Over the last few months, our water bill started going higher and higher (doubled), and we would have high water pressure when we first turned on various faucets or toilets (it would go away after a bit, but pressure was really high at first). I finally looked at our regulator and saw that there was a very small amount of water on the adjustment bolt, dripping down.

I then replaced the regulator with a new one and the pressure went away completely. I also fixed a couple of toilets that were running/leaking off and on. The very next month my water bill was back down where it used to be (normal).

Over the last week or so, I've started to notice the occasional high water pressure (high when first turned on after a period of it not running at all followed by a normalizing of pressure). My wife was taking a bath just now in our master and texted me about a sound. I went up and water was slowly dripping from one of our bathroom sinks as well as the shower head. I turned on the sink and it shot out at high pressure, then slowed to normal. Turned it off and the dripping stopped in both the sink and the shower head.

I just went down and checked the regulator - it's dry, no water. Latest water bill came in; it's a little higher than before, but nothing crazy... appears to be about the same as last year.

Any ideas?!

  • 1
    Can you tell us about your hot water setup? Is there an expansion tank or some other means to deal with the thermal expansion? – pdd Jan 30 '19 at 2:44
  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. Is your water source unusually hard? – Daniel Griscom Jan 30 '19 at 12:16
  • I'll have to look at the hot water heater. I haven't noticed anything like an expansion tank, but then again I wasn't necessarily looking for one. And re: water source being hard, I haven't noticed that. – Rex White Jan 30 '19 at 14:58
  • @pdd - there IS an expansion tank. It's attached just above the hot water heater. – Rex White Jan 31 '19 at 18:07
  • Do you have a 'permanent' by-pass around the pressure regulator? If so, even a mimimum leak within the by-pass valve may induce big amounts of 'steady' pressure in your system. – DDS Feb 9 '19 at 11:17

Go outside late at night and turn on the hose. With the other people not using their water you’ll see the true amount of pressure. I had a gofer chew through some polybutylene pipe. It slowed water up in my entire house. I’m in GA so I don’t know if they use Polybutylene where you are at. You can taste poly if you mix water with milk and it has a citrus taste. Hopefully it’s not your water heater adding pressure. Good luck. - Dale “Semper Fi”

  • Welcome to Home Improvement! This is interesting, but doesn't answer the original question. Please take our tour so you'll know how better to contribute here. – Daniel Griscom Feb 9 '19 at 16:52

The first thing I would do is go to the hardware store and buy a threaded water pressure gauge to measure your pressure - they're not expensive. Attach it to one of your threaded spigots in the laundry or outside. Turn on the water and read the pressure. If you can, do this in several locations. Then you'll know what you're dealing with. Normal water pressure in a home should be in the 60 to 70 psi range. A little higher won't hurt but too much higher can cause leaking fixtures or even burst fittings. If the pressure appears too high the pressure regulating valve you installed may not be installed correctly or may not be adjusted correctly to the proper pressure.
Water Supplier Concerns
Call your water supplier. I know our local water supplier delivers water at pressures in the 125 to 150 psi range but this sometimes varies. As new homes are added to the system the water suppliers sometimes raise pressure to adequately supply outlying areas. Your regulator valve should take care of this but you never know. This is one reason for plumbing codes requiring expansion tanks.

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