times and flush fresh water through it to see if that improves things, but it is time for a new one anyway.
 
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Old 05-27-11, 07:12 PM
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Turned out to be the HWH. After we replaced it, everything seems to be working properly now. Thanks for the advice and help!
 
 

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