How To Adjust A Water Pressure Regulator

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Minimizing the Need for Plumbing Repairs

Hiring a plumber to make repairs tends to be a common occurrence for most homeowners as the years pass. While it’s virtually impossible to completely avoid the need for a professional plumber’s services, there are some things you can do to minimize wear and tear on your plumbing system so it doesn’t succumb to the need for repairs often. Using low-flow aerators on your sink faucets and shower heads as well as insulating your exposed pipes before winter can make a big difference in your plumbing’s performance. On this website you’ll find many tips and tricks that can be used to keep your plumbing in good shape, and even to save yourself some money on water costs throughout the year.

How To Adjust A Water Pressure Regulator

9 March 2017
 Categories: , Blog


If your water pressure seems off, the water pressure regulator could need adjusting. The standard water pressure for a residential home is 50-60 PSI(pounds per inch).

Water pressure more than 60 PSI can damage appliances and cause leaks. The good news is you should be able to adjust the regulator yourself. Here are tips to adjust a water pressure regulator.

Prepare to Work

Ask neighbors if they have high or low water pressure. Sometimes, it may be the municipality experiencing problems. Otherwise, proceed to adjust the regulator. For this project you need a socket wrench, pliers, a screwdriver, and a water pressure meter.

Check Current Water Pressure

Buy a water pressure meter from the hardware store. Connect the meter to a water outlet close to the water meter, such as a washing machine or faucet.The water pressure meter commonly has an adapter for all types of threaded connections.

Ensure all taps, sprinklers, and appliances that use water are turned off. Leaving them on could give a false reading.

Screw the water pressure meter fitting on the water outlet. Slowly turn on the water supply to the outlet. Examine the needle on the meter. A reading under 50 PSI or above 75 PSI means the regulator needs adjusting. Shut the valve off, and test again on a different water outlet. If the water pressure is still off, you may not have a pressure regulator installed or the regulator is faulty.

Adjust the Water Pressure Regulator

Locate the main water supply line, which is commonly near the water meter or in the basement. In a cooler climate, the water line may be in a utility room.

The water pressure regulator will be on the main water supply line. Look for a brass fitting with a bell shape in the middle. It will have a long screw running through the top and a lock nut near the housing. 

Use the socket wrench or pliers to loosen the lock nut. Turn the lock nut in small intervals to the right to increase pressure, or turn it to the left to decrease pressure. Again. don't set the water pressure too high.

Check the water pressure after each adjustment by opening a nearby tap. Leave the water on for one minute, and readjust the nut, if needed. Repeat this test for all appliances and faucets.

Re-tighten the lock nut after you get the right pressure. Avoid overtightening the lock nut, or it may cause leaks. If you don't trust your skill, the water pressure still doesn't work correctly, or you don't have  a water pressure regulator, contact  a plumber like those found at Midwestern Plumbing Service.