Why is my water pressure not as good as it used to be?

Image of a showerhead - Professional Plumber in PhiladelphiaFor many older homes in Philadelphia, the decrease in water pressure is a daily aggravation that no one enjoys. With the water pressure being such a central and important feature within any Philadelphia home, this is an important concern. Let’s take a look at some common reasons why your water pressure may not be as good as it used to be.

Does your home have steel or galvanized pipes?

For some Philadelphia homes and apartments, the use of steel or galvanized pipes can slowly be creating a noticeable decrease in water pressure. As the pipes continue to age; mineral and corrosion buildup inherent with steel or galvanized pipes begin to restrict water flow. Repair is not a viable option but rather replacement is the only true solution. Upgrading your Philadelphia home with PEX or CPVC pipes is a solution that will not only solve the immediate problem but keep it from re-occurring in the future.

Debris build-up due to external influences

If there has been recent repairs to the water main due to a crack or rupture; then you noticed a decrease in water pressure, it may be due to debris in your water system. Even a small amount of sediment can create a decrease in water flow, especially in kitchen sink, bathroom sink and shower faucets. Because of water flow restrictors debris in the system can cause these fixtures to clog more quickly. Depending on the amount of debris and type chemical treatments that help break down and flush the debris can often solve this problem, however it may be necessary to purge the system to restore it to its normal flow. If not caught quickly then bathroom and kitchen sink fixtures and showers may need to be replaced as well.

Mineral and hard water deposits

Most noticeable in the shower where tiny holes distribute the water into a spray, mineral and hard water deposits clog these tiny holes decreasing the water pressure. Usually with PEX and CPVC pipes these mineral and hard water deposits are not accumulated within the pipe (like that of steel and galvanized pipes) but will accumulate in showerheads and faucets where the flow is naturally restricted as a spray. Common options to restore the flow is to replace the faucet or to clean the faucet with a chemical that dissolves the mineral and hard water deposits (vinegar works great by the way).

Call IFixdit, LLC Today – (267) 979-4517

Picture of pipes - Professional Plumber in PhiladelphiaPlumbing leaks

Because water works in a pressurized environment if there is a leak within the plumbing system it can cause a decrease in water pressure. Plumbing leaks are not always easy to find especially if it’s a leak from the meter to the house where the pipes are underground. If you suspect that you have a problem with decreased water pressure that may be as a result of a leak in the system, be sure to contact a professional plumber that is expertly trained in diagnostics to track the problem down.

Water supply issues

Sometimes there is nothing wrong with your plumbing or fixtures in your Philadelphia home but rather the water supply is the problem. Just like your own pipes and fixtures, the city municipal water system can have the same problems with their water supply. Be sure to check with your local plumbing professional to see if they know of any particular problems that the city may be experiencing for your area.

When Experience Counts

IFixdit, LLC -Plumbing and Drains  has served Philadelphia as a professionally licensed and certified plumbing service for many years. Our combination of customer service and experience has created quite a reputation within our community. Whether you are having trouble with your water flow or need water heater repair, rest assured that our master plumbers are ready to get the job done.

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Help! My water heater does not get as hot as it used to.

Image of a Water heater - Plumbing Repair in PhiladelphiaA common problem that many homes in Philadelphia will experience is: when their water heater stops getting as hot as it used to. With the water heater being such a central and important component within any Philadelphia home, this is an important concern. Let’s take a look at some common reasons why your water heater does not get as hot as it used to.

How Old is the Water Heater?

We are going to start off with the most common reason, age. The average lifespan of a tank type water heater in your Philadelphia home is around 8 to 10 years so if your water heater is approaching that point, more than likely age is culprit. This is a valuable meter for diagnosis because there is no reason to spend money on a service call and repair for a water heater performance issue if the water heater is over 10 years old. The price for replacement water heaters over the years have come down significantly depending on the brand, quality and size.

Internal Component Failure

Fortunately, the parts that make up a water heater (whether gas or electric) are fairly simple; however, even simple systems can fail periodically. The typical components of a water heater are:

  • Gas valve (if it’s a gas water heater) – turns the gas on/off
  • Gas burner control – controls the flow/regulates gas to the pilot light and burner
  • Burner/element – the part that heats up the water
  • Dip Tube – this is the pipe that sends cold water to the bottom of the tank to be heated.
  • Thermostat – electric device that allows you to set the temperature

Of these components, the ones that are most likely to cause a decrease in heat without total failure are the dip tube and thermostat. For example: if the dip tube becomes disconnected or broken the cold water coming into the tank would dilute the hot water making it warm.

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Image of a garden tub - Plumbing Repair in PhiladelphiaExternal Factors

Sometimes we apply fault to the performance of the water heater when other external factors are in play. For example: if the temperature where the water heater is located drops significantly, the water heater will have to work harder to keep up or not be as hot when needed. In addition, if the demand for the water heater has changed, such as the expansion of a garden tub in your Philadelphia home, that would require a larger amount of hot water to be utilized. As a good rule of thumb, if you increase the capacity or needs of the home such as a bathroom addition or installing a larger bathtub; you should increase the size of the water heater to meet the demand. This is something that is often overlooked by your average home remodeling service.


Most parts of a water heater are not intended to be serviced by the homeowner. A licensed and trained professional should be utilized for servicing and/or replacing the water heater for your Philadelphia home. Unfortunately, many plumbing services in the Philadelphia area seem to want to recommend replacement of the water heater at every service visit. However, a quality plumbing service would recommend repair over replacement depending on these following questions:

  • Is the frequency of repair for your water heater excessive (More than 1 service call per year)?
  • Is the efficiency level of the water heater clearly affecting the utility bill?
  • Would a water heater repair be greater than 40% of the cost of a new water heater?
  • Has a recent bathroom addition or update straining the current size of your water heater?

When Experience Counts

IFixdit, LLC -Plumbing and Drains  has been serving Philadelphia as a professionally licensed and registered plumbing company for years. Our unique blend of customer service combined with experience serving the residents of Philadelphia, has created a reputation within our community of many satisfied customers. Whether you are having trouble with your water heater or need a simple drain unclogged, rest assured that our registered master plumbers are ready to get the job done.

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