Customer Center

​High Water Pressure

If you are reading this, then you probably had a recent visit from a plumber.

Did you know:

  • Water pressure is mostly due to the elevation of storage tanks relative to the elevation of your home. 
  • Higher water pressures are in geographically low points (near a creek or bottom of a neighborhood).
  • County building codes require pressure reducing valves (PRVs) to be installed on new or remodeled residential plumbing if there is evidence of water pressure exceeding 80 psi.
    • To check your pressure, you can buy a gauge at a home improvement store.
  • A PRV reduces the water pressure coming into your home to protect your plumbing much the same way that an electrical surge protector protects your computer or television.

 Frequently Asked Questions

​High water pressure could cause:

  • Appliances and fixtures to fail sooner than average
  • Damage water heater
  • High repair and water bills 

If you are experiencing any of the below situations, it is time to talk to a plumber: 

  • A leaking faucet or appliance may be telling you that it is wearing down, and water pressure should be checked. 
  • A toilet flowing water from the tank into the bowl when not in use (could also be a simple toilet repair).
  • Water is spitting instead of flowing when the faucet is first turned on.
  • The sound of pipes banging inside the house may note that there are pressure fluctuations.
  • Irregular changes in pressure in shower or sinks.
  • Appliances failing early.
  • Mineral deposit build-up (white or greenish) on the outside of a shutoff valve. 

Check with your neighbors - It may be possible that your neighbors are experiencing a similar issue. If they are not, this may indicate a problem with your private plumbing. 

​A licensed plumber can assess your current plumbing and recommend whether a PRV is needed. Remember it's always a good idea to get more than one price quote.

  • Some contractors / licensed plumbers may choose to use an expansion tank (also known as a bladder) or other options to discharge high water pressure safely out of the plumbing system. 
  • A PRV can be installed three feet behind the water meter box or inside your home before the water heater.
    • Avoid installing PRVs in sidewalks or driveways. 
  • Please be sure your plumber clearly explains any warranty that may apply to the PRV and the plumber's work.
  • PRVs will eventually need to be replaced typically between 7 and 12 years.
    • Note: If your water pressure noticeably changes, It may be time to replace the PRV.
  • ​PRVs are adjustable
  • Consider replacing old fixtures or pipes that may be clogged with mineral deposits

​A licensed plumber can check your pressure and determine if you need a PRV.

Customers are in water pressure zones that serve several zip codes to provide minimal pressure of 20 psi to fire hydrants for public safety. CLTWater rarely changes water pressure zones. In those rare cases, a water pressure zone is changed to help customers that are experiencing low water pressure.

​Water pressure will vary throughout the day. Based on elevation and other factors, your home has a water pressure range that varies a few psi. You are more likely to experience:

  • The low range of water pressure during summer morning when irrigation use may be high in the neighborhood
  • The high range of water pressure typically from December through February when outdoor water use is minimal

​When houses are built or remodeled, the water pressure should have been checked. If it is over 80 psi at the time of the test, a PRV is required. The test could have been conducted at a time of day when water pressure didn't exceed 80 psi due to other factors (water usage, etc.).

​Changing water pressure zones is extremely rare. Most properties have been in the same water pressure zone for several decades.

If CLTWater determines that customers need to move to a different water pressure zone, you would be notified several times in advance. 

Wastewater projects won't have any impact on drinking water pipes or pressure.

Water projects may enhance flow and stabilize pressure by cleaning or replacing old pipes. Adding larger pipes may increase water storage in the area but will not significantly affect water pressure since most water pressure is the elevation difference between the storage tank and your home.

​The property owner maintains a water pipe from the end of the meter box (including tailpiece) to building(s). The property owner is responsible for pipes and fixtures in the buildings and wastewater pipes until the edge of the street or street right-of-way (varies). Charlotte Water maintains water meter up to and including the meter yoke assembly, meter box, and water and wastewater pipes under the public street.

Water Service Connection Cross Section Graphic that shows homeowners responsibility and Charlotte Water's responsibility

​Just as pipes under the street age and have an end of service, so does plumbing in your home. Consider planning for the eventual replacement of plumbing that exceeds 50 years.