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a water pressure regulator with a pressure gauge connected to a water line

Water Pressure Regulator

Originally contributed by Jeff Butler • last updated 1/22/2021

Most residential plumbing systems come equipped with a water pressure regulator (aka, a pressure reducing valve - PRV) to control the pressure of the water coming into the home. Without it, pipes could burst, fixtures could break, and faucets will probably leak.

Definition

The term water pressure regulator (often called a pressure reducing valve - PRV) typically refers to a specialized water pressure reducing valve attached to the main water line that reduces the pressure of the water as it enters the home before it reaches any faucets or appliances. Water pressure regulators are commonly made from brass and usually have an adjustable screw or bolt on the top that controls the amount of pressure allowed through the valve. Some PRV valves come equipped with gauges to monitor the amount of pressure.

How To Adjust Water Pressure Regulator

Maintaining a suitable water pressure running through your home is essential for preventing damage to faucets and fixtures and avoiding leaks. Here’s what you need to know about adjusting your water pressure regulator:

  • Typically, a home’s water pressure should be set between 40 to 45 psi and it should almost never exceed 60 psi. However, your water pressure regulator valve may be able to achieve higher and lower rates.
  • With most water pressure regulators, there is a screw or a bolt on the top that can be turned to increase or decrease the water pressure allowed through the PRV.
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