I've had a sudden drop in water pressure in my kitchen sink, which happens to be roughly 40 or 50 feet from where the main water line enters the house. My bathroom sink/shower seem to be fine, but they are much closer to the entry point. The water company came out and "turned up" the water pressure, but to no avail. Sometimes it's hardly more than a dribble out of our kitchen sink. My basement is fully opened up, so I can trace the water lines throughout the house and have verified no leaks. What should my next steps be?

1 Answer 1


This is normally caused by rust, scale or other debris clogging the aerator on the faucet, remove it and see if you have normal flow, note without the aeration the water stream will shoot like a garden hose so be prepared. If the flow is still reduced the orifices in the valve may be plugged by the rust, scale or other debris. Washer less faucets tend to have this problem more often than standard valves.

To fix a washer less turn the supply lines off remove the handle and cartridge , I put a bowl over the fitting and turn the cold on for a few seconds then the hot to purge anything in the lines out. Sometimes it is easy to clean the cartridge or plate other times a replacement is needed, if you just clean it is a good idea to change out the o rings with new ones many times they are color coded but if not they are standard sized and can be replaced with generic buna o rings.

These are the 2 places I have found problems that cause low flow on many occasions both with city water and well water systems.

  • Thanks, Ed. The water lines in the house are entirely copper and the kitchen faucet is only about 4 years old. Are the issues you noted still likely? I'm not up on faucet terminology apparently because I don't know what you mean by washer-less, but will look into it. Thanks!
    – clwhoops44
    Commented Jan 2, 2020 at 15:52
  • Unless there's a valve that was partially closed between the shower and the kitchen sink, this (SOMETHING is causing a clog, and it's usually in the locations noted, though if that does not clear it up you may have to work backwards to find it - i.e. is pressure & flow good at the shutoff valves under the sink? ...assuming you have those)
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jan 2, 2020 at 16:09
  • 1
    @clwhoops44 The issues Ed mentioned are definitely still likely. +
    – JACK
    Commented Jan 2, 2020 at 16:38
  • 1
    I have seen scale and rust on 100% copper lines other debris like sand bits of Teflon tape are likely in newer construction even on a well with 100% copper in the house guess what the well casing is , rusty metal! On a city water system many of the valves and pipes are usually cast. A washerless faucet is one that is usually a single handle. There is a cartridge or valve plate with 2 small holes that seal with o rings (not with washers as single handle screw type valves have). I have seen this issue many times in my own homes plus remodels we purchased for “flipping” both are easy to repair
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Jan 2, 2020 at 16:49

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