My current water boiler is in the basement and I would be happy with just a slight increase of pressure in the shower on the 2nd floor. If I move the water boiler to the attic (3rd floor), will the pressure in the shower increase?

By pressure I mean the amount of water :)


Everyone understands that there are other factors involved but to clarify, the pipe set already runs from top to bottom, so nothing will be changed there. Please keep this thread and comments to the original question, possibility of water damage, how much it cost to move it etc is not of interest.

The water comes from the municipality through the ground.

  • 2
    Depends. You haven't told us where your water pressure comes from. Are you on a well? Municipality? Please revise to add detail. Chances are the location of a boiler is irrelevant.
    – isherwood
    Jan 15 at 14:53
  • 2
    Most likely issue is that you have a low flow shower head, or debris is in the screen, or the flow reducer. ( others have removed those to get better flow.)
    – RMDman
    Jan 15 at 14:58
  • 1
    Moving a boiler from the basment to the attic would be a huge project and expose the whole house to water damage risk. And for what--higher volume flow from the shower!? Jan 15 at 16:12
  • It might also require a significant restructuring of the attic floor to support the weight of the full boiler.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 15 at 16:18
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    @Jim Stewart Have you seen my house? If I can have someone help me carry it up it would take me 30 minutes and $30 in material, then probably an hour to remove all the air. All plumbing is available already.
    – MLEN
    Jan 15 at 16:21

1 Answer 1


No, relocating the boiler won't make a difference to your water pressure. The pressure at the shower is the sum of the pressure available at the point where water service enters your house, minus the pressure losses due to pipe friction (related to pipe diameter and length), loss in the boiler, and loss due to the rise in elevation (0.4 PSI per foot, or 9.8 kPa per meter). The sequence of the components and their relative placement in the house don't matter.

Re-plumbing may make a difference if the pipe path is very long or under-sized, but for a hot water use frequently we prefer smaller-diameter pipe so that less time and water are wasted waiting for the hot water to arrive at the fixture.

You may also have flow restrictions. It's possible the boiler could limit flow to assure that its discharge is at the required temperature. It's also possible that your shower valve or shower head have intentional restrictions to reduce water consumption, or simply debris. Comparing the flow at another shower, bathtub filler, or sink may help you identify what's going on. You can literally compare the flows by measuring and comparing the time required to fill a bowl or bucket at each of the fixtures. You also can compare the flow of hot and cold at a fixture to identify whether the boiler is creating a restriction to flow.

  • If I have a loss due to elevation, why would I not get an increase when there is a drop?
    – MLEN
    Jan 15 at 16:19
  • "You also can compare the flow of hot and cold at a fixture to identify whether the boiler is creating a restriction to flow." +100! That should be the first thing done. Odds are good that there's simply a flow restricter in the shower head and that both hot & cold are "slow".
    – FreeMan
    Jan 15 at 16:19
  • because, @MLEN, that loss is minimal in comparison to the other losses. Also, as noted in comments on your question, there's likely SIGNIFICANT cost (and long-term risk of water damage) in doing the relocation to buy you back that minimal loss.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 15 at 16:20
  • @MLEN Yes, you will get an increase when there is a drop. But the water had to get up high before it could drop, and you'll incur extra pressure loss getting it there. Because the pipe is a closed system that loss and gain balance each other out and the net is zero.
    – Greg Hill
    Jan 15 at 16:39

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