A water pressure regulator ensures that high water pressure from the supplier is reduced to a lower residential pressure for the user, and they also help to maintain a predetermined water pressure inside the home, which ensures that piping and water appliances are functioning under a safe pressure level.
Getting a plumber out to install your new water pressure regulator is probably the best idea, but if you're a home improvement expert and plan to install the regulator yourself, here are a few simple tips to help you to get the job done quickly and safely.
Step 1 - Get the Right Water Pressure Regulator
There are so many water pressure regulators on the market that at times it can seem easier to grab the first one you see, rather than take the time to consider what you need the device for, and how you intend to install it.
The best type of regulator for someone installing themselves would be a quick-fit machine that can be added in with a few simple turns of the wrench. These can be found online, or purchased at local hardware stores.
Step 2 - Locating Your Pipes
You will have to dig down near your water meter to find the control valves for your household, and to locate the pipes where the pressure valve will be located. You may need to dig three or four feet around the edge of your meter before you find the valves, and the pressure nipples, which are like triangular fittings on the end of the pipe. Turn off the water.
Step 3 - Installing the Water Pressure Regulator
Once the water has been turned off, remove the pipes from around one of these nipples. Locate the one which is flowing clean water towards your home, and then unscrew the large fitting with your wrench. Slide the water pressure regulator onto the pipe, so that it's inside it, and then replace the pipe.
You may need to saw off a few inches of pipe in order to get the right fit now that you have the regulator installed, but be careful how much you remove. Once the pipe ends are together again, fit the pressure control valves around the new point, and then wrap tape around all of the connections.
Screw the nipple back onto the pipe by tightening it with the wrench, and then set the water pressure regulator. If you have a more advanced model, you may need to turn it on and program a specific amount before you're finished.
Step 4 - Finishing
Close the pipe ends tightly, and then start the water again. You should check for leaks before you refill in the hole, so wait for a few minutes, and then examine your pipes.
You may wish to add special plastic cuffs available from hardware stores before rejoining the pipes, as these can help to prevent leakage. When you're fully satisfied, put the earth back in the hole and run water in your faucet for about half an hour, to clean the pipes before use.