Take the 2-minute tour ×
Home Improvement Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for contractors and serious DIYers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I live in a small two story house (row home) with water service entering through the basement. The bathroom is on the second floor. Whoever did the main service line used 1/2 inch copper instead of the propper 3/4 inch, so I don't have ideal pressure. Moreover, the main shutoff valve is a globe valve, which I understand limits flow. After the valve, the rest of the main line is 3/4 inch pipe.

I don't have a water pressure problem when only one fixture is running, but the pressure drop is noticable when a second fixture is turned on.

Would it be worth it if I replaced the globe valve with a ball valve? How much difference should I expect in pressure just by replacing the valve?

share|improve this question
2  
Is the supply line coming out of the floor 1/2"? –  HerrBag Mar 8 '13 at 13:27
    
Yes. The supply line to the curb shutoff is 1/2 inch. –  Edwin Mar 8 '13 at 20:22
    
Its still worth it to replace, if only for convenience (1/4 turn 0-100%), But you'll still get 3x to 5x more flow –  HerrBag Mar 8 '13 at 20:26
add comment

2 Answers

up vote 4 down vote accepted

YES! I came across a 10:1 flow rate differential between 3/4 ball (25 GPM) and 1/2 globe (2.2 GPM) There's almost a 50% reduction, just going from 3/4 pipe to 1/2 pipe (I inferred the pipe size flow differential by comparing 1/2" and 3/4" ball valves of the same type here). Table 2 here Compares 2" ball at 228 and a globe at 44 for a ratio of 5:1, then add in pipe diameter and 10:1 seems reasonable.

Be sure they put in a full port ball valve in bronze with drain (on house side). Full port has the least flow restriction. Bronze is safe for potable water, the drain is for future repairs to drain the lines.

share|improve this answer
    
Can you provide a link to the source of your information? –  Tester101 Mar 8 '13 at 14:20
add comment

I went ahead and replaced the 1/2 inch globe valve with a 1/2 inch ball valve. Here are the results:

Before:

  • Static Pressure - 40 psi
  • With Bath Sink On - 26 psi

After:

  • Static Pressure - 40 psi
  • With Bath Sink On - 32 psi

Although it's not as much an improvement as I hoped, I'm satisfied with having made the replacement.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.