Booster pump to increase mains pressure

Discussion in 'UK DIY' started by Martin Pentreath, May 15, 2006.

  1. Hi,

    I have pretty low mains water pressure (just over 1 bar) and a fairly
    low flow rate to the taps. Thames Water won't do anything because they
    say it is within acceptable limits. I've just been looking at these
    things:
    http://www.machinemart.co.uk/product.asp?p=051010375&g=122&r=2158
    It would be an easy job to put one into the incoming main in the
    cellar, but would it make any worthwhile difference. Rate of flow is
    more important to me than pressure, especially when more than one tap
    is open. I've never quite got my head around the difference between
    rate of flow and pressure, but I don't see how one of these things
    could actually suck more water out of the incoming supply in order to
    increase the rate of flow.
     
    Martin Pentreath, May 15, 2006
    #1
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  2. Martin Pentreath

    Ed Sirett Guest

    On Mon, 15 May 2006 10:41:07 -0700, Martin Pentreath wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > I have pretty low mains water pressure (just over 1 bar) and a fairly
    > low flow rate to the taps. Thames Water won't do anything because they
    > say it is within acceptable limits. I've just been looking at these
    > things:
    > http://www.machinemart.co.uk/product.asp?p=051010375&g=122&r=2158
    > It would be an easy job to put one into the incoming main in the
    > cellar, but would it make any worthwhile difference. Rate of flow is
    > more important to me than pressure, especially when more than one tap
    > is open. I've never quite got my head around the difference between
    > rate of flow and pressure, but I don't see how one of these things
    > could actually suck more water out of the incoming supply in order to
    > increase the rate of flow.


    It is illegal to pump water out of the mains without a permit (which
    likely won't be given).

    There are three ways to improve the mains water to your home. None cheap
    all with drawbacks.

    1) Replace the existing mains from the road with 25mm MPDE this will not
    increase the standing pressure but will increase the flow rate.

    2) Fit accumulators and a non-return valve. This only help if the
    pressure is good during most/some of the day and not at other times when

    3) Apart from the sink put all water into a storage cistern as low as
    possible and then fit a quality negative head pump to supply all the rest
    of the house.

    --
    Ed Sirett - Property maintainer and registered gas fitter.
    The FAQ for uk.diy is at http://www.diyfaq.org.uk
    Gas fitting FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/GasFitting.html
    Sealed CH FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/SealedCH.html
    Choosing a Boiler FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/BoilerChoice.html
    Gas Fitting Standards Docs here: http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/GasFittingStandards
     
    Ed Sirett, May 15, 2006
    #2
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  3. Martin Pentreath

    Sparks Guest

    "Martin Pentreath" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi,
    >
    > I have pretty low mains water pressure (just over 1 bar) and a fairly
    > low flow rate to the taps. Thames Water won't do anything because they
    > say it is within acceptable limits. I've just been looking at these
    > things:
    > http://www.machinemart.co.uk/product.asp?p=051010375&g=122&r=2158
    > It would be an easy job to put one into the incoming main in the
    > cellar, but would it make any worthwhile difference. Rate of flow is
    > more important to me than pressure, especially when more than one tap
    > is open. I've never quite got my head around the difference between
    > rate of flow and pressure, but I don't see how one of these things
    > could actually suck more water out of the incoming supply in order to
    > increase the rate of flow.


    It's illegal to pump water out of the mains supply, this is so dirty water
    does not get sucked in the leaking pipes.

    You can however, pump water from a tank, so, if you have a tank in the loft,
    you can stick a pump on the outlet from this (and the hot water cylinder, if
    you have one)

    Pressure is the force the water is trying to get out of the pipe, so with
    everything off, the pipes and taps are holding back 1 bar of pressure, 1 bar
    is like having a tank of water 10 meters high, so if you had a 15mm pipe
    connected to a tank of water 10 meters in the air, the pressure would be
    about 1 bar, however, if you had 22mm pipe connected, the pressure will be
    the same, but the flow will be greater. 10mm pipe will still be 1 bar, but
    the flow will be far less.

    Have you made sure all you stopcocks are fully open?
    If you have any of the silver service valves
    (http://www.screwfix.com/app/sfd/cat/pro.jsp?cId=100121&ts=29674&id=17447 or
    http://tinyurl.com/mcdg7
    these will reduce the flow quite a lot, as the hole in the moving ball is
    only about 10mm
    Your main stopcock may also be restricting the flow.

    If it is causing you a big problem, I would do the following...

    time how long it takes to fill a bucket from your kitchen tap, and also your
    outside tap (if you have one)

    Turn off the water at the stopcock
    Disconnect the pipe to the rest of the house
    connect a piece of pipe (plastic would be best here)
    do the test again here, if there is no significant improvement, it may be
    the stopcock

    If this is the case, then turn the water off in the road
    remove the stop cock and repeat the test - if again there is no significant
    improvement, then you are stuffed!


    Sparks...
     
    Sparks, May 15, 2006
    #3
  4. Martin Pentreath

    robgraham Guest

    I would suggest in line with the other answers that the problem lies
    more in the piping than the pressure. If the pipes are small and have
    restrictions then higher pressure will overcome that but actually 1 bar
    pressure with adequate piping is quite reasonable. The reason for
    saying that is the flow from my hot water taps is perfectly acceptable
    with all running despite having a head of less than 5 metres - ie 0.5
    bar - but I recognised I had a potential problem when I replumbed and
    used 22mm pipe with long bends and full bore isolators, and a 28mm feed
    to the hw tank.

    The thing of course id that the pressure being measured by the water
    board is the static pressure - ie without any water flowing !

    Rob
     
    robgraham, May 16, 2006
    #4
  5. Martin Pentreath

    robgraham Guest

    Ed - Can I ask what a 'negative head pump ' pump is please ?

    Rob
     
    robgraham, May 16, 2006
    #5
  6. Martin Pentreath

    Ed Sirett Guest

    On Tue, 16 May 2006 02:40:59 -0700, robgraham wrote:

    > Ed - Can I ask what a 'negative head pump ' pump is please ?
    >

    Essentially a pump which with a non-return valve and a pressure switch so
    that it switches on when the pressure in the outlet pipe fails below a
    certain amount (in theory when water is been drawn off).
    There is also a small expansion vessel to prevent 'hunting'.


    --
    Ed Sirett - Property maintainer and registered gas fitter.
    The FAQ for uk.diy is at http://www.diyfaq.org.uk
    Gas fitting FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/GasFitting.html
    Sealed CH FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/SealedCH.html
    Choosing a Boiler FAQ http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/BoilerChoice.html
    Gas Fitting Standards Docs here: http://www.makewrite.demon.co.uk/GasFittingStandards
     
    Ed Sirett, May 16, 2006
    #6
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