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Topic # 87364 27-Jul-2011 11:26 Send private message

We live in Mt Roskill, in a newish house (5 years old) It's two storeys and we have a rinnai gas water heater system installed. Whilst our water pressure isn't horrible (I have lived in places that dribble water out of the shower), it's far from impressive. None of the plumbers we have had around seem to think anything can be done about it, but I am sure there must be a way to get better water pressure, anyone here had any experience with such a thing?

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  Reply # 498428 27-Jul-2011 11:52 Send private message

Mains water pressure is about the height of your house relative to the reservoir, which is usually filled by pumps. Some flat places use pumping substations (CHCH) to move water.

Many baches/cribs in NZ use an electric pump to provide ade3quate water pressure when running off tank supplies.

Another option is to reduce the diameter of the pipes that the water runs through. This will increase the pressure, but reduce the flow.

Perhaps a different shower head (the ones that reduce your water use might be good). I think Methven do one which is popular. It has the effect of what I describe above , but the nozzle is shaped to make it feel like there is still lots of flow.

Only the last one is relatively cheap unfortunately.

Jon

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  Reply # 498438 27-Jul-2011 11:59 Send private message

Sorry OT but I wonder if Labour did a trial in your area?  Tongue out

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10536755

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  Reply # 498441 27-Jul-2011 12:02 Send private message

networkn: We live in Mt Roskill
...
Whilst our water pressure isn't horrible (I have lived in places that dribble water out of the shower), it's far from impressive.

The reservoir servicing that area is at the highest point of Hillsborough Road, opposite the Indian restaurant up near the old people's home at the end of Dominion Road extension.  How much water pressure you get, depends on your elevation relative to that reservoir.  If your house is also fairly elevated, the pressure will be quite low.

I now live on a farm, and have learnt an awful lot about water supplies since we moved here.  Where the gravity-fed pressure is insufficient, you need to use a constant-pressure pump to boost the pressure.  It will turn on automatically when the pressure falls below a preset level.  With one of these, you can have a great shower, regardless of the incoming water pressure.

There is a cheap brand of pump called Wallace assembled locally from imported parts.  I wouldn't recommend them, as we have had one of these fail, and it wasn't that old.  For the past 8 years, we have been using a Grundfos which has stainless steel for all the important parts, and never had any trouble with it at all.  Highly recommended if you want to go down this route.





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  Reply # 498447 27-Jul-2011 12:08 Send private message

First thing: check with your neighbours, see if their pressure is the same. If it's not, check the toby, try closing it and opening it up fully, could be a faulty valve within it. There might also be another valve where the pipe enters the house, check this is fully open too.

Is it mostly affecting the shower or all taps? For the shower you could get a hot water booster pump installed. If you have easy access to the roof cavity or the floor, then it won't cost too much. Otherwise you might need a few holes in the gib, which isn't nice in a newish house!

I think Jon has the right idea too, check that the taps installed are the right pressure, they should be unequal low pressure, not equal mains pressure. Maybe the original builders/plumbers assumed since it was a new area, that it would be mains/high pressure?






I have moved across the ditch.  Now residing in Melbourne as a VOIP/Video Technical Trainer/Engineer. 

gzt

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  Reply # 498453 27-Jul-2011 12:15 Send private message

No experience but I did look into it once. It is very common in other countries. Surprised your plumbers are not giving good answers, but there might be a reason for that I guess.

One product: http://www.pumpsonline.co.nz/circulator-pumps/hiflo-circulator-hot-water-booster.html - "Generally adds between 7 & 11 PSI (.5 to .75 bar) pressure to the existing inlet pressure"



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  Reply # 498515 27-Jul-2011 14:12 Send private message

Can you use a water pressure pump if you have an infinity gas water heater thing?

Seems like the most definiate way of fixing the problems.

I don't want to reduce the flow to increase pressure. We have tried a couple of heads, didn't seem to help, but when they renovated our ensuite, and removed the water to that area, the water pressure in the other bathroom was better if that helps?

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  Reply # 498521 27-Jul-2011 14:22 Send private message

networkn: Can you use a water pressure pump if you have an infinity gas water heater thing?

Seems like the most definiate way of fixing the problems.

Yes, certainly.  Your Rinnai is rated for mains-pressure, so you won't have any problems at all, unlike those who have low-pressure electric hot water cylinders.







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  Reply # 498526 27-Jul-2011 14:26 Send private message

I called pumps online and they are having issues with the unit that they say will provide 13psi extra, which costs $220. I said I would call them in a month or so and see where they are at with it. I think this is the least troublesome way to proceed.

Is it possible that having the water turned off in the ensuite during the reno's would have increased the shower pressure in the other upstairs bathroom or was it my imagination?

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  Reply # 498529 27-Jul-2011 14:32 Send private message

networkn: Is it possible that having the water turned off in the ensuite during the reno's would have increased the shower pressure in the other upstairs bathroom or was it my imagination?

It would have made some difference, but only when the taps in both bathrooms were being used at the same time.  If your pressure is borderline, then every extra bit of draw-off makes a difference.

For example, we have gravity-fed tank water in our cottage.  I turned the tap on the toilet cistern right down so that the cistern fills much more slowly.  Then if one of us flushes the toilet whilst the other is in the shower, it doesn't matter.  Only two of us live in the cottage, so we get by, but obviously not a solution for a household with more people.







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  Reply # 498530 27-Jul-2011 14:33 Send private message

I recall the good old days of taking my life in my hands to have a shower, and being pinned to the wall by the stream of lovely hot water coming from the shower head!

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  Reply # 498532 27-Jul-2011 14:36 Send private message

networkn: I recall the good old days of taking my life in my hands to have a shower, and being pinned to the wall by the stream of lovely hot water coming from the shower head!

Yeah, me too!  Trouble was that the hot water cylinder also used to run out quite quickly, now it never does.

Is your house in one of the elevated areas of Mt. Roskill, along Hillsborough Road or similar?







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  Reply # 498533 27-Jul-2011 14:39 Send private message

Nope Penney Ave near the School on May Road.

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  Reply # 498536 27-Jul-2011 14:41 Send private message

grant_k:
networkn: We live in Mt Roskill
...
Whilst our water pressure isn't horrible (I have lived in places that dribble water out of the shower), it's far from impressive.

The reservoir servicing that area is at the highest point of Hillsborough Road, opposite the Indian restaurant up near the old people's home at the end of Dominion Road extension.  How much water pressure you get, depends on your elevation relative to that reservoir.  If your house is also fairly elevated, the pressure will be quite low.

I now live on a farm, and have learnt an awful lot about water supplies since we moved here.  Where the gravity-fed pressure is insufficient, you need to use a constant-pressure pump to boost the pressure.  It will turn on automatically when the pressure falls below a preset level.  With one of these, you can have a great shower, regardless of the incoming water pressure.

There is a cheap brand of pump called Wallace assembled locally from imported parts.  I wouldn't recommend them, as we have had one of these fail, and it wasn't that old.  For the past 8 years, we have been using a Grundfos which has stainless steel for all the important parts, and never had any trouble with it at all.  Highly recommended if you want to go down this route.



How noisy is the pump?  



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  Reply # 498537 27-Jul-2011 14:43 Send private message

The guy I spoke to said they were VERY quiet. Sometimes you can't tell they are operating without touching them

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  Reply # 498540 27-Jul-2011 14:45 Send private message

networkn: Nope Penney Ave near the School on May Road.

Oh OK.  In that area of Mt. Roskill you are possibly being fed from the reservoir on top of Mt. Roskill itself.  It's a bit lower than the Hillsborough Road one IIRC, but still quite high above the surrounding streets.  Very strange that you shouldn't have decent water pressure there, especially if you are down the May Road end, where it's pretty much flat.





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