Filling a watering can or setting up a sprinkler can be difficult (if not impossible) with low water pressure. While we all want to save water, sometimes you need a little force to get things done. Hiring a plumber to inspect your system to find the problem can be expensive, though—but there are some things you can try before you call in a pro if water pressure is a problem with your outdoor water supply.
First check whether the hose is the culprit
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The first thing to check if the water pressure coming out of your hose is low is the hose itself. To do this, just turn off the spigot, unscrew the hose from the faucet, then turn it back on. If the water pressure coming directly from the source is OK, the hose is your culprit. You might have a clog in the hose or a leak, so you can replace or repair your hose to fix the issue.
The next thing to check is any valves that are involved in your outdoor water system. In some homes, there is a shut-off valve for the exterior water supply in the basement or in a utility closet or garage. If this valve isn’t open all the way, or if there are valves connected to a watering system or hose splitter outside, the water pressure will be low after the partially open valve. This is an easy fix: Just open all the valves all the way.
If it’s time for a new garden hose, here are some of the top-rated options to check out.
Replace washers or the spigot
If neither of the simplest issues is the cause, you might have damaged parts on your spigot or in the faucet handle. To fix this, turn off the water to the outdoor water, then check the handle that controls the spout, making sure it turns normally in both directions. If it’s not shutting off the water effectively or it’s hard to open, you might have damaged washers or other parts that control the valve in the handle. You can replace the whole spigot with a new one or you can try replacing the damaged washers.
To look for damaged washers, unscrew the tap handle and look inside at the valve the handle controls to find the washer. It can be hard to figure out exactly what type of washer you need, but you can get an assortment of plumbing washers for around $6 at most hardware stores.
Remove hard water buildup
If the issue with your tap isn’t the washers, it could be hard-water buildup. To fix this, mix some baking soda with a little bit of water to make a paste. Coat the faucet with the paste and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Wipe the paste off with a clean rag and brush off any stubborn bits with a wire brush. You can also try using the paste inside the tap by applying it with a spout brush or tube brush and then scrubbing it away.
When to call a professional
To determine if you have a more extensive problem, turn on the taps inside to see if the water pressure indoors is also low. If that’s the case, either the water supply line is at fault or the water pressure regulator is the problem. These are both issues that you should call a professional for because anything that could cause an issue with the water meter or with the entire water supply in your home requires tools and training to fix.