Maintaining optimal commercial water pressure throughout a facility ensures an adequate supply for each user. Imagine operating a hotel where guests cannot take a hot shower because housekeeping is washing sheets and the kitchen is running a dishwasher simultaneously. The importance of correct commercial water pressure also holds true in hospitals, restaurants, fitness centers, apartment complexes, and office buildings, among others.
Building owners and property managers need to know the correct commercial water pressure range for their facility and the problems associated with mismanaged water resources. If you own, operate, or maintain a commercial property, these are critical things to consider regarding commercial water pressure.
Commercial water pressure typically runs 40-80 PSI (pounds per square inch) in a given facility. Architects and engineers often design a building to accommodate a target PSI that makes sense with its usage. The plumbing infrastructure is also geared toward handling water pressure within its parameters. When a facility’s actual water pressure runs too high or too low, it can have significant consequences.
The average user generally understands that low water pressure results in faucets and showers trickling instead of providing adequate delivery. While this can prove inefficient and even annoying in some cases, low commercial water pressure can also create a safety risk. When water pressure runs too low, fire suppression systems may not function properly. If your building’s PSI is below the expected PSI, check into the following.
In some instances, a malfunctioning pressure regulator could throw off the facility’s PSI. Having the right tools and calibrations remains critical to calculating commercial water pressure.
Some people view higher water pressure as a good thing. The idea of running multiple water sources and still enjoying a forceful hot shower is usually a perk. But costly damage can occur when commercial water pressure rises above the plumbing system’s limits. These rank among the common reasons PSI might spike.
If you notice your pipes are making a banging sound or drips are cropping up at various locations, the water pressure may be too high. When commercial water pressure is too high, it can damage pipes, create leaks, and result in waste. Every time someone opens a spigot, property owners are paying for water literally going down the drain.
There are wide-reaching factors that go into calculating the optimal water pressure of a commercial building. Its overall square footage, number of floors, type of plumbing system, and anticipated activities play a role in the PSI designation. If you are experiencing any of the following telltale signs of faulty commercial water pressure, consult with a licensed plumber or engineer.
Wet floors and bowing or cracking pipes are also reasons for concern. It’s essential to take proactive measures to cure commercial water pressure problems before they prove costly.
It’s not always necessary to pay a licensed plumber to make an initial assessment of your building’s water pressure. One of the simplest ways to learn the PSI involves attaching a water pressure gauge to one faucet after another. Turn the water on full blast and the gauge will give you a reasonable estimate of the PSI. By running this DIY test on multiple faucets across various facility areas, you’ll have a good idea of whether the commercial water pressure is consistent throughout the plumbing system. These tools can help simplify the process of maintaining precise water pressure.
If your pressure gauge readings indicate the plumbing system does not fall within the standard 40-80 PSI range, it’s advisable to consult with an expert. Going forward, it may be prudent to have devices installed to maintain proper PSI and avoid unnecessary problems.