Water Hose Pressure Improvement
As a gardening enthusiast or even just as a lawn enthusiast, you might sometimes be asking yourself, ‘Why is my hose pressure low?’ or ‘Will a smaller hose increase water pressure?’ There are a number of answers to such questions, but the main thing is to consider the simple things first, before investing in a pump or some other more complicated solution.
1. Hose Check
Your first port of call is the garden hose per se; there could be a leak in it, so you need to lay it down flat on the ground, turn on the water, then scrutinize the rubberized column of hose pipe as best you can, checking to see if there are any little leaks. If you find one, some rubber patching kit can be used to plug it. You might have to get right down to the level of the ground in order to see potential leakages.
2. Hose Nozzle
You then need to check the joining of the hose to the spigot, by first examining the hose nozzle. Sometimes there can be a faulty connection that can affect the water pressure on your hose. You might have a splitter, too, and that also needs to be checked. As with your computer, there are times when simply switching off and on can fix a problem; in this context, switch off the water, disconnect the hose nozzle, then reattach it. Hopefully, this will do the trick.
If not, it could be that there is a kink or a twist somewhere down the line of your hose. Again, it’s worth laying it out, maybe along the length of your garden, giving it a thorough inspection. Sometimes the winter months can be cruel, or if it’s stored on a reel the rolling coil might not be completely smooth. Try gently turning on the water and switching your nozzle to ‘off’, thereby inflating every part of the hose and letting it regain its shape over the course of a day or two. This is best done in the summer months.
The dirt inside the tube of your hose can cause blockages and, consequently, the water pressure to decline. To cleanse it, put about a quarter of a cup of bleach into a large bucket of water, into which you then submerge your coiled hose. Leave it for several hours, then take it out and put it in a bucket of plain water for just one hour. You are then free to remove it, re-connect to the spigot and spray it through for several minutes in order to remove any lingering bit of detritus. Doing this once per year, during spring, should clean out all the gunk that might have accumulated during winter.
If all of the above hasn’t fixed it, try checking out your mains pressure. Switch off all the faucets and water-based appliances (eg. washing machine, dishwasher) in your house. Then, locate your mains supply, possibly in your basement, and screw on a pressure gauge to its nozzle. All you do is turn the nozzle’s valve counterclockwise in order to find the reading. You can do this from a faucet if your mains supply doesn’t have a nozzle. The average home’s water pressure should be between 40 and 60 psi, ideally somewhere comfortably within that ballpark.
If your pressure reading is lower than 40 psi, you can manipulate the PRV (‘Pressure Reducing Valve’) by using a wrench. Turn it slightly clockwise and take another reading, taking care not to go over 60 psi; your household pipes are not built to withstand more than this. If in doubt, pay a modest fee for the services of a plumber, who is an expert in such things.
7. Go high
Talking of plumbers, it might be the case that your home suffers from low pressure and the ‘PRV’ alterations aren’t having any effect. If so, a plumber can easily install a high-powered nozzle. These are commonly shaped in a ‘fire hose’ shape; thin, long, and well able to channel water using increased pressure. You won’t want to use this when watering delicate flowers, but if you want to give your lawn a thorough soaking during summer months, it’s just the ticket.
If you don’t want to get a nozzle installed, consider a water pump. Similar to a washer, you simply screw your garden hose into it, then connect to an outlet. The hose should then be able to spray long distances; ideal if you have a larger than usual garden; they range in price from as little as $20 to over $700. The higher-end pumps have all sorts of options that enable you to adjust spray style, pressure settings, etc. It may even have the capacity to act as a pressure-washer, allowing you to blast away mildew and mold, completely cleansing the whole side of your house, if you want.