Water Pressure

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Pressure Reducing Valves

Water Treatment PlantWater districts' distribution systems are rated by the California Department of Health Services based on the complexity of a system. The most complex system is considered a Distribution V; the least complex is considered a Distribution I. Trabuco Canyon Water District (TCWD) is rated as a Distribution IV system. This is due to the fact that much of the service area within TCWD's boundaries is at high elevations, and severe changes in elevations exist within the system. By necessity, this creates opportunities for very high and very low water pressures. Many of the water distribution and transmission pipelines that are in the ground have a very high pounds per square inch (psi) rating, and pressure reducing valves are located throughout the system. TCWD's entire water district system is overseen by employees who maintain certification as Distribution IV operators.

Why is it important to you? Many residences throughout the District may have pressure delivered to the meters at their residences which is quite high. The District is required to deliver water at a minimum of 40 psi, but in many cases the pressure at the meter can exceed 100 psi.

Pumps Make It All HappenMost residences, particularly if they are housing development homes, are equipped with pressure reducing valves. This is a device that is bell shaped and is typically located below the hose bib in front of the house where the water enters the house through a pipe. These devices operate with a spring and rubber diaphragm mechanism that can wear out after a number of years. TCWD strongly recommends that you acquire a simple water pressure gauge from a local hardware store (the cost is approximately $10.00) and attach it to your hose bib to measure your water pressure. If the pressure exceeds 75 psi, your water pressure regulator may need to be adjusted, repaired, or replaced. Failure to do so means the copper inside your home may be sustaining pressures in excess of what was intended by the builder. The result can mean small pinhole leaks in the piping located in the floor slabs or walls that can result in serious water damage.

Please be reminded that TCWD is not responsible for any water once it passes through the customer's side of the meter. District staff reminds you of the importance of your pressure regulator so that you can be aware of the importance of monitoring the pressure of the water system inside your home.